Evans is awesome. He is easily the best off the ball Linebacker in this
Draft. Vander Esch has better size and hasn't gotten hurt. Evans has some
injury history, and his size is a concern. But on the field, he is head
and shoulders above Vander Esch. He is great at the point taking on
the much bigger OLs, shedding them with his hands and power, and making
the tackle. He is a little freakish in the run game shoving off OLs, and
redirecting to the ball carrier.
guys just know how to play with elite leverage, and play much stronger
than their size would indicate. Evans is one of those guys. Great burst upfield. He played some slot corner late in games as well. And he did not allow a lot of separation to the slot WRs he covered. He
is great moving laterally. Great football mind. He can read it before
the snap, and attack the gap where the RB is going before anyone else on
field can move.
He has great eyes. He sees everything. He plays behind his eyes better than any LB in this Draft.
He is a great blitzer from the edge and up the middle. They will line him up as
a 3-4 OLB, and he will attack upfield to the QB. Plays with great
speed to power to shove off OLs. He has that knack for hitting the
taking on blockers. He plays with great leverage and heavy hands inside. He has
that knack for punching, shoving, and speed to powering OLs back and off
balance enough to scoot past them to the RB. He can uses his hands and
leverage in the rush as well. He hits OLs all the way across the line in
the rush, gets them off balance, and gets to the QB. It is amazing how he
can stun and get OTs off balance at his size, so he can slip past and get
to the ball.
He reads it and gets to ball carrier inside tackles as fast anyone in this Draft. Great burst upfield.
He is a great sure tackler. Great form tackler. He plays with a lot more strength
than you would think. I love how he flows through traffic and gets to the
ball carrier. He has an incredible knack for moving through trash and traffic and
not getting touched by a blocker.
He does a great job spying the running QB. I love how he moves on the field. He is the best mover on the field at LB. He can blitz
one side of the line, and go and tackle the WR on the other side of the line, when the QB throws to him. He
plays with great leverage against OLs. He seems to lack ball skill sometimes.
He will have perfect coverage, and not be able to make the play on the
ball in the air, and let the receiver catch it.
was the leader of the Alabama defense, and made checks and calls.
"Both guys have made a significant contribution and played a lot of football around here. We think both of them are really, really good players. I think both of them have responded well as starters this spring and are starting to show some leadership. I’ve been really pleased with those guys," Saban said
about Evans and Hand. "So, hopefully they’ll continue to improve and grow and they’ll become the kind of people who can impact other folks on our defense, so that not only do they play great football, but they help others do the same."
Smooth moving backwards in his drop.
(Senior): Versatile athlete who played in the middle with the ability to come off the edge for the Tide ... selected as one of the Tide’s permanent team captains as a senior ... honored as a First Team All-American by the AFCA ... earned First Team All-SEC from the Associated Press and was named to the All-SEC second team by the conference coaches ... collected a team-high tying 74 tackles, and led the Tide with 13 tackles for loss (-54 yards) despite missing a pair of games due to injury ... contributed seven quarterback hurries to tie for second at UA ... totaled six sacks (-41 yards) to rank second on the team in that category ... added three pass breakups, a forced fumble and one fumble recovery ... chosen as one of 15 semifinalists for the Butkus Award ... tabbed to the Nagurski Trophy Preseason Watch Lists ... selected as a Second Team Preseason All-American by Phil Steele ... earned defensive player of the week recognition from the Alabama coaches for his play against Arkansas, LSU and Clemson. Florida State: Made the start against the Seminoles, but saw limited playing time after suffering a groin injury before halftime ... finished with five tackles, including half a stop for a loss, and one pass breakup ... injured himself on a blocked field goal that he returned 29 yards to close out the first
Day: He got on the field in drills. And he looked excellent moving back in coverage. Nice hips moving
backwards. He looked great in club rip. He
is the best off the ball LB blitzing, and is also one of the top guys
dropping. He can look like he can do anything a DC needs. He is great at
taking on a blockers shedding them, and getting to the RB. Great agility
and COD is incredible.
He is a terrific rusher. He is my top LB in the Draft. I wish he could stay
healthy. He has to get stronger and more flexible to stay on the field. Terrific job getting in front of the RB and knocking him down. Terrific run stuffing Mike, with great athleticism.
They will slant the line and blitz him off the edge. He is very effective blitzing up the gut. Doesn't
have good instincts playing the ball in the air.
