NFL Draft – Inside Linebacker Rankings

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Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

7.) Max Bullough, Michigan St (6’3, 249): It’s been a tumultuous last few months for Bullough; He was suspended for MSU’s bowl game for undisclosed reasons and then showed up to Senior Bowl practices noticeably overweight. His draft stock was plummeting, but he stopped the slide at the combine with a better than expected 4.78 40-time and one of the best bench sets from the linebackers (30 reps). Bullough’s game tape is excellent, he was the leader of one of the best defenses in the country and is a force vs the run. He shows good timing and burst through holes to stuff plays at the LOS and is a heavy hitter with better than expected range sideline to sideline. He struggles in coverage and might just be a 2-down LB, but he can be a quality run-stuffer preferably in a 3-4 alignment. Draft Projection: 4th-5th round

8.) Andrew Jackson, Western Kentucky (6’1, 254): One of my favorite late round players in the draft, Jackson is a throw-back MLB who is a big–time hitter and play-maker. He’s a step slow, but makes up for it with great instincts and is a good fit in the middle of a 3-4 scheme. He’s going to struggle in coverage so might only be a 2-down linebacker but he could be an elite run-stopper by the end of his rookie year. Draft Projection: 5th-6th round

9.) Lamin Barrow, LSU (6’1, 230): A great athlete who is still learning the linebacker position and is far from a finished product. Barrow needs work on his tackling and block shedding technique, but has elite athleticism, good speed  and has starter potential down the road. He should be an excellent special teams player right off the bat. Draft Projection: 4th-5th round

10.) Kahri Fortt, California (6’2, 246): Better athlete than football player at this point, but has a very good speed / strength ratio and could eventually become a solid 3-4 ILB or 4-3 WILL.  Fortt should be a solid special teams player while he improves his technique at linebacker. Draft Projection: 5th-6th round