PDA

View Full Version : Why is Dont'a Hightower So Underrated?


thegreatone
11-16-2011, 09:56 PM
This guy was having an amazing season next to Rolando McClain, but than tore his ACL. He looked sluggish/slow the year he returned, and many were turned off. But this year he looks back to his previous form if not better.

The guy is the prototypical 3-4 ILB. I don't get the 2 down ILB talk. Sure he isn't great in coverage, but its not like hes Brandon Spikes either. He stuffs runners, and is an excellent blitzer as well.

I don't know why more rankings don't have him #1 or #2 at worst.

Agree/Disagree?

Also, who does compare to in the NFL?

Sloopy
11-16-2011, 10:02 PM
This guy was having an amazing season next to Rolando McClain, but than tore his ACL. He looked sluggish/slow the year he returned, and many were turned off. But this year he looks back to his previous form if not better.

The guy is the prototypical 3-4 ILB. I don't get the 2 down ILB talk. Sure he isn't great in coverage, but its not like hes Brandon Spikes either. He stuffs runners, and is an excellent blitzer as well.

I don't know why more rankings don't have him #1 or #2 at worst.

Agree/Disagree?

Also, who does compare to in the NFL?

I wouldn't knock him as a 3-4 ILB and would certainly be grateful to have him on my team, I just think that this is an extremely talented ILB class

fenikz
11-16-2011, 10:06 PM
Even without the torn ACL he wasn't a elite athlete which is what a 1st round LB should be. And he is most definitely a 2 down LB in the NFL

plus as SVM said this is a very deep class at ILB and LB overall

RaiderNation
11-17-2011, 12:45 AM
I have him valued in the 2nd round. A team like Washington who needs a ILB for the 3-4 would really benefit with him on the team.

Don Vito
11-17-2011, 12:59 AM
He is a great blitzer for an "inside linebacker". Hightower won't run a 4.5 or wow people with his shuttle times but he is a lot more versatile than people give him credit for. He will surprise people in the NFL, another victim of over-analyzation if you ask me.

vidae
11-17-2011, 01:49 AM
He is the perfect second round pick for KC at this point in the process. I'd be more than happy to see him in KC red, but he shouldn't sniff the first half of the first round. Late first/early second is probably his wheelhouse.

FUNBUNCHER
11-17-2011, 05:42 AM
IMO Hightower looked like a future AA for the Tide before the knee injury. Big, explosive, fast and powerful.

Now I have questions about his lateral quickness and straight line speed. I used to think he could play in any scheme. Not anymore.

DraftSavant
11-17-2011, 11:13 AM
Limited athletically and schematically, but if he goes to the right team and system, he'll be a very productive player for a long time. 2nd rounder, a la Spikes, Rey, etc.

Also, I still don't understand how McClain went 8th overall. It's the one Oakland first rounder that people didn't bag on, and he's been serviceable at best. OAK is doing a bit more two-gapping now, so we'll see if that helps him.

K Train
11-17-2011, 11:17 AM
this comparion might be a little off but what about adalius thomas? hes a bit heavier than hightower but i think he could be used in the same way....really i think hightower is a tremendous blitzer from the inside but he could find a home on the outside of a 34 too and line up just about anywhere.

hed look good next to timmons

descendency
11-17-2011, 12:29 PM
I've seen a very large number of Alabama's games and while he makes a lot of plays, he never seems to be the actual guy who makes the play.

He seems to be more of a box score guy than a player.

cmarq83
11-17-2011, 12:40 PM
this comparion might be a little off but what about adalius thomas? hes a bit heavier than hightower but i think he could be used in the same way....really i think hightower is a tremendous blitzer from the inside but he could find a home on the outside of a 34 too and line up just about anywhere.

hed look good next to timmons

I don't think he's anywhere near the type of athlete Thomas was in his Baltimore days. Thomas ran a 4.5 at 270 lbs. and was pretty fluid in coverage.

AntoinCD
11-17-2011, 01:22 PM
I don't think he's anywhere near the type of athlete Thomas was in his Baltimore days. Thomas ran a 4.5 at 270 lbs. and was pretty fluid in coverage.

No he's not but the comparison isn't horrible IMO.

Thomas was a good OLB but not a good pass rusher. He was a very good blitzer coming from anywhere but would struggle if you asked him to line up opposite the OT/TE and pass rush on most plays. I see a similar role for Hightower in the NFL

D-Unit
11-17-2011, 02:01 PM
Hard to tell how good a player is when he is surrounded by such talent. Are his talents, skills, and contributions accurrately being shown? Would he do better or worse being surrounded by lesser talent? This is my problem with the entire Alabama defense this year. Are Kirkpatrick, Upshaw, Barron, Hightower, Chapman, and others being graded accurately or are they benefitting/hurting from their surroundings?

