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View Full Version : Nate Irving - Why Rated So Low?


bigbluedefense
02-14-2011, 07:48 PM
I've only seen his youtube clips (i know, i know), but the guy looks really impressive.

He's high motor, great instincts, great tackler, has good speed, good range, fiery, I really don't have any major knocks on his game. He seems like a great 4-3 MIKE prospect.

So why is he rated so low? Am I missing something?

thenewfeature06
02-14-2011, 07:52 PM
I also think he can be a pretty good LB at the next level.

I think he was involved in a huge car accident maybe last year? The main thing for him I guess is just trying to get back into the aspects of everything.

descendency
02-14-2011, 07:54 PM
Best Mike LB in the draft...

and I'm not biased at all... (maybe just a little)

Don Vito
02-14-2011, 07:55 PM
I think Irving will be a very good 4-3 MLB, he is a little undersized though. He was in a very serious car accident that could have ended his career too but he has obviously recovered. I like Irving a lot, he has a lot of game speed and is a very talented and fiery linebacker.

bigbluedefense
02-14-2011, 07:59 PM
When was his car accident? Did he play at all this year?

ElectricEye
02-14-2011, 08:02 PM
When was his car accident? Did he play at all this year?

Yeah, REALLY well too. Had his best year by far.

As to why he's rated so low, he's an average athlete with average size. Really didn't look like a fight through blocks type of guy at the Senior Bowl, so that's something that limits him going forward. Really good all around game though.

Me Likey Rookies
02-14-2011, 08:03 PM
-gA-nz5OldA

this is this year

bigbluedefense
02-14-2011, 08:05 PM
Yeah, REALLY well too. Had his best year by far.

As to why he's rated so low, he's an average athlete with average size. Really didn't look like a fight through blocks type of guy at the Senior Bowl, so that's something that limits him going forward. Really good all around game though.

He seems pretty fast to me. Crap, I didn't even look for him at the Senior Bowl, I should have paid more attention. I was too busy jizzing over Von Miller.

He fights through blocks, the only thing I didn't see him do was blitz. 6 1" 235 isn't that bad. Isn't Curtis Lofton the same size? He's doing pretty darn good last time I checked.

With such a questionable MIKE class, I'm surprised a guy like Irving is rated behind so many guys.

How is he any less of an athlete than Quan for example? I need to see more of this guy, he's really sparked my interest.

bigbluedefense
02-14-2011, 08:08 PM
-gA-nz5OldA

this is this year

look at that. how is he slow? he looks like he plays fast. i'd guess he runs a 4.7 at least, which is more than enough for a MIKE.

great instincts, he's violent, great tackler, high motor, plays fast, good vs the run and pass, fiery, he can flow through traffic, what am I missing here?

great anticipation skills too. hell, i like him more than McClain from last year. To be fair, I wasn't a big McClain fan.

ElectricEye
02-14-2011, 08:12 PM
He seems pretty fast to me. Crap, I didn't even look for him at the Senior Bowl, I should have paid more attention. I was too busy jizzing over Von Miller.

He fights through blocks, the only thing I didn't see him do was blitz. 6 1" 235 isn't that bad. Isn't Curtis Lofton the same size? He's doing pretty darn good last time I checked.

With such a questionable MIKE class, I'm surprised a guy like Irving is rated behind so many guys.

How is he any less of an athlete than Quan for example? I need to see more of this guy, he's really sparked my interest.


I really just don't think he's going to time all that fast. He's got average lateral range and isn't real fluid.
He's a real good player, the type of guy who is going to find the ball and pile up a lot of tackles(ala Curtis Lofton as you mentioned)for you but won't be that next level of linebacker that you look for in the first two rounds.

bigbluedefense
02-14-2011, 08:15 PM
I really just don't think he's going to time all that fast. He's got average lateral range and isn't real fluid.
He's a real good player, the type of guy who is going to find the ball and pile up a lot of tackles(ala Curtis Lofton as you mentioned)for you but won't be that next level of linebacker that you look for in the first two rounds.

*drools at the thought of the Giants landing him in the 3rd*

some guys just know how to play. that's the impression i'm getting from him.

