Monday, April 14, 2014
Daily draft dish: A sleeper at linebacker
By Rich Cimini
With draft day (May 8) rapidly approaching, we'll whet your apppetite with a daily factoid, courtesy of ESPN Stats & Information. We'll keep it New York Jets-centric, sticking to team needs, possible selections, trends, etc.
Even though they re-signed outside linebacker Calvin Pace, the Jets still need a speed rusher on the edge, someone who can help ease the burden on their interior players and grow into a full-time role in a year or two. There could be an interesting candidate in the second round, BYU's Kyle Van Noy (6-3, 243 pounds).
Van Noy's overall production dipped last season, but he still managed to generate consistent heat on the passer. In fact, he recorded 35 pressures (hurries and knockdowns). Only four linebackers from BCS automatic-qualifying conferences accumulated more pressures than Van Noy.
His sack total dropped significantly from 2012 (from 13 to four), but Van Noy put up impressive numbers across the board, demonstrating his all-around skills. Over the last two seasons: 39.5 tackles-for-loss, 123 tackles, four interceptions and 12 pass break-ups.