LB Josey Jewell, Iowa

6’1″ – 234 lbs. – 4.82

Started four of eleven games as a redshirt freshman, rotating heavily into the defense, then took over a starting role the following season, which he retained for the remainder of his collegiate career. A three-year captain who was regularly named an academic all-conference selection and even managed to win a team leader award in his redshirt season. Every-down player who lines up in the middle in the team’s base defense and stays on the field in the sub package. Despite just adequate height, bulk, and length for the position, is a hard-nosed linebacker who is willing to step into gaps and take on blockers to clog lanes in the run game. Good discipline with his run fits. However, ability to take on blocks is just average. Has a decent anchor but lack of length can allow opposing blockers to get into his pads and prevent him from making plays on the ball. Gives good effort and takes sound angles in pursuit; combination of solid athleticism and impressive feel allow him to find his way to the ball on a consistent basis. Willing to get physical with opposing ballcarriers but despite his eye-popping tackle statistics, lack of length causes him to miss some attempts. Forced four career fumbles. Has extensive coverage responsibilities, including some snaps in which he’s working in man. Exhibits sound footwork and gets good depth when working in zones. Has enough speed and agility to carry opponents down- or across the field when pattern-matching. Able to use his hands to disrupt some routes at the stem. Very good instincts. Does a good job of reading the quarterback’s eyes and driving on a spot. Able to bait quarterbacks into throws when playing underneath in bracket coverage. Plus ball skills; batted down twenty-six passes and intercepted six throws over the past three seasons. Had some production as a pass-rusher due to his motor, active hands, and above-average closing speed, but isn’t a major threat to generate pressure off the edge. A known quantity with over three years of starting experience in a major conference, and who offers the physicality, instincts, and leadership skills that teams look for in their linebackers. Won’t blow anyone away with his physical attributes, but managed to find his way to the ball on a consistent basis and projects as an asset in zone coverage as well as an adequate run defender.

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