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2011 NFL Draft Prospect Profile: Mason Foster, OLB, Washington

As we wind our way through this series of 2011 NFL Draft prospect profiles, let's remember that the draft is seven rounds long. It is about a whole lot more than the first round, where our New York Giants pick 19th. With that in mind, many of the prospects I choose to look at will be guys who could interest the Giants beyond that 19th selection.

Today, I look at one of those players. That would be Washington Huskies outside linebacker Mason Foster. In its most recent mock draft, Draft Tek has Foster going to the Giants in the second round. He is a 6-foot-2, 242-pound tackling machine, and I love some of the things said about the guy.

Things like "Type of guy all good teams need --- Underrated prospect who'll outperform draft slot." Or " "late-bloomer" could be a diamond-in-the-rough type for a team like the Giants." The latter comment coming from Draft Tek.

Let's move on to the scouting reports.

Mason Foster
OLB, Washington (Sr.)
6-foot-2, 242 pounds

Scouting Reports

From Draft Countdown:

-- Adequate bulk with a sturdy frame
-- Athletic with good speed and quickness
-- Fiery, super competitive and physical
-- Excellent instincts and awareness
-- Reliable tackler who can deliver a big hit
-- Extremely active with a non-stop motor
-- Nice range and does a good job in pursuit
-- Effective as a blitzer and in pass coverage
-- Team leader with a terrific work ethic

-- Lacks ideal height and has short arms
-- Can be too aggressive at times
-- Is not overly strong or powerful
-- Not real stout at the point of attack
-- Struggles to take on and shed blockers

Has experience at all three (SAM, MIKE & WILL) linebacker positions --- The heart and soul of Washington's defense and was to that side of the ball what Jake Locker was to the offense --- Not flashy but a true football player with an impressive blend of physical tools and intangibles --- Type of guy all good teams need --- Underrated prospect who'll outperform draft slot.

From Sideline Scouting:

Positives: Incredible production in 2010 (162 tackles, 6.5 sacks), very consistent production, had 10+ tackles in all but two games in 2010... Decent speed given size and position... Has an ideal frame to play weakside linebacker in several schemes, excellent bulk, plays bigger than listed size... Is a true football player and throwback-style linebacker, plays with a great motor and shows his love for playing the game between every whistle... Shows the ability to be a big-time hitter, drives through tackles and uses momentum very effectively, forced six fumbles in 2009... Is a true team player, has a very humble personality and values winning above all else, coaches rave about his attitude and work ethic... Is a natural athlete and playmaker, played three positions in high school including quarterback... Has a quick closing burst, especially when zeroing in on opposing quarterbacks, trusts instincts and then reacts... Is very powerful against blockers off the edge, which makes him a very able pass rusher along the outside, bull rush is surprisingly effective for his size... Has the potential to be a tackling machine in the NFL because of high motor and passion for playing the position, has all the physical tools to be a nightmare against the run, and has never had durability issues.

Negatives: Plays on a defense that ranks at the bottom of the FBS, so he has been the beneficiary of a lot of opportunities, which could be one of the reasons for huge productivity... Tends to play a little high, which leads to him getting out of position at times, needs to lower center of gravity in order to increase explosiveness when engaging blockers... Has the ability to rush the passer, but does not have a large arsenal of pass-rushing moves, and will not likely be relied upon as a third-down option in the NFL... Not a natural defender in coverage, is too stiff in the hips to be effective in man coverage against NFL tight ends and backs... Is not an incredibly flashy player, does not possess elite quickness or agility.

Other Profiles

-- Mike Pouncey
-- Nate Solder
-- Mikel LeShoure
-- Anthony Castonzo