2020 Raiders Draft Prospect Profile
Name: Jordan Mack
Position: Middle Linebacker
School: The University of Virginia
Weight: 230 Pounds
Uniquely, Mack loves to dole out punishment as a hitter. From burying the shoulder into the chest or attacking from the perimeter, the ballcarrier meets the ground with force. Mack gets into prime coil/strike position when squared up. If you imagine a compressed spring, with energy behind it. Now, picture the spring expanding. This is how Mack will hit a target.
Primarily tasked with flats and dump passes, Mack will drift towards the target. Using aggressive angle, Mack will attempt to constrict the pattern at the point of the catch. In contrast, he will take a medium drop on zone drops. Not excessively twitched, Mack will flip his hip when necessary.
When barreling toward the line of scrimmage, Mack gets downhill in an instant. By the same token, while in pursuit, his burst looks more than adequate. Mack, after 46 games at UVA, learned to taper his breakdown. Instead of flying past the play, he will run with his eyes and play under control.
As mentioned, reps and experience helped Mack overcome the tendency to appear a bit wild within the the context of a play. Now, he plays with confidence, balance and the ability to process much faster. Four years in Charlottesville did him a world of good.
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At this point in the season, the Raiders linebackers have surrendered eight receiving touchdowns. Tahir Whitehead is responsible for six of them. As a result, the unit sees offenses target them. More importantly, the scheme, under Paul Guenther makes zero adjustments in the second half. The linebackers remain a step slow and often seen chasing back and tight ends downfield. In most defenses, the ‘backers are the heart and soul of that side of the ball. Yet, the Raiders from pre-snap to whistle, look out of position, slow and lethargic. Even with marginal coverage, this unit improves significantly.
The excuse police want to bemoan the loss of Vontaze Burfict as a turning point. If you’ve watched Burfict’s career, you just knew he would embroil himself and team in a needlessly foolish incident that would cause him to lose games via suspension. Yet, Mayock and Gruden, under the advice of Guenther signed him. After four games, his actions caught up to him. The Raiders need a player that will at least play a full season and not incur the wrath or watchful eye of the NFL.
First, Mack will stay on the field and doesn’t look to incur yellow flags. Additionally, Mack’s aggressive style versus the run and zone capabilities will help the Raiders for three downs. Plus, his penchant for creating turnovers will serve him well at the next level. The Raiders don’t need to build around Mack. However, they could draft him as a depth, eventual starter piece that won’t cost them more than a Day Three selection.