In the last few weeks, we’ve been going position-by-position and previewing this year’s draft class. Before we get into the reports though, it’s important that we explain how our grading scale works. As a scouting staff, we use common terminology to grade every trait that we evaluate. We use a 1-9 scale with a 1 representing a “Reject” grade and a 9 meaning a “Rare” grade for whatever trait we are evaluating. We spend a lot of time in our internal Scout School making sure that our scales are calibrated with one another, and this common scale and set of language is a key aspect to ensuring that our evaluations are consistent (that…and cross-checks).
Additionally, for each position in the book, there are positional grading scales. As opposed to grading traits, these scales apply to stacking the final grades for each prospect.
The final Will Linebacker scale is as follows:
|9.0 – 7.0||High-end 3 down starter. Pro Bowl level.|
|6.9 – 6.7||Strong starter who plays on all 3 downs.|
|6.6 – 6.5||Low-end starter. 3rd down coverage LB.|
|6.2||Versatile backup with positional flexibility|
|6.1 – 6.0||Developmental. Top traits but needs time.|
|5.9||Top backup. Quality special teamer.|
|5.8||Average backup. Quality special teamer|
|5.7||Low-end backup LB with growable upside.|
For this preview, we will look at Notre Dame Will Linebacker Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah.
Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah: WLB 1 of 16 | Final Grade: 6.8
Report by Jeff Dean
Owusu-Koramoah has the speed, coverage ability, and versatility teams crave in today’s NFL, and he should be able to make an immediate impact as a space linebacker.
Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah’s primary position is Will linebacker in Notre Dame’s base 3-4 defense. He played in 27 career games with 25 starts. He missed most of the 2018 season with a broken foot. He is a high-quality athlete who is a bit undersized for the linebacker position, but shows the top-end speed, acceleration, and quick twitch to play anywhere on the field. He has a chiseled frame that could stand to add more bulk if he retains his athleticism. He is a fierce competitor who shows up in big games and plays with a chip on his shoulder.
Owusu-Koramoah is very good in coverage and looks comfortable in either zone or man schemes. He has a quick and smooth drop back in zone and keeps his eyes on the quarterback while feeling routes around him. He passes off receivers well and has a firm understanding of route design. He can play shallow or deep and has the burst to close quickly after the catch, but he doesn’t make many plays with the ball in the air. He has the hips and speed to keep up with receivers down the field and keeps his feet active to react to breaks. Owusu-Koramoah lines up all over the field and was asked to cover running backs, tight ends, and receivers due to his comfortability in space. He is also a good blitzer and can cause problems for blockers with his combination of speed, aggression, and deceptive strength.
Owusu-Koramoah has good football IQ and discipline to consistently make plays in the run game and backfield. He diagnoses plays and reads blocking schemes well before exploding. Although he is a ferocious tackler and delivers numerous big hits, his tackling form lapses at times and he will miss on occasion while going for the highlight hit. Owusu-Koramoah’s impact between the tackles is suspect at times, as he works better out in space. He prefers to attack blockers rather than anchor against them. He sheds blocks well but can struggle to meet linemen at the line of scrimmage and hold the point of attack. He has very good range and can make plays sideline to sideline without sacrificing depth on his tackles.
Owusu-Koramoah projects as an impressive Will linebacker who fits best in a 4-3 defense, but could also work in a 3-4 if he adds weight to handle the box more adequately. He is a three-down linebacker whose range and explosion will serve him well on run downs before excelling in passing situations from all over the field. He often looks to be one of the fastest players on the field and has a ferocious playing style, which would project very highly to special teams duties if necessary.
|Play speed and range||Handling linemen|
|Comfortability in coverage||Impact in the box|
|Alignment versatility||Slightly undersized|
|Year||Broken Tackles||BT%||Tackle Share||ATD+||PBU||Deserved Catch %||YAC||EPA||Man||Zone||Total|
|Pass Rush||Total Points||Total Points Rtg|
|Year||Blitz%||Pres%||Sack%||Run Def||Pass Rush||Pass Cov||Total||Per|