Nice speed to the outside on the toss to take down the RB. He plays out
on the edges a lot chasing and covering RBs. He has that knack for
sticking with the RB in coverage. Nice speed blitzer off the edge. Great instincts and reactions against tricky defenses. He
is great getting through trash to hit the ball carrier. Great COD in the Box.
He will line up on the edge like he is blitzing, and then snap outside and cover the slot guy. He can run with the slot WR, and stop as quick
as the WR does, and turn back to defend the pass.
Nice knack for hitting the QB as he throws on the blitz. Nice spin move inside. Nice job getting around blocks on runs toward him when he is at ILB. Great sure tackler. He always seems to get in on the tackle when the RB runs the ball.
He can cover the slot WR, and slapped the ball down covering Clemson's Renfro in the Slot. That is a big weapon in versatility when you have an LB who can cover the third WR.
However, he did miss or not see the next two passes to Renfro when he was
almost hugging him in coverage. I mean, he was right on him in perfect
coverage and didn't make a play on the ball. But at least he crush the
little slot guy after the catch.
He was playing outside in the Champ Game and looked great.
They move him around a lot. Great speed and instincts. He rushed the QB
from the strong side as the QB dumped the ball off on the weakside. He ran past the
QB to the opposite side of the field, and tackled the RB from behind. Great spin move inside to hurry the QB into dumping the ball off.
He was incredible in the Champ game.
He was rushing the QB like an All American. He does a great job spying the running QB. I love how he moves on the field. He is the best mover on the field at LB. He can blitz
one side of the line, and go and tackle the WR on the other side of the line when the QB throws to him.
Terrific job getting outside on the swing pass to take out the RB. Terrific speed blitzer. He has
a nice inside spin move on the ORT that takes
him right to the QB. Nice power shove that knocks the ORT back, and gives
him a two way path to the QB. He does a great job picking up the TE going across the box.
Nice speed to the outside,
when he is at the Mike, on the toss to take down the RB outside. He
is great getting through trash and traffic to hit the ball carrier. Great COD in the Box.
I told everyone that he was the best rushers of the off the line Linebackers three weeks ago, when you never heard anyone talking about his passrush abilities. Mel and Todd were certainly listening, as
they talked about what a terrific pass rusher he suddenly
was on First Draft.
He really took to his new role as edge rusher. "All it does is build character. You become unselfish. You become more about the team and when you have that type of mindset, your individual success is going to come anyway when you’re thinking about the team," Evans said. "Those things I have learned here overall under Coach Saban, I feel like those are the most important things you can take here and to the next level." He has been an off the line LB mostly before this season.
In case you hadn't noticed, the NFL has changed. LBs have to be more valuable in the passing game than the running game. But you still have to be able to stop the run. This change has worked its way down to college football. Evans has found a role in the passing game that every team
needs, and is one of the top run stuffers as well.
He is a great blitzer off the edge, and he can drop as well. He really showed it in the Playoffs. That elevates him to the number two LB in this Draft behind Roquan Smith. He could be an interesting pick for the Pats at 32. There
are very few LBs can move laterally in coverage and after the RB like this
But maybe the most interesting aspect was that he played hurt the whole Playoffs. "I would say really don’t make the stage bigger than what it is," Evans said about playing in the Playoffs. "Play with my eyes, being able to trust my instincts and things like that. The fact that I had success playing on the stage that I did, I feel like just playing in a regular game would be a lot easier now." He actually
played the game against Clemson with what looked like an ankle sprain, and still started against Georgia.
moved in front of the RB, and watch how he stacked and shed the OLT, and
got in position to tackle the RB (:01). At
the Mike. Watch him move laterally all the way down the line to stay in
front of the RB (:06). Elite
coverage on the little Slot WR (:14)! Great
knee bend, power, and leverage (:20). Sheds
the OG at the point like snake skin, and takes the RB down.
goes from Mike to Edge. He pushes the ORT's arm off, and shoves the ORT past
the QB. He stops and finds a lane to the QB (:25). Great
coverage LB. He might be the best in this Draft. Watch how he eyes down the QB,
and then goes and gets the RB on the screen (:48). Watch
how quick he moves from zone coverage to attack the edge when the QB takes
off (:56). He
plays behind his eyes as well as any LB I've seen.
lines up all over. Here he is as the Will lined up in front of the Bunch.
