Now that the 2013 NFL combine is over I'm going to continue with 2013 NFL Draft prospect profiles. There are a few guys I've been interested in for the New York Giants, but I was waiting until after the combine to see how they did. By now it's very likely that I've profiled all but a few of the likely Giants picks at No. 19 overall, and by the end of the next week we'll be getting into later targets.
Today we look at LSU linebacker Kevin Minter, who received a third-round grade from the draft advisory board.
Minter was a physical, instinctive, and very productive player for the LSU Tigers especially after he took over the starting spot from current Bills linebacker Kelvin Sheppard. Minter has good size for a linebacker at 6-foot, 246 pounds (though that is a little short). He is at his best when he is working through blocks to make plays in the run game and playing downhill. Minter was used as a three-down linebacker at LSU and has good instincts in pass defense. Could be a pretty good blitzer in the NFL.
Minter is not overly long and is not a great athlete (4.81 40-yard dash, 33-inch vertical) and does not play great sideline to sideline. Over the last two years he had two top 15 picks playing in front of him (Michael Brockers last year and Barkevious Mingo, who is likely to go that high this year) and two other guys who could be drafted in the second round (Sam Montgomery and Bennie Logan this year) so it could be fair to question how much their presence helped him.
Player comparison: Takeo Spikes (NFL.com), James Laurinaitis (Me)
Does He Fit With The Giants?
I've said this once and I'll say it in every Giants linebacker prospect preview: they are terrible at linebacker and anyone they draft there is likely to be an upgrade. Now as far as the system goes, there are legitimate questions about Minter's sideline to sideline ability. I think he's worth a first-round pick and is a very nice NFL prospect who should be at the very least a productive two-down linebacker, but I think is a guy who will stay on the field all the time.
As far as it relates specifically to the Giants, he isn't especially tall, long, or fast so if he is the Giants selection in the first round it would go against the profile of their typical defensive player, though inside linebacker for them as been an outlier in terms of athleticism (Antonio Pierce, Jonathan Goff, Mark Herzlich, Chase Blackburn have all started games in the middle for them since 2008).
Big Board Rankings
Mocking the Draft-28th
Big Blue View Board-20th
Minter is a terrific football player, but not a terrific athlete. He received a third-round grade from the draft advisory board, but indications are that he'll likely be selected somewhere in the first two rounds, even though he is not a dynamic athlete. Minter might ideally be suited though to play in a 3-4 scheme, so he might not be an option the Giants are really considering in round one. He certainly does not fit their athletic profile, but he is a good football player and you can never have too many of those.
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