LB Drue Tranquill, Notre Dame

6’2” – 234 lbs. – 4.57
Started three of eleven games played as a freshman before sustaining a torn ACL, then suffered another season-ending ACL injury three games into the following year. Became a starter the following year and totaled 79 tackles and an interception as a safety. Converted to linebacker in 2017 and picked up 85-10.5-1.5, following that up with 75-9.0-3.5 this past year. Two-time team captain. Size and length are decent for a weakside linebacker; more like a big safety, which is unsurprising given his background. Pretty good athlete who does a nice job of reading keys and flowing toward the ball; has the raw speed to roam sideline-to-sideline and make tackles near the boundaries. Closes fast and can deliver some big hits to help set the tone defensively, although his radius is constrained by his lack of length. Has good functional strength which allows him to hold up better than anticipated against blockers, although his lack of length can cause him to get stuck on opponents for too long; is active with his hands when engaged. Was an every-down player at the college level, and his work in coverage may be the most impressive element of his game. Was often working in short zones or serving as a quarterback spy, playing with a low center of gravity and keeping the play in front of him so he could plant and drive on a spot; however, would also shade over opposing receivers or tight ends and carry them downfield. Does a good job of placing his hands and using them to provide tight coverage through the route stem. Flips his hips easily and has no problem running with them into the seam. Capable of carrying running backs out of the backfield. Does a good job of diagnosing route combinations and sniffing out screens. Improved his stock with a strong Combine in which he ran well, leapt 37.5”, and put up thirty-one reps on the bench. One of the draft’s most comfortable linebackers when it comes to working in coverage, his play at the college level suggests that at a minimum he should be able to eventually work his way onto the field in sub packages and as a special-teams contributor. Assuming he checks out medically after suffering two torn ACLs in college, his combination of athleticism, leadership, and instincts should draw the attention of plenty of teams on draft day.

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