Me Likey Rookies
02-14-2011, 08:17 PM
I would not have a problem taking him in the 2nd. He might be there in the 3rd but I think we trade our 3rd to move up in the 1st. We are desperate for a leader on defense.

BamaFalcon59
02-14-2011, 08:17 PM
Great, great LB. One of the best defensive players VT came across this season.

bigbluedefense
02-14-2011, 08:20 PM
I would not have a problem taking him in the 2nd. He might be there in the 3rd but I think we trade our 3rd to move up in the 1st. We are desperate for a leader on defense.

Between Mason Foster, Bruce Carter, and now Nate Irving, it looks like 4-3 teams are going to have a very nice LB prospect fall to the 2nd round for them.

I like it. Now we need Nevis and other strictly 4-3 UTs to fall some too. I know they will. I missed out on Geno (</3) :(

Nebula
02-14-2011, 08:32 PM
You are vastly overrating the value of ILB's.. Nate Irving isn't going to get drafted in the 2nd round, more like 4th round

Like ElectricEye said, he's just an above average athlete and he is quite poor at taking on blocks and disengaging from them (which is not what you want your ILB to do). I think he can be a good WLB, though

thegreatone
02-14-2011, 09:07 PM
I don't see why he couldn't play in a 3-4...

DBNYDP
02-14-2011, 09:33 PM
He overpursues. Average size. Average athlete.
I really like him, and I think pre-accident his stock was more like Jones..I feel like he can still get there, so I'd take him in the 2nd or 3rd. Solid player. (I rather have Shepperd though, but I have a man crush on him so..)

Hines
02-14-2011, 09:39 PM
One of my favorite prospects in the whole draft. I want him on the Steelers sssssssssssssssoooooooooooooooooooooooo bad.

descendency
02-14-2011, 10:04 PM
I don't see why he couldn't play in a 3-4...

He has trouble shedding blockers. LOL@ 4th round talk.

Trust me, this guy will be off the board in the 2nd round. If Jerod Mayo can go 10th overall, this guy is a 2nd rounder at least.

He may not have "special athleticism" but he's a nasty football player. I'm afraid of what might happen if a good team gets him that needs a MLB.

FUNBUNCHER
02-14-2011, 10:14 PM
One of those prospects whose draft status could dramatically change with a beast combine performance.

If he can clock a sub 4.7 or faster and blow up his agility drills, he could easily be a top 50 pick, which IMO is high nowadays for a 43 Mike.

Mayo was a guy who was under the radar until he backed up his Vols game film with 4.5 speed.

Regardless, he's a future starter in the NFL and should be a great value pick for someone.

iBoldin
02-14-2011, 10:19 PM
What are his numbers like? I don't care, give me this football player because his on field production outweighs any potential 40 disappointments. I hope he doesn't suffer what Brandon Spikes had to because this guy is a phenomenal football player. If a 4-3 team gets this guy in the late-2nd to mid-3rd range they've got themselves a tremendous football player. "Average" speed or not.

1funguy
02-15-2011, 09:04 AM
He's a baller. Screw timed speed - the kid has very good instincts & is obviously a very determined young man to come back from a serious car accident & play as he did.

I'd definitely take a hard look at him for the Chargers if he's around in the 3rd. I feel pretty certain that he would bring a LOT to the table on ST as well.

BuddyCHRIST
02-15-2011, 09:14 AM
He's the man, I'd take him in the late first because he's one of those guys I just know will be a very good player at the least. Also didn't he weigh in at 243 at the Senior Bowl? Thats not bad size, Ray Lewis was probably smaller than that coming out.

bigbluedefense
02-15-2011, 10:00 AM
I'm about to hop on the bandwagon. He's got that nasty demeanor and physicality I look for in a linebacker.

Don Vito
02-15-2011, 10:07 AM
He's the man, I'd take him in the late first because he's one of those guys I just know will be a very good player at the least. Also didn't he weigh in at 243 at the Senior Bowl? Thats not bad size, Ray Lewis was probably smaller than that coming out.

He seems like a Raven to me, if he lasts long enough I could see the Ravens picking him up in the second. He would be a beast there even if his best fit is in a 4-3. Learning next to Lewis for a few years behind Ngata wouldn't be a bad way to break a young linebacker into the league.

diabsoule
02-15-2011, 10:24 AM
Between Mason Foster, Bruce Carter, and now Nate Irving, it looks like 4-3 teams are going to have a very nice LB prospect fall to the 2nd round for them.

