John Simon   DE   Ohio St

TALENT BOARD ROUND  3

 

STRENGTHS

John has the football intelligence and skills to play more than one position for the front seven of the team that drafts him.  He is a systems player who will need to be in the right defense to impact.  He is an “attack the line of scrimmage player” who exhibits leadership through his play on the field.  He is a head up, wrap up, squeeze and drive tackler and has the athleticism to make plays in the open field.  John will give you his best on every play.  He has good feet and decent change of direction skills as well as nice explosion off the line of scrimmage.  John has been playing defensive end for his college team, but his impact position will be more as a stand-up linebacker in a 3-4 defense on the inside or outside or playing the “Joker” position in a 4-3 defense.  If you want to change the “culture” of your veteran, underperforming yet talented team, then draft John because John’s intangibles will give him the ability to improve the team that drafts him.   

 

CONCERNS

I don’t think this comes as a surprise to anyone; John is limited athletically to be a defensive end for the team that drafts him.  He will have to learn a new position which will take some time.  He will learn it and will become productive very quickly with experience; until he does, I’m sure he can impact on special teams.   

 

BOTTOM LINE

If you’re going to run a defense that uses a player who is moved around your front four as a fifth player attacking the line of scrimmage on every play, then draft John and draft him early. That position is called the “joker” and the idea behind it is to make the quarterback play the game “Marco Polo” all game long. The quarterback has to guess where the “joker” will be lined up on every down. This forces the quarterback to make the offensive line calls for blocking also. It’s a defensive system used best against a team that huddles and not as effective against no huddle teams. Teams that huddle up have less time at the line of scrimmage to make adjustments, but the no huddle teams have more time and can wait the Joker out. Once they identify him, they will take time at the line to make the needed adjustments. John would be very impactful in a Joker” system, which means he fits a 4-3 defense better than a 3-4 defense. This may affect what round teams are willing to draft John in. John is the type of player who will win a starting job from the more athletic player in front of him on the depth chart when that player gets hurt and comes off the field. Once that happens, John will never come off the field. There is a lot of Mike Vrabel (former OLB/DE for the New England Patriots) in John. Mike was the 3rd round pick of the Pittsburgh Steelers in the 1997 draft. After the Steelers, Mike went to the Patriots and became a core player on defense and a specialty player on offense. John is not as tall as Mike, which means John might not be on the line of scrimmage as a down lineman. Nevertheless, John has talent to impact because of the way he plays and that means he has the potential to start and become a core player for the team that drafts him this April.

 

Drew "The B.S. Detector" Boylhart

Apr/2013