Everson Griffen   DE/LB   USC

TALENT BOARD

 Round 2


STRENGTHS

Everson is a stand-up DE with excellent speed and change of direction skills to rush the passer.  He is strong at the point of attack and does an excellent job using his hands to keep offensive lineman away from his body so that he can get off blocks and make tackles in the run defense.  Everson is smart and understands his assignments; he looks to be very coachable along with being a good teammate.  Teams using a 3-4 defense should be very interested in drafting Everson because in his college defense, Everson was used as both a down lineman and as a stand up rush the passer DE who played on either side of the defensive line. 

 

NEEDS TO IMPROVE

Although Everson looks and plays at times like a linebacker, he was not used very much in pass coverage and did not do much dropping off the line into passing lanes.  He will have to go to the combine and prove that he has those LB abilities if he wants to move up in this draft.  From what I see on the field, I think he has those skills but he will have to slim down to see if he can gain some quickness.  Everson is fast, but not quick.  This means that as a DE in a 4-3, he will have to learn the tricks of the trade and will need good coaching to free him up to rush the passer. 

    

BOTTOM LINE

Everson is a good solid player with excellent overall skills to play in different types of defensive systems.  He just doesn't have that lightning quick burst that a true pass rusher needs to have to be the type of player offensive coordinators need to be aware of when game planning.  Right now, Everson is an effort DE and if you make a mistake defending him, he will make you pay.  He looks on film to be a quality type of kid that every defense needs to be successful.  If you team him with the right players, this kid becomes a star.  If you are expecting him to be your main man, that might be a mistake on your part.  If you are a good coach, you can't lose drafting this kid in any round providing you have enough skill players around him.  Personally, I think if he slims down (and this is not a knock on his weight, just an observation), he just might be a hell of a MLB in the right system.  I think you have a lot of options with this kid and he could sneak into the first round if his workout numbers are outstanding.  In my opinion, I think that he fits the New England Patriots' defensive system really well. 

 

Drew Boylhart  12/09