I watch a lot of college football. On the several occasions that I watched the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets this season, linebacker Quayshawn Nealy stood out as an intriguing prospect.
Nealy has put together an impressive resume as a 3 year starter with the Yellow Jackets. This past season Nealy was the leader of the GT defense with 90 combined tackles with 55 solo tackles. The linebacker also had 1.5 sacks and 2 interceptions. This is the type of productivity that NFL draft scouts love to see at the linebacker position.
Oct 25, 2014; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets linebacker Quayshawn Nealy (54) breaks off of the line of scrimmage against the Pittsburgh Panthers during the fourth quarter at Heinz Field. Georgia Tech won 56-28. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Nealy is best suited to be a weak side interior linebacker in the 3-4 defense, though he did do well in the GT 4-3 base defense.
At 6′ 2″ and 23b lbs. he is a bit smaller than the ideal middle linebacker in the NFL. He makes up for it with good quickness and pretty exceptional athletic ability.
Nealy is probably a 2nd or 3rd round talent. He needs to get better at taking better pursuit angles. He needs to play a little more on his toes, a bit more aggressive suggesting he needs to make quicker reads. He needs to get better at fighting off blocks and avoiding blocks all together when possible.
Nealy has freakish talent and flashes it often. He is not a sure fire first round linebacker, but he may have the most upside in the draft at the linebacker position. When he gets his hands on the football, there is a good chance that he will take it to the end zone for 6 points.
He does a good job of following the QB’s eyes in pass coverage. He has the lateral quickness needed to play well in zone coverage. Above all else he is a hard hitter budding with potential. He is pretty good but sometimes he can be great.
Overall, he makes a good prospect the New York Giants should consider drafting, who would have tremendous value after the 1st round. He could end up being quite the hidden gem for Big Blue for years to come under the right coaching and leadership.