Mike Jones Jr. 2023 NFL Draft Scouting Report
- Clemson transfer
- One-year starter at LSU (34 tackles, 1 sack)
- Scheme tendencies: More impactful as a nickel linebacker
- 2022 projected role: Starting inside linebacker
Pros: Mike Jones Jr.’s best trait as a football player appears to be his athleticism. When aligned in the nickel linebacker position, Jones does a great job of making impact plays. In pass coverage, Jones has the speed to carry receivers vertically 20-plus yards up the field. He also shows to have good lateral agility in zone coverage where he can read the quarterback’s eyes and jump routes to disrupt plays. Jones also appears to be a good tackler in space. Jones does a good job of closing to ball carriers and making the tackle, making him an efficient tackler on the perimeter.
Cons: Mike Jones Jr. needs to improve as an inside linebacker. Right now, Jones is best as a nickel linebacker but that doesn’t give him true three-down ability. As an inside linebacker, Jones appears to struggle at times reading his run keys and playing downhill. Because Jones is late to read and react, it allows offensive linemen to climb to him and take him out of the play. Once engaged with offensive linemen, Jones does not have the functional strength to quickly disengage and has to free himself by spinning out of the block. This opens up his gap responsibility and leaves a hole in the defense.
Mike Jones Jr. NFL Draft Scouting Report by Keith Sanchez