Don Vito
11-17-2011, 02:14 PM
Hard to tell how good a player is when he is surrounded by such talent. Are his talents, skills, and contributions accurrately being shown? Would he do better or worse being surrounded by lesser talent? This is my problem with the entire Alabama defense this year. Are Kirkpatrick, Upshaw, Barron, Hightower, Chapman, and others being graded accurately or are they benefitting/hurting from their surroundings?

It's tough to tell but the best thing to do is look at each players individual talent and then look at recent star studded college defenses. The 2003 Miami defense had guys Sean Taylor, Vilma, DJ Williams, Vince Wilfork, and Antrel Rolle. All of those guys are/were bona fide NFL stars, sure they played on great teams but they also had tons of ability. Then you look at a guys like Maurice Sikes who I believe was the starting safety opposite Taylor. He made a ton of plays, but he is a guy who didn't do anything in the NFL. There is sure to be someone on that Bama defense who, like Sikes, is a very good college player but he looks like more than that due to playing on such an amazing defense.

I think Kirkpatrick, Upshaw, Barron, and Hightower could be impact defenders in the NFL. Chapman could be that kind of player too. Robert Lester is a guy who I like but he scares me a bit, he pretty much plays centerfield and capitalizes on the mistakes that the other studs on that defense makes the QB make. Could he be a great NFL safety? Perhaps, but he is the one guy with a round 1/2 grade on that defense who I am wary about.

AntoinCD
11-17-2011, 02:23 PM
It's tough to tell but the best thing to do is look at each players individual talent and then look at recent star studded college defenses. The 2003 Miami defense had guys Sean Taylor, Vilma, DJ Williams, Vince Wilfork, and Antrel Rolle. All of those guys are/were bona fide NFL stars, sure they played on great teams but they also had tons of ability. Then you look at a guys like Maurice Sikes who I believe was the starting safety opposite Taylor. He made a ton of plays, but he is a guy who didn't do anything in the NFL. There is sure to be someone on that Bama defense who, like Sikes, is a very good college player but he looks like more than that due to playing on such an amazing defense.

I think Kirkpatrick, Upshaw, Barron, and Hightower could be impact defenders in the NFL. Chapman could be that kind of player too. Robert Lester is a guy who I like but he scares me a bit, he pretty much plays centerfield and capitalizes on the mistakes that the other studs on that defense makes the QB make. Could he be a great NFL safety? Perhaps, but he is the one guy with a round 1/2 grade on that defense who I am wary about.

I agree with pretty much everything you said there with the exception that I would swap Lester for Barron. I'm not sure Barron will be a good-to-great safety in the NFL and if anyone I think it's he who benefits most from the talent on Alabama's defense

JBCX
11-17-2011, 02:24 PM
Question: can he play MLB in a 4-3? Like, say, one of those Wide-9 4-3 defenses?

PossibleCabbage
11-18-2011, 01:37 AM
I think just by virtue of being best suited as an ILB in a 3-4 defense, he's not likely to be very highly rated. There are few positions in defensive football more fungible than 3-4 ILB, excepting the extremely elite elite ones.

If you don't think Hightower would be an elite 3-4 ILB (I personally don't), then you probably don't think very highly of him.

Ozzy
11-18-2011, 12:58 PM
The guy is legit 6-4 260+

He has been an impactful player ever since he was a freshman on the top defensive unit in the nation year in and year out it seems...


Yes last year his conditioning and coverage was a huge issue, but this year he is in better shape and is better in coverage. Kid could play 3/4 OLB or ILB I feel. Someone with his strength and power will be a 1st round pick. And those that think it is the old 2010 Hightower, are mistaken.

Sure some linebackers might go ahead of him, but if I was a 3/4 defensive team I would love him on my roster any day of the week.

http://www.saturdaydownsouth.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/Donta-Hightower.jpg

A Perfect Score
11-18-2011, 01:11 PM
He reminds me way too much of Jeremiah Trotter for me to be comfortable with him anywhere near the TE's of the contemporary NFL. I think he's going to get eaten alive when it comes to coverage, but he'll be an effective player if he goes to a 3-4 which needs a thumper to play next to a more athletic option. He's got some good tape and comes from a program with a strong pedigree, but I sure as hell don't want him covering Dustin Keller running a seam or Darren Sproles coming out of the backfield.

K Train
11-18-2011, 01:26 PM
He reminds me way too much of Jeremiah Trotter for me to be comfortable with him anywhere near the TE's of the contemporary NFL. I think he's going to get eaten alive when it comes to coverage, but he'll be an effective player if he goes to a 3-4 which needs a thumper to play next to a more athletic option. He's got some good tape and comes from a program with a strong pedigree, but I sure as hell don't want him covering Dustin Keller running a seam or Darren Sproles coming out of the backfield.

Lawrence Timmons+Donta Hightower=sex on turf