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Tuesday, April 17, 2012
Draft profile: OLB Melvin Ingram

By Rich Cimini

Over the next nine days, we'll profile players in the draft, focusing primarily on players the Jets may choose in the first round (16th overall).

Player: Melvin Ingram, DE/OLB, South Carolina

Height/weight: 6-foot-1 1/2, 264 pounds

Scouts, Inc. ranking: 12th

Draft projection: First round (seventh to 16th)

Scouting report: Ingram is one of the most intriguing players in the draft because he can play so many positions -- DE, OLB and DT. I spoke to one scout who said Ingram can be a 4-3 MLB. A creative defensive coordinator could have a field day with him, lining him up in different spots. The Jets really like Ingram, perhaps enough to trade up a few spots. He's a fluid athlete with excellent wheels. (He was a 225-pound point guard in high school.) He scored three TDs last season, including a 68-yard run on a fake punt. The other two TDs were fumble recoveries. He ran the 40 in 4.71 seconds and his 10-yard split is 1.61, which shows his burst. The knock on Ingram is that he has short arms (31 1/2 inches). That may not seem like a big deal, but a pass rusher with short arms often struggles to disengage from blockers. He has been training with Broncos LB Von Miller.

Key Stat: He played four seasons at South Carolina, but started only one year, finishing with 21.5 sacks (10 last season).

Red flags: Missed the 2008 season with a broken foot.

In his own words: (On not starting until last season) "Just coming in, (I was) in a situation where there was somebody else better than me. I had to play my role on the team. I did whatever the team needed me to do. At that point and time it wasn't for me to be a starter ... I feel like playing so many roles helped me. I feel like my coach gave me the opportunity to show my athletic ability in every way."