Sam Schneider | April 21st, 2020
Patrick Queen, LB, LSU, #8
Weight: 227 lbs
Games Watched: UCF (Fiesta Bowl, 2019), Alabama (2019), Oklahoma (2019), Texas (2019), Clemson (CFP Championship 2019)
His physical gifts notwithstanding, Queen could once have been considered “undersized” for a linebacker. However, the position has rapidly become more of a hybrid prototype in the NFL as dependable linebackers are more and more often replaced by safeties in defensive packages that feature a nickel base and defer to the dime often. The reigning defensive Most Valuable Player of the CFP championship can fill the need of a traditional linebacker while still adapting to the changing schemes of defense in today’s NFL. Let’s have a look at why Queen will be a three-down ‘backer at the next level.
For more of the top player profiles, you can find them here.
|Tackling||8/10 Does not miss tackles but occasionally misses wraps. Style of going low results in very few yards after the catch but is given to allowing an extra yard or two that can be corrected easily.|
|Processing/Reads||8.5/10 Recognizes coverages immediately and follows motion in running backs and tight ends with ease. Appears to know when to fall back from a blitz call based on quarterback audibles.|
|Blitz||7.5/10 Queen ran a 4.5 in the 40 and it shows on tape. He is explosive through the line when brought close and employs a solid edge technique with a nasty spin move often. The main issue is his tendency to over pursue, taking himself behind the ball carrier and consequently out of the play. The aggressiveness is admirable, but he occasionally leaves the play entirely.|
|Coverage||9.5/10 Plays like a safety with more meat. Has the speed and tracking to cover tight ends, running backs and the occasional slot receiver. He keeps his body square to the ball, putting himself in a position to break up plays even against a more fleet-footed opponent.|
|Pursuit||10/10 Best trait. Patient enough to take a split second before attacking and can track a ball-carrier all over the field. Ignores traffic as though it isn’t there and flies to the ball with reckless abandon. He is always there when the play ends.|
|Strength||8.5/10 He won’t be the strongest defender on the field but plays with such adrenaline that he can hit like a freight train.|
|Versus the Run||8/10 Will meet a back in the middle of the line but needs to play catchup if the ball gets outside of the hash marks. Again, his closing speed is elite so while he may be late to the party, he’ll be there before it ends.|
|Block Shedding||7.5/10 Queen can break a block in the middle of the field as well as anyone and can make a tackle in coverage. However, in a blitz or stack-up situation at the line of scrimmage, he can have a hard time breaking away from a much larger lineman.|
|5/5 Has not displayed an issue regardless of how hard he goes during games, although he has only played one full season, for all intents and purposes. He came up lame with a hamstring injury at the combine but was likely just a result of pushing too hard, as most draft-eligible players do.|
|Turnover potential||3/5 After a full season in 2019, Queen came up with one fumble and one interception. I expect the latter number to rise in a sixteen-game season at the next level, as he drops into coverage far more often.|
|Intangibles||9/10 He was the emotional leader of the defense that won the national championship in his junior season and does not fall into today’s linebacker trap of going too hard. He has the ability at a young age to become an emotional leader in the league immediately and then carry that torch for years to come.|
|Overall||84.5/100 Someone is going to get a day one starter in Queen, and I would not be surprised if someone traded up to do it. He played inside for LSU but projects to a weakside linebacker in the NFL based on his build and ability in coverage. His attitude could make him a vocal team leader for years to come, which would be a plus for any team.
Round Grade: First Round
Projected Draft Position: Second half of the first-round
Player Comp: Myles Jack
Questions and comments?
Hit us up on the Socials:
Check out our Facebook Group where you can read and post articles at The Scorecrow
Reddit Group where everyone can post without fear of being banned at The Scorecrow
Follow Sam Schneider on Twitter @BuyAndSellYou
Main Image Credit: Embed from Getty Images