Great instincts in coverage. He closes down the slot guy, and barely moves (1:00). Back
out on the slot guy. He turned inside to react to the QB, before the Slot
guy made his block (1:14). Edge
rusher. Stunts inside. Sheds the OG to get in front of the QB (1:24). He
makes the QB have to cut back behind his OG, instead of hitting it
straight up field.
turned and waited for the TE, who he knew was coming his way. Then impacted
him off his pattern (1:46). He
is looking for the run. He took the outside lane (RB) on the option, and
the QB kept it. Watch how fast he got through that trash and traffic to get
the QB's legs. That is elite run defense against the option
(2:06). The QB tried to take off to the right, and was forced to go
back to his left (2:25). Look who ran all the way to the other side
to force him out of bounds.
blitzed up the gut, and forced the OC to choose between him and Fitzpatrick
(2:43). ILB Spying the QB (2:51). Love how he faked left, and
then went right to make the OG mostly miss. Then got the RB (2:59). Faked
coverage, than attack the edge. Watch the quick Rip that undressed the ORT (3:06). Then
he somehow got over to the other seam, and took down the WR on the bubble
screen. That is a great play.
Nice burst upfield so fast that even I could see the inside open up before
he spun free. He is the best rusher of all the off the ball Linebackers
(3:14). Edgerusher. He got into the backfield so fast that he almost
got in on the TFL on the option run (3:29). Watch the elite lateral
burst inside on the stunt that shocked the OL off his shirt (3:45). Than
he saw the QB take off, and was eyeing him down before the OL could get
his hands back up. Which is why he hit him in the hole behind the
set up the defense, and makes the check. He blitzed so quick the OLs missed
him, and the RB scrapped him just enough to make him miss the QB (4:01). Watch
the ridiculous burst upfield once he saw the QB kept it (4:10). He
grabbed the TE going down the Seam. Then ran with him (4:17). But when the QB took off, who made the tackle?
is incredible at fighting off the bigger blocker, and then getting to the
RB with elite consistency. The Pats could use this guy (4:27). He is
blitzing before the ball is snapped. Watch the stop and go bursts as he
to dance around the OLT (4:32). He
took on the lead blocker in the hole, so his teammates could make the
tackle (4:44). He picked up the slot guy a little late (5:21). That
was the worst reaction he had all game, and he still took him down as the ball
is just as good in coverage as he is against the run (5:33). He read
it before the snap. He was the first to move. He attacked the hole so fast
that he split the two OLs, and slammed the RB down short of the 1st
(5:47). He is the best at reading the play and getting through
traffic of all the LBs in this Daft (6:05). He waited way to long
to turn and run with the slot guy, because he was eyeing the running QB (6:32). But
no LB can turn and run quicker and faster than Evans down the seam with
got stuck in traffic, but found the off ramp, and went and tackled the WR
off the catch. He just owns the middle of the field (6:40). Edgerusher.
Best mover in the Draft. He got caught by the ORT as he read the Option.
Then he moved laterally downfield and made the tackle. That is amazing (6:47). He
went from one side of the field to the other, to stay in front of the WR (7:09).
And he didn't let Cain turn upfield.
Corner. That is excellent coverage. The QB just slipped it in, and Evans
punished the little Slot guy (7:17). He is the first moving forward
in run defense again. He can read the play before the snap, and guess the
snap count as well as any LB I've seen (7:22). Watch the surprising angle he takes
in the traffic. Great instincts (7:37). Love this play. Watch
the patience as he wait for the OL to commit. Then he dodged him with one
step, and grabbed the RB with one hand (7:45). Inside blitzer into
the spy (7:52). Into the backfield, back through traffic,
and he found the ball again (7:58). Best mover inside in the
2017 (Senior): Versatile athlete who played in the middle with the ability to come off the edge for the Tide ... selected as one of the Tide’s permanent team captains as a senior ... honored as a First Team All-American by the AFCA ... earned First Team All-SEC from the Associated Press and was named to the All-SEC second team by the conference coaches ... collected a team-high tying 74 tackles, and led the Tide with 13 tackles for loss (-54 yards) despite missing a pair of games due to injury ... contributed seven quarterback hurries to tie for second at UA ... totaled six sacks (-41 yards) to rank second on the team in that category ... added three pass breakups, a forced fumble and one fumble recovery ... chosen as one of 15 semifinalists for the Butkus Award ... tabbed to the Nagurski Trophy Preseason Watch Lists ... selected as a Second Team Preseason All-American by Phil Steele ... earned defensive player of the week recognition from the Alabama coaches for his play