2021 NFL Draft Outside Linebacker Rankings

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Dylan Moses NFL

2021 NFL Draft Outside Linebacker Rankings includes a prospect ranking, a breakdown of scouting for the position, key questions about the position, and a link to learn more.

Outside Linebacker Rankings:

  1. Dylan Moses, Alabama
  2. Micah Parsons, Penn State
  3. Merlin Robertson, Arizona State
  4. Brenton Cox Jr., Florida
  5. Chazz Surratt, North Carolina

2021 NFL Draft Outside Linebacker Rankings

  • First trick is determining the position in the NFL- if possibly a defensive end. Most 4-3 DE’s are fairly long and built, but some 4-3 DE’s in certain systems are “designated pass rushers” or “pass rush specialists”, that might come in on 3rd down or any obvious passing down. That is generally a smaller, speedier defensive end that could be a liability against the run.
  • Primary skills to evaluate:
    • Ability to drop into coverage (including covering matchup nightmares like speedy tight ends and running backs that move into the slot to receive).
    • Run stopping ability.
    • Blitzing ability (or general pass rush ability).
    • “Sideline to sideline” agility and range.
    • Can “break down”, which is a tackling technique of stopping before you tackle someone so you don’t get beat by last second moves.
    • Number of sacks / INT’s, TFL’s
    • Most of the OLB’s in the scouting reports are either middle linebackers in 4-3’s or OLB’s in 3-4… the skillset is often pretty close. Guys that are destined to play strongside or weakside in a 4-3 are generally a tier below and skew strongly to either better against the run, or better in coverage.
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