Continuing my series on the top ten prospects at each position, I want to take a look at this year’s class of linebackers. To make this clear – I differentiate between interior defensive linemen, edge rushers and off-the-ball linebackers. So this list won’t include guys like Arden Key or Harold Landry, who most would call 3-4 outside linebacker, because they primarily will still play on the line, despite maybe not putting their hand in the dirt a lot. So these upcoming prospects can be anywhere from true 4-3 middle linebackers to outside guys in a scheme with three down-linemen, if I think they will have a large role off the ball as well.
This linebacker class has a quadruple of headliners and then a bunch of guys, who I have rated very closely together. Of course, these lists deviate strongly depending from team to team, depending on their defensive scheme and what their coaches value. The trend that is clear with these guys though, is the fact, that the NFL is looking for more and more athletic guys at the position.