I like it. Now we need Nevis and other strictly 4-3 UTs to fall some too. I know they will. I missed out on Geno (</3) :(

Agreed. The Saints need at least two linebackers in this draft and Irving, if he can play OLB, will definitely be on the radar.

Funny, Giants and Saints needs are fairly similar this year.

bigbluedefense
02-15-2011, 10:32 AM
Agreed. The Saints need at least two linebackers in this draft and Irving, if he can play OLB, will definitely be on the radar.

Funny, Giants and Saints needs are fairly similar this year.

Yeah, we both need to tweak the oline, and we need LBs. I think the Saints could use a DE too. If Robert Quinn is there...you gotta take him.

I think Irving is more of a traditional MIKE. Foster and Carter can definitely play OLB. I think Lloyd will probably be a sleeper at WILL.

There are no elite 4-3 LBs in this draft, but a lot of underrated guys who will be there in the 2nd and 3rd round. Just further proof that the 4-3 defense is where it's at nowadays.

Although if you're a 3-4 team, you gotta be jizztastic at all the dline/pass rusher prospects in the 3-4 this year.

TheFinisher
02-15-2011, 10:39 AM
I like Irving, he plays with a lot of passion for the game and has some good instincts. That being said he's not as athletic or fluid as you would think with average closing speed and struggles when he has to break down and wrap up a ballcarrier in space. He has a hard time getting off blocks which is essential as an inside backer, but that can possibly be fixed with some coaching. He's pretty good when he can play downhill and deliver a phonebooth hit in the hole but his athleticism/size will limit what he can do at the next level.

Mid 3rd- Mid 4th

AntoinCD
02-15-2011, 10:41 AM
Yeah, we both need to tweak the oline, and we need LBs. I think the Saints could use a DE too. If Robert Quinn is there...you gotta take him.

I think Irving is more of a traditional MIKE. Foster and Carter can definitely play OLB. I think Lloyd will probably be a sleeper at WILL.

There are no elite 4-3 LBs in this draft, but a lot of underrated guys who will be there in the 2nd and 3rd round. Just further proof that the 4-3 defense is where it's at nowadays.

Although if you're a 3-4 team, you gotta be jizztastic at all the dline/pass rusher prospects in the 3-4 this year.

I agree there's no elite guys but I think pre-injury Carter could have been up there and possibly a top 15 pick. I also suppose it depends on what teams view both Von Miller and Akeem Ayers as. Both could be top 15 picks for either 34 or 43 teams.

bigbluedefense
02-15-2011, 10:43 AM
I agree there's no elite guys but I think pre-injury Carter could have been up there and possibly a top 15 pick. I also suppose it depends on what teams view both Von Miller and Akeem Ayers as. Both could be top 15 picks for either 34 or 43 teams.

I'm not an Ayers fan in any defense. Classic looks like Tarzan plays like Jane prospect.

I love Von. He's going to be overdrafted, but as a player, love him. I just like him a lot more in an attacking 4-3 defense.

I've stated it before, he's Wilbur Marshall to me. Put him in an attacking 4-3 and let him blitz a lot, and just watch him take over games.

AntoinCD
02-15-2011, 10:55 AM
I'm not an Ayers fan in any defense. Classic looks like Tarzan plays like Jane prospect.

I love Von. He's going to be overdrafted, but as a player, love him. I just like him a lot more in an attacking 4-3 defense.

I've stated it before, he's Wilbur Marshall to me. Put him in an attacking 4-3 and let him blitz a lot, and just watch him take over games.

Im warming to Miller in a 43. Absolutely hate him in the 34 though.

