Written by Jeff Risdon on August 13, 2015
One of the purposes of summer scouting is to develop a baseline for a player’s current skills. This helps frame the upcoming season performance. Did the player improve? Are his prior weak points dulled? Has he shown more NFL skills?
Under that backdrop I evaluated Notre Dame linebacker Jaylon Smith. The rising true junior from Fort Wayne has created many waves in South Bend with his strong athletic ability and speed. No. 9 on the defense has proven his versatility, lining up at Mike backer, rush OLB, weakside nickel backer and even as a pseudo slot corner.
Both Daniel Jeremiah of the NFL Network and Matt Miller from Bleacher Report have gone on record this summer to call Smith their top defensive prospects entering the season. Many in the online draft community have followed suit, praising Smith’s playing speed, range and power. Listed at 6’2” and 235 pounds, (read more…)