Unique Ways To Utilize Certain 2012 NFL Draft Prospects
I’ve watched the filmed games of a number of prospects, hoping to find ideal fits for my beloved New York Jets, but what I ended up thinking afterwards was that some players would be better off in a different position. After seeing Rex Ryan, when he was coaching the defense in Baltimore, put Haloti Ngata at the 3-4 defensive tackle position (a position similar to the five technique defensive end), and Wade Phillips utilizing Mario Williams as a 3-4 outside linebacker in Houston this past year, I have started to look at players in a different way.
I truly believe that many NFL players that end up being labeled busts or disappointing draft picks would have been better off under a different coach, in a different system, and in some cases playing a different position. So here are my “out of the box” ideas regarding some of this year’s possible first round NFL Draft prospects:
- Chandler Jones, Syracuse University: some NFL Draft experts, such as Mel Kiper, think that Jones would be a good fit at 3-4 outside linebacker. After watching him pla, against West Virginia, Pittsburgh, and the University of Connecticut, I can almost guarantee he would be a “bust” at that position. I see Jones best suited to play as a five technique defensive end. Yes I know he’s only 266 pounds but if he can add another 15-20 pounds of muscle to his relatively lean frame he would be a very good player as a 5-tech.
- Courtney Upshaw, University of Alabama: almost every person I’ve spoken to envisions this popular defensive player as a 3-4 outside linebacker, and he might do well at that position, if put in the right situation. Despite the general consensus by other people, I think there’s a better use for this run stopper. If I was the general manager of the Philadelphia Eagles, then I would draft Upshaw with the fifteenth overall pick. I believe that Upshaw would be a Pro Bowl 4-3 outside linebacker as a rookie, and he would be effective in stifling the rushing offenses of the Eagles’ NFC East opponents. The linebacker core of Philadelphia was a weakness for the team in 2011, but with the addition of DeMeco Ryans and Courtney Upshaw it would become a strength.
- Dontari Poe, University of Memphis: every team utilizing the 3-4 defense, except maybe Baltimore, should consider drafting Poe. He would be best utilized in the same 3-4 defensive tackle role that Haloti Ngata plays for Baltimore. Poe looks like a far more motivated and dangerous player when playing on the outside than the inside, which leads me to believe he would be a complete failure as a zero technique nose tackle.
- Melvin Ingram, University of South Carolina: the draft community is split on how to best use this integuing prospect. There are some that think Ingram could easily play as a pass rushing 4-3 defensive end, others think Ingram would be best suited as a 3-4 outside linebacker in a role similiar to the one Adalius Thomas played for the Baltimore Ravens under Rex Ryan, and there are a number of people who think he lacks a true position. I think I have figured out the position Ingram should play, thanks to a conversation I had with Jeremy Hyde, known as @Froginthewindow on Twitter. I believe that Ingram would be best suited to play at inside/middle linebacker where his coverage skills, the biggest strength of the linebacker’s, would be best utilized.
Todd Gurley Will Become An Immediate Star For Rams
The St. Louis Rams selected running back Todd Gurley with the No. 11 overall pick, and he will become an immediate star in his rookie season. Read More