Scouting Reports – 2013

Dee Milliner scouting report

Dee Milliner CB Alabama #28
Ht: 6’0″
Wt: 201

Size/Athleticism: Adequate height with a solid overall build. Speed isn’t anything special, but he can run with most receivers.

Coverage: Doesn’t use a traditional backpedal technique, as taught by Nick Saban at Alabama. Technique works for him, but some coaches may be concerned with how he’ll adjust to the way want their corners to play. Ability to read the quarterback is impressive. He does a great job keep his eyes on the quarterback and quickly reacting to put himself in position to make a play. Seems to have a strong grasp on how his speed matches up with opposing receivers. He adjusts his technique accordingly and rarely gets beat over the top.

Ball skills: Consistently reads the quarterback and plays the ball rather than the receiver. Consistently puts himself in position to contest the reception. Hands aren’t great, but he’ll come down with some interceptions.

Run support: Capable of stepping up against the run. He’s strong enough to shed blocks from receivers. Doesn’t attack the ball carrier with force. Attempts a lot of arm tackles and often comes up empty. He’s strong enough to be more consistent in run support; it’s just a matter of putting forth the effort.

Intangibles: Three-year starter in the SEC.

Durability: No issues of note.

Comments: Milliner is the premier corner in this year’s draft class. His ability to read the quarterback is what really makes him stand out. Rarely do you see a college cornerback consistently reading the quarterback and making plays on the ball. He will immediately be a No. 1 corner at the level and could develop into one of the elite corners in the game.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in Scouting Reports - 2013 Leave a comment

Alec Ogletree scouting report

Alec Ogletree LB Georgia #9
Ht: 6’3″
Wt: 242

Size/Athleticism: Taller than most inside linebackers. Elite athlete for the position. Has the speed to be a sideline-to-sideline defender. He’s a fluid athlete who can match up with any tight end in coverage.

Run Defense: Covers a ton of ground. He’ll often be the first defender to the ball carrier even when lined up on the opposite side of the line from the direction of the play. Speed allows him to take angles that most linebackers simply can’t attempt. Not the type of linebacker that can step up and fill holes. He isn’t especially tough or strong and doesn’t shed a lot of blocks, especially at the point of attack. He’s more of a “clean up the mess” linebacker against the run, almost like a safety. He stays back and makes a lot of tackles in the 3 to 5 yard range. Doesn’t make a ton of impact tackles at or behind the line of scrimage unless he’s blitzing from the opposite direction of the play and he’s able to sneak up from behind.

Pass Rush: Not used frequently, but he has the speed to be an effective edge rusher in certain situations. He’s not a 3-4 outside linebacker who can consistently shed tackles, but if he’s lined up in a favorable matchup he can win with his sped. Most of his blitzes either came up the middle in 3-4 sets, or as the strong-side linebacker in a 4-3 sets.

Coverage: Elite coverage ability. A former safety who knows how to drop in coverage and read the quarterback. Primarily dropped into zone coverage at Georgia, but has the speed and agility to match up with tight ends and running back in man coverage. His technique needs some refining in order to be able to hang with some of the more athletic tight ends, but the raw talent is definitely there. If he commits himself to refining his skills, he will be one of the best in the game in coverage.

Intangibles: Suspended for four games in 2012 for violating team rules (reportedly substance abuse issue). Arrested for DUI just weeks before combine.

Durability: Missed most of 2011 season with a broken foot.

Comments: Ogletree is an elite talent with serious off-field baggage. He’s not a player that should be on every board because in the wrong situation he will continue to get into trouble and will never pan out. But if a team is comfortable with the leadership in the locker room, he would be worth a first-round selection. In today’s NFL, linebackers with Ogletree’s athleticism are more valuable than every. I would prefer him in the 4-3 scheme due to the fact that he won’t have to take on interior linemen as often, which he struggles with. But in the 4-3 he could play any of the three linebacker positions.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in Scouting Reports - 2013 Leave a comment

Kevin Minter scouting report

Kevin Minter LB LSU #46
Ht: 6’0″
Wt: 246

Size/Athleticism: Shorter than the average linebacker. Strength is decent; he has shown the ability to shed blocks fairly consistently. Athleticism isn’t quite in the elite category, but he has enough burst to close quickly on the ball carrier and make plays in coverage.

Run Defense: Lacks elite size but has demonstrated an ability to consistently shed blocks. Does a decent job fighting though traffic. He isn’t exceptionally quick, but he has a nice blend of athleticism and strength which allows him to fight through the traffic to get to the ball carrier.  Capable of taking on bigger ball carriers in one-on-one situations. Needs to improve his ability to diagnose on the run. He’s a step slow when reacting to the play and seems to lack the ability to read the offense quickly after the snap. Inconsistent tackling ability. He can hit hard, but he’ll miss some easy tackles.

Pass Rush: Limited experience as a pass-rusher. Occasionally used to blitz up the middle but lacks the size and strength to fight past the offensive linemen if he doesn’t have a clear path.

Coverage: Much faster than this timed speed at the combine. Needs to work on his basic fundamentals, but the talent is there. His footwork is inconsistent and he takes a lot of false steps, but if he were to straighten out those fundamental mistakes, he’ll have the quickness and athleticism to hold his own in coverage. Plays with his back to the quarterback far too often. He needs to drop back in coverage and still keep his eyes on the quarterback, especially against the more athletic quarterbacks in the league who are a threat to run.

Intangibles: Two-year starter in the SEC.

