Mack Wilson 2019 NFL Draft Profile

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Mack Wilson
OXFORD, MS - SEPTEMBER 15: Mack Wilson #30 of the Alabama Crimson Tide defends during a game against the Mississippi Rebels at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium on September 15, 2018 in Oxford, Mississippi. (Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images)

Overview
Position: Linebacker
Height: 6’1″
Weight: 240 pounds
School: Alabama Crimson Tide

Combine Performance Data (Pro Day)
40-yard dash: 4.71 seconds
Vertical Jump: 33 inches
Broad Jump: 10.08 inches
Three-cone drill: 7.20 seconds
20-yard shuttle: 4.50 seconds

Mack Wilson 2019 NFL Draft Profile

It says a lot about the depth of defensive talent in this draft that Mack Wilson is likely to be available on day two. He is the latest on the Alabama production line of top-tier linebackers and, predictably, comes with a skill set that should see him take on a prominent role early in his career. But for a few technique deficiencies, Wilson may be talked up alongside Devin White and Devin Bush as one of the top inside linebackers in the class.

As it is, he could prove to be a day two steal for the team that scoops him up. If his aggressive on-field demeanor is any evidence, Wilson will not lack the motivation to prove he was worthy of a first-round selection should he indeed have to wait until the second day to hear his name called.

Strengths

  • an easy mover in the open field, smooth hip turn, changes direction easily;
  • great short-area speed and close to the football;
  • consistently able to get off second-level blocks, using his leverage well, and find the football;
  • assignment sound in zone coverage – can pick up backs, receivers, and tight ends;
  • organizes the defense pre-snap, reads the eyes of the quarterback very well and uses his burst to get a great drive on the ball;
  • aggressive attacking downhill against the run and the pass, unafraid to take on offensive linemen head on and can convert speed to power to drive them backwards;
  • able to get skinny and slip through small creases and can navigate traffic as a blitzer;
  • impressive on-ball production with six interceptions and seven passes defended in college.

Weaknesses

  • slightly below average frame for the position – could be a hindrance when taking on linemen in the run game;
  • tackling technique requires significant improvement – often hits too high and focuses too much on going for the big hit rather than wrapping up;
  • regularly takes questionable angles in pursuit;
  • only one sack in his collegiate career and just seven tackles for loss;
  • Occasionally overaggressive when attacking downhill rather than waiting for the play to develop, leaving open cutback lanes;

NFL Comparison: Darron Lee

Teams With Need at Position: Cincinnati Bengals, Denver Broncos, Cleveland Browns, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Kansas City Chiefs, Oakland Raiders, Los Angeles Rams, Baltimore Ravens, Pittsburgh Steelers

Projection: Third round

Bottom Line

If you can cover and you can rush the passer, there’s likely a home for you as a linebacker in today’s NFL. Wilson, despite his disappointing sack production, has shown promise in each of those areas and has the bonuses of being an impressive run defender who effectively served as the quarterback of a vaunted Alabama defense. He may not ascend to such a role immediately as a rookie but his athletic traits and ability to affect the pass game should see him earn plentiful snaps early in his career. Wilson has the potential to be a productive every-down linebacker at the next level but will need to clean up his pursuit angles and tackling technique in order to realize that potential.

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