against Arkansas, LSU and Clemson. Florida State: Made the start against the Seminoles, but saw limited playing time after suffering a groin injury before halftime ... finished with five tackles, including half a stop for a loss, and one pass breakup ... injured himself on a blocked field goal that he returned 29 yards to close out the first half. Vanderbilt: Returned from a groin injury to make the start against the Commodores ... totaled one tackle in limited playing time, entering for the Tide’s base package ... helped UA limit VU to only 78 yards of offense. Ole Miss: Recorded three tackles against the Rebels while adding one quarterback hurry ... played a key role in limiting the high-powered Rebel offense to 253 total yards, well below their season average entering the game. Texas A&M: Collected a season-high tying five tackles ... recovered a fumble for the Tide at midfield to stall the A&M drive ... helped limit the Aggies to only 308 yards of total offense, 140 yards below their season average. Arkansas: Put together a career night against the Razorbacks ... totaled six tackles, including a career-high 3.5 for a loss (-22 yards), while contributing two sacks (-20 yards) to tie his previous career mark ... matched his career-high total with a pair of quarterback hurries and forced his first fumble of the season ... earned defensive player of the week recognition from the Tide coaches for his efforts against the Hogs. Tennessee: Matched his season-high mark for tackles with six stops against the Volunteers ... added two tackles for loss (-8 yards), including a sack (-7 yards) and pressured the quarterback twice ... his play on defense was key in helping the Tide hold the Vols to no offensive touchdowns and only 108 yards of total offense. LSU: Set a new season-high for tackles with 10 stops to pace the Tide against the Tigers ... added one sack (-1 yard), his fourth over the last three games... captained the UA defense following the loss of Shaun Dion Hamilton ... earned defensive player of the week recognition from the Alabama coaches for his performance. Mississippi State: Had another monster game, tying for second on the team in tackles with nine ... added a team-high 2.5 tackles for loss (-14 yards) and contributed to the Tide’s lone sack of the night (-10 yards) ... also collected one quarterback pressure against the Bulldogs. Mercer: Made three tackles against the Bears with a pass breakup ... helped the Tide defense limit MU to only 161 yards of total offense on the day. Auburn: Ranked second of the Tide defense with nine tackles, including one for loss (-4 yards) ... added a quarterback pressure to his game totals in the Iron Bowl. Clemson: Paced the Crimson Tide with a team-high nine tackles ... contributed one sack (-3 yards) and a pass breakup against the Tigers ... helped in limiting the high-powered Clemson offense to only 188 yards and no touchdowns ... tabbed one of the Tide coaching staff’s defensive players of the week for his play in the CFP Semifinal matchup. Georgia: Finished second for the Tide defense with eight tackles in the CFP National Championship Game ... added 1.5 tackles for loss (-2 yards), part of the Tide’s 12 in the contest.
2016 (Junior): Made the move to the inside during the fall after spending the previous two seasons on the outside ... totaled 53 tackles with four sacks (-16 yards), 4.5 tackles for loss (-17 yards), a forced fumble and a fumble recovery ... added six quarterback hurries and two pass breakups to his season totals ... named one of the UA coaches’ special teams players of the week for his performance at Arkansas. USC: Was limited in practice during game week, forcing him into a limited role ... still managed to finish with a then career-high four unassisted tackles by night’s end. Western Kentucky: Entered after the first quarter and finished with three total tackles against the Hilltoppers ... helped limit the WKU ground attack to only 23 yards. Ole Miss: Finished with a pair of tackles against the Rebels ... played significant minutes at middle linebacker following the loss of Reuben Foster for the majority of the second half. Kentucky: Set a career high for tackles with five stops against the Wildcats, registering one sack (-3 yards) in the process ... pressured the quarterback once and forced the first fumble of his career ... the fumble was recovered by Ronnie Harrison and returned 55 yards for Alabama’s second touchdown of the evening. Arkansas: Totaled a career-high seven tackles with half a sack (-2 yards) against the Razorbacks ... added a pair of quarterback pressures to help the Tide defense collect a season-high 12 quarterback hurries by game’s end. Tennessee: Finished with two tackles against the Volunteers ... helped limit the high-powered UT offense to only 163 total yards. Texas A&M: Made one stop from his inside linebacker spot ... played a key role in helping to limit the Aggie offense to 278 total yards. LSU: Collected one tackle, sacking the Tiger quarterback for a loss of one