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Sunday, April 26, 2009

Patritos select OLB Tyrone McKenzie South Florida


The Patriots have a new OLB and his name is Tyrone McKenzie. Tyrone was a tackling machine at South Florida. Last season he had 116 tackles, 121 the year before and 129 the year before that. He had 15 tackles for a loss and 8 pass deflections last year. In his three seasons as SF he has 32 tackles for a loss. Anyone with those type of numbers at that level can flat out play football.
I think this guy can surprise people and will be a solid pro. I like this pick very much.


From NFL Draft Countdown

Strengths:
Excellent athleticism...Terrific speed and quickness with a burst to close...Outstanding sideline-to-sideline range...Nice instincts and awareness...Reliable tackler...Smooth and is able to match up in coverage...Comfortable in space...Active with a good motor...Great football IQ...Offers some versatility...Special teams potential...Good work ethic...Durable with a lot of experience...Impressive production.

Weaknesses:
Just average size and bulk...Can be too aggressive at times...Not very strong or physical...Isn't a big hitter...Has some trouble getting off blocks...Doesn't fill hard against the run...Average hands and ball skills...Uses sub par leverage...Is not much of a pass rusher or blitzer...Definitely isn't a thumper...Bounced around to three colleges.

Notes:
Nearly saw his football career come to an end as a junior in high school when he suffered a severely fractured leg, which required the insertion of a titanium rod to repair...Began his college career at Michigan St. in 2004...Transferred to Iowa St. and sat out the 2005 season...Started all 12 games at middle linebacker for the Cyclones and was named 2nd Team All-Big 12 in 2006...Opted to transfer yet again but was granted an NCAA hardship waiver and allowed to play without sitting for a year because his mother was sick...Was 2nd Team All-Big East in 2007 and earned 1st Team honors in 2008...Could project outside or inside at the next level depending on the scheme...Has a fantastic blend of physical tools and production and should test well in workouts...Won't be an ideal fit for everyone but should draw plenty of interest from teams willing to sacrifice size in exchange for speed and athleticism.

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