MidFielder ~ Myles Jack ~ Los Angeles Bruins
For that reason, and in order to offer NomenClature that speaks not to archaic, obsolete "Positions", but rather to Skill Sets that accurately reflect the dynamic Changes of the 21st Century Game and the Roles they have spawned, I have undertaken to craft Terminology that is designed to break Skill Sets down as they really are.
Defensive Coordinators have, since Time Immemorial, employed highly creative terminology in devising Defenses and in designating Assignments. In that Spirit, I have admittedly indulged myself considerably in devising the following NomenClature. It is undeniably colorful, but I like to think that there's an underlying Logic, as well:
MidFielders ~ This is in fact my collective term for all of what you Earthlings refer to as "LineBackers", a term that I consider moderately insulting to the Players in question. The reason I'm employing a collective term ~ at least for now ~ is that I believe that the Skill Sets for any of the 3 or 4 Jobs indicated therein are remarkably similar, though their Duties are certainly considerably divergent. The Prototype for any MidFielder would be about 6000/240 or thereabouts.
I don't consider Dragons that play what you Earthlings refer to as "OutSide LineBacker" in a 34 Defense to be MidFielders.
Dragons have a particular Skill Set and natural strengths which are divergent to those of MidFielders.
MidFielders, whether in a 434, a 335, a 425, a 245, or whatever you come up with, are natural Super Hybrids who can quite conceivably Rush the Passer, Drop into Coverage, and, above all, Defend against the Run.
When evaluating MidFielders, this is how I break things down:
Power: Above all: Core Power. Torso Power is important, but Core Power, from the Knees to the Ribs, is absolutely crucial. All the upper body strength in the world still fails if you can't dig in your heels. But Core Power enables a Defensive Lineman to project Power in the Passing Game and to reject Power in the Running Game.
Agility: Launch Velocity, Acceleration, and above all: Fluidity or Core Agility. Core Agility is even more essential to sustained good Health ~ and to sustained good FootBall ~ than Core Power. The ability to react with Serpentine smoothness is a tremendous asset in all Aspects of the Game, and certainly in the Hand to Hand Combat that characterizes Trench Warfare. All the Power in the World goes only so far if you're stiff and lumbering out there.
Combat Skills: Paw Power, Mechanics ~ Hand Speed & Positioning ~ and of course: Frame.
Intangibles: Processing Speed and Motor. Processing Speed or Diagnostic Velocity is about how quickly and effectively one Reads & Reacts to how the Rapidly Roiling Tactical LandScape effects Blocking Schemes, and Motor is about Endurance and Drive: How much Work has been put into Conditioning, and how it manifests itself.
Run Defense: Power, Agility, Combat Skills, Navigating Traffic, Processing Speed, Motor, and Tackling.
Pass Coverage: Agility, Processing Speed, and Catch Point Capacity.
Pass Rush: Power, Agility, and Combat Skills.
Broken down into SubCategories, it'd go something like this:
* Core Power ~ lower body Power. Core Power trumps Torso Power. Tyrannosaurus Rex had exceptional Core Power.
* Torso Power ~ upper Body Power. Important, but not crucial. T Rex had lousy Torso Power...yet was King.
* Anchoring Strength against the Run.
* Drive Power in the Pass Rush.
* Fluidity, above all things: Core Agility & Flexibility makes everything possible.
* Launch Velocity ~ Speed into Contact off the Snap.
* Acceleration ~ Short Speed or Quickness.
* Verticity ~ The Ability ~ or lack thereof ~ to Flips Hips and Turn & Burn in Pass Coverage.
* Paw Power ~ The Power & Speed of the initial Punch.
* Paw Velocity ~ How active the Hands are.
* Paw Positioning ~ It's all about Angles & Leverage.
* Frame ~ Above all: WingSpan.
* Processing Speed ~ Field Vision. Rapidly Reading & Reacting to the Offense.
* Motor ~ Intensity and Duration.
* Combat Skills
* Navigating Traffic
* Processing Speed
* Processing Speed
* Catch Point Capacity
* Combat Skills
Agility: Magnificent. Extraordinary Acceleration and Closing Speed. Sensational, utterly serpentine Fluidity.
Combat Skills: Impressive. Moderate Mechanical Skills, but outstanding Paw Persistence.
Intangibles: Excellent and with Potential for Greatness. Impressive and improving Field Vision and a phenomenal Motor.
Run Defense: He projects as a potentially awesome Run Defender. If his Combat Skills and Field Vision continue to improve ~ and every indicator of Intelligence and Passion strongly suggests that they will ~ then he could be a SuperStar in Run Defense, because he's got the Power to navigate Traffic and make a consistent Impact Between The Tackles, and he's got such preposterous Speed and Agility that his Range could be Off The Charts.
Pass Coverage: And his Potential in Pass Coverage is simply magnificent. His Field Vision is remarkably well developed in Pass Coverage, which is astonishing, his Verticity ~ his capacity to Turn & Burn, Earthlings ;) ~ is sensational, and even his Catch Point Capacity is incredible. I believe that he'll become one of the very best Coverage MidFielders ever.
Pass Rush: Impressive and with tremendous Potential. Don't get me wrong: He needs Time & Training and Development. But Jack has an extraordinary combination of Agility and Power ~ especially Speed and Fluidity. All he needs to do is get that Training to develop his Combat Skills and develop his Field Vision and Timing, and he should be a Force.
And as ballyhooed as Myles Jack is, he also plays prominently into my Trajectory Equation ~ Talent x Intelligence x Motor = Potential ~ because he doesn't turn 21 until September and because, evident from his Rate of Improvement early in the 2015 Season before his Injury, is more undeveloped, relative to'is Potential, than Top Talents tend to be.
That being my perception of things, it's my Belief that Myles Jack, having already shown remarkable Improvement both in Combat Skills and in Field Vision despite his considerable Youth, and possessed of a phenomenal Motor, is a tremendously good Bet to put in the Time & Training it's gonna take to make the most of his vast Talent.
As for my take on his Health and how it impacts his Intrinsic Draft Value ~ particularly the Chondral Defect that endangers the length of his Career ~ I believe that it is wise to attenuate his Value because of it.
But I wouldn't go too far on that.
We don't know if Jack's Career may be shortened even by a Day.
It may just be interrupted at some point by Surgery.
We all know that every Prospect brings Risk to the Equation. And Jack brings more than most, I'd agree. But I also consider his Risk attenuated by my perception, above: That, Health aside, he brings far less Risk that most.
This kid is extremely likely to develop into an phenomenal Run Defender and a sensational Pass Defender.
We're talking about an Hall of Fame Talent, with a strong Chance of fulfilling that Talent, whose Career has a substantial but not, as far as we can see, an high Risk of being shortened by his Condition.
If it weren't for the extra Risk, I'd give Jack a #01 OverAll Grade.
How would you Value Sandy Koufax?
Grateful Thanks, as always, for the crucial Work done by the folks at Draft BreakDown!!
This is not is even remotely a Complaint, mind you, but rather a Warning: Caveat Emptor!!