A.C. Leonard NFL Draft 2014: Highlights, Scouting Report and More

Ryan McCrystal@@ryan_mccrystalFeatured ColumnistApril 9, 2014

Tennessee State tight end A C Leonard runs a drill at the NFL football scouting combine in Indianapolis, Saturday, Feb. 22, 2014. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)
Michael Conroy

A.C. Leonard, TE, Tennessee State (HT: 6'2" WT: 252 lbs)

Combine Weigh In
HeightWeightArmsHands
602325233"9 1/4"
NFL.com
Combine Workout
40-Yard DashBench PressVerticalBroad Jump3-Cone DrillShuttle
4.502034"128"DNPDNP
NFL.com

 

Positives

  • A good all-around athlete with the tools to be an effective pass-catching weapon. 
  • Has all the physical tools necessary to be successful as a move tight end in the NFL.
  • Reliable hands—extends his arms to catch away from his body and is able to quickly and smoothly secure the ball.
  • A dangerous weapon after the catch for the tight end position. 
  • Shows impressive balance and body control when adjusting to the ball.
  • Gives a strong effort battling for contested catches and has the leaping ability to help make up for his modest height. 
  • Has the pure speed to pick up chunks of yardage and is capable of making some defensive backs miss in the open field. 
  • Strong enough to break tackles and is willing to lower his shoulder into the defender. 

 

Negatives

  • Limited experience against top competition and won a lot of battles at the lower level simply due to a significant athleticism advantage. 
  • Lacks ideal height for a possession tight end and may be limited to receiving the majority of his targets on short and intermediate routes. 
  • Routes are sloppy and inconsistent. 
  • Has the ability to explode out of his breaks but he's often lazy and rounds off his cuts, giving defensive backs plenty of time to react to his movement. 
  • Focus on the field is extremely poor at times.
  • He often fails to run straight lines in his routes and gets distracted by movement around him, throwing off the timing of his routes. 
  • Fails to locate open space when working against the zone. 
  • Does a poor job adjusting when the play breaks down and often fails to work back toward the quarterback to provide a target.
  • Often holds the ball away from his body and had issues with fumbles—another sign of poor focus and attention to detail on the field.
  • Missed time due to injuries in each of the past three seasons. 
  • Suffered a groin injury in 2013, an undisclosed injury in 2012 and a right knee injury in 2011.
  • Arrested and pleaded no contest to a battery charge in 2012 for dragging his girlfriend out of their apartment by her hair, which led to a suspension while at Florida.

 

 

 

Collegiate Statistics
YearSchoolRecYardsYds/RecTD
2011Florida89912.40
2012Tennessee State5173314.46
2013Tennessee State3444113.05
tsutigers.com

 

Personal Notes

  • Originally attended Florida and played in nine games in 2011.
  • Was not kicked out of Florida, but left the program after he and coach Will Muschamp decided it would be beneficial for him to start over with a new school following his arrest in 2012. 
  • Has two children, a son and a daughter.
  • Second-team FCS All-American in 2012 and 2013. 

Chart created at nces.ed.gov

 

Overall

Leonard is an impressive athlete, but his lack of elite size somewhat limits his upside. He's capable of filling a specific role in an offense but he definitely isn't a three-down player. If a team is comfortable with his off-field issues, he's well worth a Day 3 selection and could be effective immediately if he lands in the right system.

 

Draft Projection: 6th round

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