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Savage: BYU's Van Noy ranks as top Senior Bowl OLB

BYU linebacker Kyle Van Noy was rated as the most impressive outside linebacker at the Reese's Senior Bowl, ahead of Florida State's Christian Jones and Georgia Tech's Jeremiah Attaochu, according to Senior Bowl executive director and former Cleveland Browns general manager Phil Savage.

Van Noy had a strong practice week and came up with a sack of Virginia Tech's Logan Thomas in the game. He's on the cusp of NFL Media analyst Bucky Brooks' Big Board, rating on the bubble behind the draft's top 25 prospects.

"Kyle was the most complete outside linebacker on the North and South rosters because of his combination of athleticism in space, his ability to stack the run at the point-of-attack and his overall pass-rushing skills," Savage said. "He can play on or off the line of scrimmage and appeared equally secure in defending the run or pass. In reality, he is versatile enough to fit the 3-4 or 4-3 systems and play in Sub as a rusher or coverage defender. Kyle should become a starter early on and enjoy a productive NFL career."

Savage projects Van Noy as an NFL starter within his first two seasons in the league.

Jones and Attaochu rated as Savage's Nos. 2 and 3 linebackers. Jones won six of seven one-on-one pass-rush drills, but Savage saw cause for concern with his run-stopping.

"He needs to be stouter at the POA and he has a finesse-oriented style as a pass rusher, but he was effective all week as a blitzer," Savage said. "In pass coverage, although the tight ends and running backs made receptions on him, he displayed the kind of body control and balance needed to defend the pass."

Savage called Attaochu "probably the most physically impressive looking OLB candidate in the game." He projected both Jones and Attaochu as potential starters or contributing backups at the NFL level.

Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter @ChaseGoodbread.

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