The New England Patriots drafted Ohio State defensive back Nate Ebner with the 197th overall in the 2012 NFL Draft.
Ebner was a former Rugby player that saw limited action on special teams in college. Ohio State ranked 15th out of 120 FBS teams in pass defense in 2011. Ebner is #34 for Ohio State if you want to watch the highlights and point out a few notes for yourself.
In the first game vs Akron, you will see Ebner line up on special teams. Ebner does a great job getting to the kick returner to execute the tackle.
Ebner displays outstanding versatility, Ebner can be used as a slot cornerback, reserve safety, nickel cornerback, dime cornerback, backup strong safety, or backup free safety.
On one play he lines up as a nickel cornerback and drops back into zone coverage to make a tackle which forces an incompletion. The following play he sacks Akron’s quarterback for a loss when attacking on the blitz as a field cornerback. Great job by Ebner mixing up his ability to remain unpredictable.
On the first play of the Colorado game, Ebner does a great job of sprinting towards the end zone when executing his block on the return. Two minutes into the highlights vs Colorado, Ebner positions himself to make a key tackle on special teams.
On another kick return, Ebner does an exceptional job blocking. His block sets up a fantastic kick return. Ebner is even able to gain some separation by using his speed to excel downfield on the return. The kick returner fumbled the ball, but Ebner’s execution of his assignment on special teams leads to a huge fumble recovery for Ohio State which puts them on the goal line.
On the final play of the Colorado highlight, Ebner was able to hold his block. After holding the block for a while, Ebner gets by his blocker to help Ohio State execute a gang tackle where multiple defenders would execute a tackle on special teams.