yard to force a punt on the second offensive drive of the day ... saw significant playing time and helped limit the Tigers to only 125 yards of total offense. Mississippi State: Tied for the team lead with six tackles against the Bulldogs ... added his first career pass breakup while totaling a career-high tying two quarterback hurries ... his pressure helped limit the MSU quarterback to a 61.15 quarterback rating. Chattanooga: Pressured the quarterback once while adding one tackle against the Mocs ... also recovered his first fumble of the season, falling on top of the ball after it came out of the Chattanooga quarterback’s hands. Auburn: Did not record any stats in the Iron Bowl ... helped on a defensive unit that limited the Tigers to 182 yards of total offense, including 66 yards rushing. Florida: Came off the bench to play a key role on the Alabama defense following the loss of Hamilton ... totaled three tackles on the day, including half a tackle for loss (-1 yard) ... leapt into the air to meet the Gator running back head on for his first tackle of the game, helping the Tide maintain its goal line stand and force a UF turnover on downs. Washington: Made his first career start, filling in for Hamilton ... matched his career high for tackles with seven stops against the Huskies ... registered one sack (-7 yards) while helping to limit the UW offense to only 194 total yards. Clemson: Set a career-high mark for tackles with 11 stops to rank second on the team ... made six solo tackles with five assisted ... added half a sack (-3 yards).
2015 (Sophomore): Made 10 tackles in his second season after notching 15 stops in 13 games as a true freshman. Wisconsin: Entered as a linebacker late in the game while also serving on special teams ... did not record any statistics. Middle Tennessee: Saw action on defense and special teams, but did not post any stats by game’s end. ULM: Recorded his first tackle of the season, a sack that pushed the Warhawks back nine yards ... his sack was one of the Tide’s season-high six in the game. Georgia: Came off the bench on defense while also seeing time on special teams, but did not record any stats. Arkansas: Collected his second sack of the season (-5 yards) to go with his two total tackles ...helped hold the Razorbacks to more than 250 yards below their season average entering the night. Texas A&M: Provided depth at linebacker but did not record any tackles. Tennessee: Recorded two quarterback hurries coming off the bench in passing downs ... played a key role in an Alabama pass rush that recorded five total sacks and eight quarterback hurries by day’s end. LSU: Saw time against the Tigers but did not record any stats. Mississippi State: Notched one tackle against the Bulldogs. Charleston Southern: Played against the Bucs but did not record any stats. Auburn: Finished with two tackles in the win over the Tigers ... helped limit the AU offense to only 260 yards on offense. Florida: Notched one tackle in a reserve role against the Gators. Michigan State: Saw action against the Spartans but did not record any stats. Clemson: Produced the best game of his career, finishing with both of the Crimson Tide’s sacks on the night for a loss of -14 yards ... totaled three tackles in the victory over the Tigers to set career-high marks for tackles, tackles for loss and sacks.
2014 (Freshman): An outstanding athlete who excelled on special teams while working his way onto the field at outside linebacker in pass rushing situations ... played in 13 games ... recorded 15 tackles on the season with two tackles for loss (-11 yards), one sack (-10 yards) and three quarterback hurries ... tied for the team lead in special teams tackles with 12 ... recorded a solo stop in his first career action on kickoff coverage ... earned special teams player of the week honors from the Alabama coaching staff following the Southern Miss and Mississippi State games. West Virginia: Notched one solo tackle on kickoff coverage. FAU: Registered two unassisted tackles ... had first career sack for a 10-yard loss ... recorded one quarterback hurry. Southern Miss: Named the Special Teams Player of the Week for his efforts against Southern Miss ... finished with two solo stops. Florida: Recorded one tackle off the bench at outside linebacker against the Gators. Texas A&M: Registered one tackle and helped limit the SEC’s top-ranked offense to just 172 yards. Tennessee: Made one solo tackle on special teams in Knoxville. Mississippi State: Led the team with three special teams tackles to earn special teams player of the week honors from the coaching staff. Western Carolina: Made two tackles with one on kickoff coverage and one behind the line of scrimmage on defense. Auburn: Came off the bench late to provide a pass-rushing spark, tallying one quarterback hurry. Missouri: Made two special teams tackles and recorded a quarterback hurry ... both solo stops in the Tide’s SEC Championship Game victory over the Tigers.
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