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2010 Scouting Report Presented by Comcast: Dekoda Watson, LB, Florida State

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This post is presented by Comcast

Continuing on the theme of linebacker day, we'll talk about another player that the Jaguars have shown plenty of interest in, Dekoda Watson. As the Jaguars hunt for a potential candidate to fill the middle linebacker spot, Rolando McClain has been a name tossed around among Jaguar fans, but as Alfie pointed out today, he may not be fast enough to warrant a top 10 pick. While Dekoda Watson is certainly nowhere near a candidate for the 10th overall selection, speed is not going to be the reason why. Watson ran a blazing 4.40 at his pro day, making him the fastest linebacker in this year's draft. The question that many scouts have is whether his size matches that of a linebacker or a safety.

Watson showed up to the combine at 240 pounds and ran a 4.55, dropped the weight and measured in at his pro day at 226 pounds, running a 4.40 40 time. That's not to say that he showed up to the combine out of shape; he came with extra weight on to show that he had the size to be an NFL linebacker. But what is clear is that at his trim 226 pounds, he is in his most natural, athletic state and plays accordingly. So is 6'1, 226 pounds too small? How about we look at the sizes of the Jaguars current linebackers:

Daryl Smith 6'2, 245

Justin Durant 6'1, 230

Russell Allen 6'3, 234

Clint Ingram 6'2, 240

Brian Iwuh 6'0, 234

Now I'm no conditioning expert, but I believe that an NFL workout program over the next year could give Watson an extra 10 pounds without losing the speed. I personally feel size should not be a factor in passing on someone who is clearly a phenomenal athlete.

The other question about Watson has been his injury history which includes a recent Tommy John surgery to repair his elbow and problem s with his hamstring. Combine that with questionable ability to diagnose plays as they happen and questionable decision making, as he was one of the players suspended in the academic scandals at FSU, and a elite athlete may fall right into the hands of the Jaguars at a low cost. 

Now I don't usually do this, but I strongly suggest you watch the first video below and try to tell me you don't want a guy like that on the Jaguars.

Video Killed the Scouting Report

Dekoda Watson: By the Numbers

 

Dekoda Watson
Position 1:  Linebacker
Height:  6'1
Position 2:  N/A
Weight: 226
Class:  Senior Age:  22
Projected Round: 3rd-4th

 40time:  4.40

 

2nd Team All-ACC 2009

Stats Overview Tackles Misc Interceptions
YEAR TOT SOLO AST SACK STF STFY FF BK INT YDS AVG LNG TD PD
2006 23 15 8 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.0 0 0 0
2007 50 32 18 3 0 0 0 0 1 40 40.0 40 1 0
2008 46 31 15 0 0 0 0 0 1 4 4.0 4 0 0
2009 63 35 28 7 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.0 0 0 0

According to the Experts

CBS Sports

Draft Countdown

Pros

Terrific athleticism --- Very good speed --- Quick with a burst --- Great change of direction skills --- Long arms --- Reliable tackler --- Sideline-to-sideline range --- Does a nice job in pursuit --- Able to match up in coverage --- Tough --- Smart --- Competitive --- Hard worker --- Leader. 

Cons

Severely undersized --- Doesn't play strong --- Average instincts and awareness --- Has trouble getting off blocks --- Will get pushed around at times --- Will not be a fit  for every system --- Durability is a concern. 

CDS Draft

Pros

A player who truly passes the eyeball test. Outstanding physique that shows the effort in the weight room. Despite the muscle mass, Watson remains a flexible, fluid athlete. Explosive player who shows good quickness once he diagnoses a play. Is able to pick through the trash during pursuit and keep his legs clean. Is tremendous off the edge, can flatten out and get to the QB in a hurry. Has the speed to drop into coverage and run with slot WRs, TEs, and backs. Intense player on the field with excellent leadership skills.

Cons

Despite his physique, he's still undersized and has shown real durability issues during his career. While he reacts quickly, he doesn't always read correctly, sending him speeding the wrong way on misdirection and play action. Had an off-field issue that led to a suspension, so there is some questionable decision-making in his history that he'll have to answer to.