The thing with Ayers is guys with his blend of size/speed etc will have people salivating. He plays extremely soft and once you block him it's over, but some team will think he could be great and take him way too high. He's another guy better suited for an attacking 43 though. I think Spags could make him work in St Louis

TACKLE
02-15-2011, 11:08 AM
To answer the OP in more general terms, a lot of 4-3 LB's are being underrated. I think it mainly has to do with the fact that 4-3 LB, especially OLB, has become arguably the least valued position in the league. A lot of it has to do with the growth of the 3-4 defense, but also with the growth of the passing game the emphasis is now on pass rushers and DB's. I'm under the idea that Jon Beason is the best LB (excluding 3-4 OLB's) in the league and there's probably only 2 maybe 3 elite 4-3 LB's out there (Beason, Urlacher, Briggs?). Though its hard to say that the position is undervalued. There really aren't many true impact players playing LB in a 4-3 right now. Also we've seen plenty of 4-3 defenses succeed with mediocre talent and later round picks as starting at LB. It'd be nice to see some young LB's come in the league and be impact players in the 4-3 so we can see a rise in talent at that position.

SchizophrenicBatman
02-15-2011, 10:36 PM
I think his stock issue is a multitude of factors. First off, the LB thing people have talked about. He played MLB this year and I suppose that is what he projects to (in the 4-3) in the NFL but he also played outside early in his career and many fans questioned the move to the middle because he had played so well before

Then the injuries. Not just from the car crash but even before that he was pretty injury prone and missed games. I suppose that's also why people knock his size even if he's only slightly undersized. With that said, he played a full season this year and when he's in games he's in for as many snaps as possible

When you have a couple things like that working against you I guess you have to be a standout athlete to go high in the draft. He's not slow for a LB but he's not going to pop off a 4.3 like a Bruce Carter will either. Now with that said, his game speed is more than adequate. He plays sideline to sideline and has excellent burst when he gets free up the middle. Great instincts. The very definition of a "gamer." But he isn't perfect. He does overpursue a little (though I think that was coached to some degree this year by Jon Tenuta) and he'll miss a tackle now and then (in pursuit, rarely up the middle). I suppose if he was going to go round 1 with his measurables and injury concerns he'd have to be perfect. As someone who has watched him from day 1 in college his game speed is no concern to me even at the next level. Stiffness, maybe. But he should be fine and I think he's capable of being an every down player

All I know is that he has been the heart and soul of the NC State defense his entire career. Prior to last season he didn't have much talent around him and the defense was poor with him and absolutely abhorrent without him. This year it was good to very good with him and maybe slightly below average without. He has a knack for making big plays and I'm absolutely confident he will stick on an NFL roster.

Probably the biggest thing I can say is that NC State's record in games he played since becoming a starter is 18-9 and our record without him in that time frame (including the entire 09 season) is 5-8. A lot of opposing fans like to argue that Russell Wilson was a 1 man team for our offense in the past few years - and maybe they are right, but Nate was even more of a 1 man defense in my opinion.

LonghornsLegend
02-15-2011, 11:17 PM
One thing that hasn't been mentioned and maybe I'm wrong but he strikes me as a very passionate leader. The type of guy who speaks up for the team or the defense, can change the plays, be the QB of the defense, fire up the team, etc. I really love those intangibles when your talking about a MIKE and he seems like one of those guys.


People can concern themselves with his timed speed, but when I watch him I see a guy who is a very intelligent football player. He has a nose for the ball, anticipates where he needs to be, and packs a punch when he delivers a hit.


He looks like his lateral agility is very fluid and he changes directions quickly. I'm not concerned with his 40 time one bit. I've been on the bandwagon for a few months after D brought him to my attention, and I don't know that I'd cancel out him playing in the 3-4. Bradie James sucks shedding blocks too, I guess it depends on which ILB he'd be and what you'd be asking him to do.

bigbluedefense
02-16-2011, 06:48 AM
I'm really starting to hope the Giants get him. Everything you guys are saying about him...he's my kind of linebacker. I hope the Giants feel the same way.

ncst8fan83
02-16-2011, 08:17 AM
I can watch these all day...

http://www.gifsoup.com/view3/1366037/nate-irving-o.gif

http://www.gifsoup.com/view3/1949064/nate-irving-hit-ecu-o.gif

3Man20
02-16-2011, 10:06 AM
When was his car accident? Did he play at all this year?

His accident was before last season, he played the whole season this year and played EXTREMELY well...I am biased, but I would still put him in the top tier linebackers..he can play outside, as he did his whole career until this past season, or stay inside..he is a little undersized, but he definitely makes up for it with instincts and tenacity.