Rashaan Evans Draft Profile
Rashaan Evans Draft Profile
Rashaan Evans patiently waited his turn at Alabama, sitting for three years behind future pros like Reuben Foster and Reggie Ragland. The 2017 season was his time to shine, and shine he did. Evans was a second-team All-SEC pick in 2017, starting 12 games, tying for the team lead with 74 tackles, leading the team with 13 tackles for loss, making six sacks, and breaking up three passes.
- Great speed
- Best blitzer in the class
- Solid array of pass rush moves
- Gap responsibility
- High football IQ
- Powerful tackler
Analysis: Rashaan Evans is not your prototypical inside linebacker, instead standing out as a new breed of backers taking roam in the NFL. Evans had great speed that he utilizes sideline-to-sideline or when blitzing/rushing the passer. He works around the trash when scraping. Able to pace to the perimeter with the jet sweepers and scat-backs. Patient against misdirection and isn’t easily baited out of position. He does not give up gap responsibility often. His mentors, Reuben Foster and Reggie Ragland have taught him the ways of the linebacker position. He is the most explosive blitzer in this draft class—putting on his tape and watching him rush the passer is a thing of beauty–and if you missed your assignment he would make your quarterback pay with pain. Edge rushing skills are elite. His burst as a delayed blitzer from inside linebacker spot is too much for most linemen to catch.
- Not very instinctive
- A tad slow diagnosing plays
- Separation against blockers
- Not sold on his coverage abilities
- Can get swallowed up by larger lineman
Analysis: It was obvious watching Rashaan Evans tape, he is a step slow diagnosing plays and doesn’t have the best instincts you look for in a middle linebacker. His speed can get the best of him, his fast flow ahead of blockers can allow for cutbacks. Can get wired to climbing blockers. If a larger lineman gets his paws on Evans, he has trouble separating from that block. He had the best defensive front in all of college football ahead of him, so it will be interesting to see how he will play without those behemoths in front. Will wait rather than trigger when downhill shots are available. Will need to trust his athletic ability to squeeze routes tighter. Nagging groin injury plagued him last season. Scouts have some concerns about durability.
Scout’s Take: “He made a lot of progress as an inside backer from last year to this. He was more instinctive and a lot more natural.” — AFC area scout
Final Thoughts: I am very intrigued to see where Evans goes and how that NFL team will use him. I don’t see him as a true inside linebacker in the pros–his best traits shine when he is rushing the passer, but if a team moves him around and let’s him go after the quarterback, look out–he could be causing nightmares for years.
Draft Grade: 1st Round
NFL Comparison: CJ Mosley
Draft Projection: Top 25
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