LB — Darius Leonard 7.19


Scout- Cody Manning


College: South Carolina St.


Height: 6'2"


Weight: 234 lbs


40-Time: 4.7


Bench Press: 17


Vertical: N/A





Athleticism: 7.33

Q.A.B. / C.O.D. 7.50 He is very quick, he can run down most backs, closes space, changes direction with ease.  Flexibility 7.00 Does a good job at keeping a nice bend at most times, can dip underneath lineman to make tackle.  Explosiveness 7.75 Very explosive, he will take off in the direction he wants and closes the space very quickly.  Playing Speed 7.00 When he knows where he wants to go, that’s when he is playing fast, speed can look off at times.  Coordination 7.50 Very coordinated, he is very hard to knock off balance, hold his own versus lineman.  Position Versatility 7.25 His athleticism will allow him to play most positions, believe he makes a better ILB.


Pass Rush Ability 6.94

Initial Quickness 7.50 This allows him to get in the backfield before the lineman have a chance to get their hands on him.  Rush with Leverage 6.50 He can come in too high at times, his long arms help him, but needs to get get under lineman.  Pass Rush Moves 6.50 He doesn’t have a variety of moves, he relies on his athleticism to get around lineman to get pressure.  Pressure Consistency 7.25 When his speed gets him by the lineman he always gets pressure, consistent when sent on blitz.


Coverage 7.06

Pass Drops 7.50 He does a great job at falling back into coverage, he seems comfortable dropping back.  Coverage Awareness 6.50 He can misread at times and will need to develop at reading routes. Reacts quickly when he does.  M/M Coverage 7.25 His athleticism allows him to turn his hips and run with his man. Can keep up with assignments.  Zone Coverage 7.00 He does a good job at reacting to the quarterbacks eyes and has the ability to cover his area.


Against The Run 7.20

Play with Leverage 6.75 He can come in too high at times, when he does this, he gives the lineman the advantage.  Stack and Shed 8.00 This is where he excels, his long arms makes it difficult for lineman to get their hands on him.  Run at Him 7.25 When he sheds the block he will stuff the run, he can take bad angles at times and takes him out of it  Runs Away 7.25 He is a sideline to sideline player, he has the quickness to close space to make the tackle.  Tackling/Hitting 6.75 He comes in to high at times, sometimes will bring the wood, depends on arms to make the tackle.


Competitiveness 7.58

Toughness 7.25 He will fight to make the play, loves to make a hit when he gets the chance.  Production 8.50 Very productive player, senior year — 113 Tackles, 8 sacks, 3 PD, 1 FF, 2 INT  Consistency/Motor 7.00 He is consistently looking to make plays, can look like at times his speed is off.


Intelligence: 7.00

Instincts 6.75 He will need to improve his instincts as he can react late, can take bad angles.  Learn/Retain 7.00 Based on tape, can misread at times, will need to need to improve in this area


STRENGTHS

He is long and athletic which will help him at the next level. He excels at using his long arms to help shed lineman with ease. He makes it difficult for them to get their arms on him, which helps stuffing the run. He is very quick, and is a sideline to sideline player. He has the ability to close space to make the tackle or get pressure on the quarterback. He has the ability to drop back in coverage, he flows easily, and can turn his hips to run with most running backs and tight ends. He is highly productive, and wants to make a play every possession.


WEAKNESSES

While he is long and athletic, he does have a lean body so it does concern me if he doesn’t gain more mass if strong lineman will have their way with him. He sometimes plays with a high pad level so he loses the leverage battle at times. When in pass coverage he can react slow which takes him out of the play at times. He also can take bad angles at times and it allows running backs to get by him at times. He depends on his athleticism at times which hampers him in run support when he takes himself out of plays. He does need to improve his tackling, depends on arms too much.


BIG PICTURE

Leonard has all the ability to succeed at the next level. His athleticism will allow him to come in and contribute to a team right away. He will need to improve in small areas in run stuffing and pass coverage but he should be able to help out in both areas so he doesn’t need to be off the field in any type of situation. He is a sideline to sideline player and has the ability to close space to make a play on the ball carrier. He excels at shedding blocks with his long arms which allows him to stuff runs. He can be efficient on blitzes when his initial quickness allows him to get around the lineman to get pressure on the quarterback. He will need to develop pass rush moves if a team wants him to come in to rush the quarterback. I believe he needs a year to develop more strength and body mass. If a team needs him to start, I believe he can but they should expect there will be times where he will make errors. I think if he develops by his third season he should be the best linebacker on whichever team takes him. I would take him somewhere in the late 2nd — early 3rd round.

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