Photo of Luke Kuechly
Drafted By: Panthers
  • Round 1
  • Pick 9
  • Overall 9

Combine Results

Grade
91.0 ?
  • 4.58 SEC
    Top Performer
  • 27 REPS
    Top Performer
  • 38.0 INCH
    Top Performer
  • 123.0 INCH
    Top Performer
  • 6.92 SEC
    Top Performer
  • 4.12 SEC
    Top Performer
  • 11.43 SEC
    Top Performer
Blue Star  =  Combine Top Performer

Draft Analysis:

Mayock's take: "I call him Clark Kent, and he can turn into Superman on Saturdays and Sundays. He's one of the cleanest players in this draft. His instincts and his pass-coverage ability might be the best of any linebacker I've seen come out of the draft."

  • 6'3" Height
  • 31" Arm Length
  • 242LBS. Weight
  • 9 3/4" Hands

Overview

Kuechly had one of the most productive careers, in terms of tackles, in recent memory for a collegiate linebacker. Twelve tackles for loss is a testament to his overall ability and instincts to get in the backfield. He is more of an athlete than given credit for and has simply been a machine throughout his college career. Kuechly has all the tools to be an immediate starter in the NFL and shore up the middle of a defense.

Analysis

Strengths

Kuechly is one of the most instinctual and technically sound linebackers to enter the draft in years, and he had the tackle production throughout his career to back it up. He is able to avoid trash at his knees and is elite when it comes to shedding blockers and keeping himself free to the ball. He is excellent working over the top of tight ends to maul and delay their release, and is capable of running with them down the field. He has the sudden burst and long speed to cover a very wide range against the run and is an extremely sure-handed tackler.

Weaknesses

The major knock on Kuechly is that he had a lot of "inflated" tackle production in college: i.e., most of his tackles came five-to-eight yards downfield. He didn't get up into the line of scrimmage to make powerful, impactful plays much, and won't be relied upon as a pass rusher at the next level, where he'll be strictly a tackling, sideline-to-sideline backer.
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Grade Title Draft (Round) Description
96-100 Future Hall of Famer Top Pick A once-in-a-generation type prospect who could change how his position is played
85-95 Immediate Starter 1st An impact player with the ability/intangibles to become a Pro Bowl player. Expect to start immediately except in a unique situation (i.e. behind a veteran starter).
70-84 Eventual Starter 2nd-3rd A quality player who will contribute to the team early on and is expected to develop into a starter. A reliable player who brings value to the position.
50-69 Draftable Player 4th-7th A prospect with the ability to make team as a backup/role player. Needs to be a special teams contributor at applicable positions. Players in the high range of this category might have long-term potential.
20-49 Free Agent UDFA A player with solid measurables, intangibles, college achievements, or a developing skill that warrants an opportunity in an NFL camp. In the right situation, he could earn a place on a 53-man roster, but most likely will be a practice squad player or a camp body.

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