Darrian Beavers NFL Draft 2022: Scouting Report for New York Giants' LBApril 30, 2022
HEIGHT: 6'3 3/4"
HAND: 9 3/4"
ARM: 32 3/8"
WINGSPAN: 80 5/8"
40-YARD DASH: DNP
— Lightning-fast mental trigger. Able to identify and adjust to all kinds of running concepts, as well as gain proper depth and spacing when he sees pass.
— Plays with all 252 pounds behind his pads. Shows great strength both when he can get a full head of steam as well as when he needs to play slower and take on blocks without momentum.
— Long arms and a head-on-fire mentality often give him the first punch when engaging with offensive linemen. Consistently shed blocks both at the second level and at the line of scrimmage.
— Can play on the edge. Sets the edge against the run with great anchor. Not a bendy pass-rusher on the edge, but has enough strength and motor to disrupt at times.
— Consistent, forceful tackler between the numbers. Often stops runners in their tracks and does not allow them to fall forward for extra yardage. Physical presence at the point of contact.
— Physicality shows up in coverage when asked to press tight ends at the line of scrimmage or reroute players in the seams. Consistently does a good job slowing people down.
— Sound zone-coverage skills. Understands how to stay on top of routes with good leverage and not allow himself to get beat for explosive plays. Plenty of examples of him staying high over wheel routes out of the backfield despite his speed.
— Energy and motor are infectious. Constantly looking to muck it up at the line of scrimmage or help rally to finish off tackles.
— Heavy, clunky strider in space. Does not have standout sideline-to-sideline speed.
— Tackling in space can get dicey at times. Much better tackler between the numbers and in more confined areas.
— Man coverage, particularly against vertical routes, could cause issues. Does not have the speed to keep up step for step, has to win in coverage with eyes and leverage.
14 G, 98 TOT, 11 TFL 4 SK, 2 FF, 2 FR, 1 PBU
— Began his career with two seasons at UConn. Started six games in his sophomore season with UConn before deciding to transfer to Cincinnati.
— Three-year starter for Cincinnati upon transferring in 2019.
— Beavers was a senior in 2020, but the added year of eligibility because of the COVID-19 pandemic allowed him to play in 2021.
— Beavers played safety and wide receiver coming out of high school, but he moved to linebacker when he got to college.
For teams wanting a long, physical presence at linebacker, look no further than Darrian Beavers.
At 6'4" and 255 pounds, Beavers is one of the biggest off-ball linebackers in this class, and he plays exactly as his frame would suggest. He packs a ton of force behind his pads, both when tacking on blocks and when making tackles. Beavers' strength and feistiness are only exacerbated by his quick trigger against the run game.
While Beavers may not be a man-to-man cover linebacker, his work in zone coverage and as a blitzer should still give him a role in any defense. He can also flex down to the edge in certain packages, similar to what the New England Patriots do with some of their linebackers.
Beavers projects best as a middle linebacker or strong-side linebacker who can be moved down to the line of scrimmage as a changeup/situational answer. His length, physicality and instant mental processing make him a dangerous run defender with just enough coverage chops to help keep a pass defense unit glued together.
Though Beavers might not have the dynamic speed and explosiveness needed to become a true game-changer at the position, it's hard to find other linebackers in this class as pro-ready and complete as him.
GRADE: 7.5 (Potential Impact Player - 2nd Round)
OVERALL RANK: 58
POSITION RANK: LB7
PRO COMPARISON: K.J. Wright