Durability: No significant issues.

Comments: Minter is raw, but he has the physical tools to develop into a quality starting middle or weak-side linebacker. The biggest concern with Minter is his coverage ability, but he displays the athleticism necessarily to excel in that area. LSU occasionally allowed him to line up over the slot receiver, including against Coby Hamilton vs Arkansas. He may experience some growing pains in the NFL, but there’s a lot of upside to his game.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in Scouting Reports - 2013 1 Comment

Manti Te’o scouting report

Manti Te’o LB Notre Dame #5
Ht: 6’1″
Wt: 241

Size/Athleticism: Prototypical size with adequate strength. Lacks the athleticism to really excel in today’s NFL. He’s a liability in coverage and lacks the elite lateral movement and straight-line speed to be a sideline-to-sideline defender.

Run Defense: Lacks the elite quickness and agility to fight through traffic. He does a nice job diagnosing the play and reacting quickly, but he’s often a step late because he gets caught up in traffic. Struggles to disengage from blocks. Gets swallowed up at the point of attack. Moves downhill at the snap on every running play, which gets offensive linemen the opportunity to quickly get to him and take him out of the play. I’d prefer to see him stay back more often, giving him an extra second to diagnose the play

Pass Rush: Rarely used as a pass-rusher. He isn’t fast enough to catch the offensive line off guard and slip past unblocked, and he isn’t strong enough to shed blocks fast enough to get into the backfield.

Coverage: Limited in coverage due to do very average athleticism. He lacks the fluid hips to turn and run with most tight ends and running backs. He’s physical, so he can fight with the tight end at the line of scrimmage, but when lined up a middle linebacker he’s rarely in position to for that type of interaction. He does have good ball skills, but almost all of his interceptions came from simply being in the right place at the right time. He’s not the type of linebacker who makes plays for himself in coverage, he just capitalizes on mistakes. He does a decent job reading the quarterback when he’s in zone coverage, but he simply lacks the quick-twitch athleticism to read the quarterback and react quickly enough to make a play.

Intangibles: The catfishing incident is something that needs to be considered. While he’s respected by teammates, he has a reputation for keeping to himself off the field. He’s a quiet, religious guy who doesn’t fit the typical mold of a high-profile NFL player. He’s going to be harassed by teammates and opponents about the incident and teams will need to grill him on the subject to ensure that he will be able to handle the scrutiny without letting it affect his performance. At the combine he blamed stress for a poor showing. While there’s no denying that the combine is stressful, so is life in the NFL. Can he handle it? Was stress also the reason for a sub-par showing in the National Championship Game? These are questions that may not affect his grade, but they need to be addressed during the interview process.

Durability: No significant issues.

Comments: The best way to summarize Te’o is to say that he takes advantage of mistakes, but rarely creates plays for himself. When he ends up in the right place at the right time, he’ll finish the play but he rarely makes the athletic play to really stand out as an elite prospect. His athleticism is shaky at best and in today’s NFL, he is going to be a liability in many matchups both in coverage and against teams that run the read option. Another concern with Te’o is the fact the he seems to understand his lack of athleticism, and tries to overcompensate by guessing too often. Here’s a great example from the Alabama game in which he starts to move pre-snap, and ends up yielding an easy touchdown (also note that he’s not even moving in the direction of Lacy’s fake run, he’s purely guessing).

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in Scouting Reports - 2013 Leave a comment

Arthur Brown scouting report

Arthur Brown LB Kansas State #4
Ht: 6’0″
Wt: 241

Size/Athleticism: Slightly undersized but makes up for it with his athleticism. Elite quickness and agility to excel in coverage and has the speed to close quickly on the ball carrier.

Run Defense: Typically plays off the line of scrimmage to avoid engaging in blocks. Stays patient in his space but then closes with an impressive burst when he diagnoses the play. A very patient linebacker who stays in his zone and rarely commits too early or misreads a play. Vision is his best asset as he needs to weave through traffic without engaging with a blocker. Reliable wrap-up tackler but also a hard hitter. Extremely explosive and can build up steam in a short distance to lay out a running back.

Pass Rush: Rarely used as a pass-rusher. He can occasionally catch the offensive line off guard and slip through on a delayed blitz up the middle or sneak by unblocked off the edge, but he won’t provide a consistent pass rush. He’s strictly a coverage linebacker, who can be used on a sneak attack a few times per game.

Coverage: Elite in man coverage. Has the speed and agility to stick with any tight end or linebacker, and even some receivers. However, he lacks the height to match up with some possession tight ends. He can be a liability in coverage in the red zone when matched up with tight ends that have a four or five inch advantage. Diagnostic skills in zone coverage could use some work. He’s often a step late to react, but definitely has the ability to improve in this area with more experience.

Intangibles: Two-time team captain. Older brother of Eagles running back Bryce Brown. Named in the allegations against Miami by booster Nevin Shapiro for receiving impermissible benefits. Transferred to Kansas State after 2009 season.

Durability: Missed Senior Bowl due to shoulder injury.

Comments: Brown is the type of athlete that many teams are going to start to look for to help slow down the read-option offense. He’s a true sideline-to-sideline defender who can play in either the 4-3 or 3-4 scheme. In a 3-4 he’s strictly an inside linebacker. In the 4-3 he can play the middle or weak-side position. He may receive a range of grades depending on the scheme, but any team looking for an elite athlete in coverage and against today’s evolving offenses, Brown should receive a first-round grade.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in Scouting Reports - 2013 Leave a comment