RECRUITMENT RATING: 5-star
WT: 231 lbs
Instincts/Processing: Does a more than adequate job of reading his keys and trusting his eyes. Exploits creases at the LOS to meet ball carriers in the alley as well. Just wish his process was quicker. His decisions of pursuit are usually correct, but it takes some time for him for him to process what he is seeing. Things don’t seem to click for him right away, but instincts are trending in the right direction.
Tackling: Inconsistent area of his game. Uses good form when tackling opponents head on. But struggles to gauge angles to the ball carrier in horizontal pursuit situations. Tends to over and under pursue in these instances. Perception of angles must improve at the next level. Also, leaves his feet to dive when attempting to tackle at times. Doesn’t do it as much as Devin White, but still something he could iron out.
Range: Has enough range to meet ball carriers at the sideline, but this isn’t elite by any means. First step isn’t overly twitchy either, so it takes some time for him to kick it in top gear. That said, would like to him be quicker to “get on his hoarse” (run at full speed) when scraping towards the sideline. Times where he moves at a lulled pace and gets beat to an angle. Looks much more explosive when running down hill than laterally. Change of direction skills are smooth but lack optimal twitch.
Block Management: Very aware of incoming lineman while keeping his eyes in the back field. Utilizes a swift punch to his opponents’ chest plate to establish control when engaging with blockers. Also does a great of sinking his hips using full body torque to discard them out of the way. “Stack and shed” technique is textbook.
Cover Skills: Exceptional at reading the Quarterback’s eyes in zone. Ability to cover ground in the intermediate parts of the field is insanely impressive for a linebacker. I say this with no exaggeration, but possesses ball skills of a safety and his ball production confirms that. Occasionally has some hiccups determining which receiver to carry with in zone. Needs to do a better job at passing receivers off. Also, wasn’t really asked to cover targets in man much, but has the skill set to do so.
Blitzing Skills: Uses down hill explosiveness to penetrate gaps in hurry. Very good at avoiding contact in these situations as well. Will be one of his calling cards at the next level.
Physicality/Competitive Toughness: Definitely physical enough to play the position, but wish he was a tad more aggressive. Stretches of games where it seems like he is playing with a lack of urgency. Would like to see him play with his hair on fire on a more consistent basis.
Best Trait: Cover Skills
Worst Trait: Processing Speed
Best Film: LSU (2018)
Worst Film: Oklahoma (2018)
Mack Wilson’s ability to cover, run sideline to sideline, read his keys, and deconstruct blocks translate perfectly to today’s an NFL. When comparing him to the other linebackers in this class, he might be the most well rounded (not best). He just needs to be more consistent with how quickly he processes things and tackling. But both traits seem to be trending in the right direction. If they continue to improve, he has pro bowl potential. A Mike Linebacker role in a 4-3 or in a 3-4 would be ideal for his skill set.
- Ledyard, Jon. “2019 NFL Draft Player Profile: Mack Wilson.” The Draft Network, 11 Feb. 2019, thedraftnetwork.com/2019/02/11/2019-nfl-draft-player-profile-mack-wilson/.