LB Quay Walker, Georgia

6’4” – 240 lbs.

Background:

Georgia local and four-star recruit who increasingly rotated into the defense for his first three seasons, totaling six tackles as a freshman, 23-3.5-2.5 as a sophomore, and 43-2.0-1.0 as a junior. Became a full-time starter this past year, replacing 2021 third-round pick Monty Rice and finishing with a 67-5.5-1.5 line to conclude his collegiate career.

Positives:

Production escalated each season. Able to play both inside and on the edge; predominantly an inside ‘backer in college. Tall with long arms and the frame to add more bulk if needed. Shows discipline and patience when reading keys and when on the backside. Keeps his shoulders square between the tackles. Gets good extension to lock out blockers and locate the football. Attacks blocks with aggression and has enough power in his hands to discard when needed. Explosiveness in a short area is impressive. Does a nice job of navigating through congestion. Looks like he has solid wrap tackling technique. Controlled footwork and nice technique when playing in zone coverage; consistently keeps the play in front of him. Looks comfortable carrying running backs across the field. Closes pretty quickly when he finds a lane as a quarterback spy. Able to make it out to the sidelines and pick up tackles in the screen game when shaded over. Pretty smooth change-of-direction skills when rushing off the edge. Nice power on contact and active hands as an interior rusher.

Negatives:

One-year starter who didn’t make a ton of splash plays and rotated off the field fairly regularly. May need to add additional bulk; listed weight as a freshman was the same as it was this past season. Doesn’t quite play as fast as his athletic tools would suggest; can look a little bit tentative at times, like he’s not trusting his reads. Saw him struggle to locate a little bit when functioning as the read man on option plays. Responsibilities in coverage were a little bit limited; would have liked to see some deeper drops and more work in man. Production as an edge rusher was modest, although he only played limited snaps there.

Summary:

A big linebacker who has the size, strength, and toughness to take on blocks and defend against the inside run, but who is also athletic enough to work in coverage, he has an intriguing set of traits but can be a little bit slow to diagnose plays, likely a result of his limited starting experience. An interesting prospect who could end up being a better pro than college player as he develops his instincts/recognition skills. Could theoretically play either outside or inside in either an even or odd front, but might be best as the weak inside ‘backer in a 3-4 defense.

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