Ryan LaCasse   DE/LB   Syracuse

Strengths

Ryan shows a good burst off the line and excellent quickness to the QB.  He has excellent strength and is the type of player that never stops working until the whistle blows.  He has nice long arms and shows very good change of direction skills.  He is a smart kid and understands situational football.  Ryan shows leadership skills through his play on the field and has the ability to make the players around him better. 

 

Needs to Improve

Ryan did a very good job for his college team at DE, but that's not the position for him at the next level.  Ryan will have to move to the LB position for the team that drafts him and this sets back his LTI ratio.  But it should not be a problem -- he should be a hell of a LB at the next level. 

 

Talent Board Round   4

There is no doubt in my mind that this kid will make an excellent MLB or OLB at the next level.  He has the size, the athletic talent and the work ethic.  All the ingredients are there for a future Pro Bowl LB.  It will take a year or two, but if the team that drafts him is patient and waits for it all to come together, they will be rewarded -- big time.  In this draft there are a lot of very good LB’s, but most of them do not have the size that Ryan has.  A smart team will take Ryan sometime on the first day of this draft, but most likely, he will be a second day pick.  Ryan does have to learn a new position and it will affect his LTI.  Personally for me, if I had a veteran MLB that had just a few more years left on his contract, I would jump on this kid no later than the third round.  That would be a perfect scenario for this kid to learn and as he does, he will impact on special teams.  Ryan is going to be a hell of a player at the next level.  There is not a bigger sleeper in this draft than Ryan; he is my definition of a sleeper in the draft.  He doesn’t play for a small team on the outskirts of Bulgaria – he plays for a big time program and is on the field all the time and still no one seems to see him.   I call him Ryan (Casper) LaCasse because like a friendly ghost, no one seems to see him on the field; however, his impact when the game is over is scary good.
by Drew Boylhart

THR

April 2006