NFL Draft Profile: Virginia ILB Jordan Mack

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The Los Angeles Rams are undergoing a defensive scheme and regime change. With that being said, former Pro Bowl starting inside linebacker Cory Littleton has departed via free agency. That leaves the Rams set to start Micah Kiser, a former fifth-round pick and one of their young crop of inexperienced talent. While the Rams have talent and potential at the position, one could make the argument that they will need to look in the NFL Draft early on for a replacement to Littleton.

That replacement could very well be Virginia linebacker Jordan Mack who comes from the same school as current projected starting linebacker Micah Kiser.

College Bio

The Virginia four-year starting linebacker started off his career as the first true freshman in school-history since Ahmad Brooks in 2003 to start a season opener. In his sophomore season, Mack finished fifth in the ACC with 114 tackles becoming the third member of his team to amass 100-plus tackles on the year. In his junior year, he started nine games until his season was cut short due to an ankle injury. His final season he started almost every game for the Cavaliers except the Orange bowl he was forced to undergo season-ending surgery to repair the aforementioned ankle injury that bothered him and caused him to miss the tail end of last season. During his time with Virginia, he was a team captain and a Campbell Trophy Finalist.

Measurables

Height: 6’3
Weight: 241

Strengths

Mack is a rangy linebacker that can operate sideline-to-sideline. He’s got great size at 6-foot-3 and 241 pounds and isn’t afraid to do anything on the football field. Over his four years at Virginia, he’s become a great blitzing linebacker which was shown his last season finishing with 7.5 sacks. Mack’s mental processing is above average which allows him to get the jump start on plays and crash through the b gap. He’s got the reactionary quickness you look for in a player and a linebacker that plays smart more often than not. He tends to take the right angles almost all of the time. Started all four years at Virginia.

Weaknesses

Mack’s 2019 campaign was followed by ankle surgery which could be something to keep an eye on. Zero ball production in college, batting only one pass and coming down with zero interceptions. Struggles to fight through trash and gets caught on blocks. Gets caught guessing too much and misses his mark. Tackling can be an issue due to inconsistent form. Isn’t a finisher as a tackler. Doesn’t consistently stand out on film. Lacks the coverage skills one would need to have at the next level. Lack of coverage skills is surprising due to his background as a defensive back.

Three Plays on Tape

Development

Jordan Mack is a future starting linebacker at the next level. However, to call him a day one starter would be a bit premature. While Mack started all four seasons at Virginia, he still has a lot of improvements to make in the area of his coverage game. While Mack brings a lot to the table, he still needs to improve as a tackler. With that being said, getting the surgery to repair his ankle could definitely be something that helps him seeing as he was likely playing through that pain all of last year. Not to mention, playing special teams and working his way into the league could be the best fit for Mack to eventually build him up into a fine linebacker. The ceiling for Mack if he improves his coverage skills and overall tackling ability could lead him down the road of being a 10-year veteran starting linebacker.

Draft Grade: Late 4th round

Bottom Line

Mack is not ready to start for a team immediately but he has the skills and overall traits you look for in a starter. Eventually, with the right coaching, Mack should develop into a seasoned NFL veteran starter. Even still, Mack can offer immediate production as a sub-package blitzing linebacker at the very worst. As far as the Rams go, Mack could definitely be an option if they do indeed miss out on the top linebackers on day two. He might not be ready to start but he would provide much-needed depth in the Rams linebacker room.

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