Jalen “Moneybacker” Reeves-Maybin – Senior / 6’0″ / 225 – Tennessee
- 2016: Virginia Tech
- 2015: Oklahoma, Vanderbilt, Alabama, Bowling Green
The Skinny: Jalen Reeves-Maybin is a potential hybrid player in the vein of Su’a Cravens and Eric Striker. He is a better tackler than both of those 2016 prospects. He is trustworthy in zone coverage even against speedy slot WRs. In the Vols scheme he played mostly as one of two LBs on the field. He needs to work on shedding blocks as he is not overly successful when squarely engaged. Reeves-Maybin also struggled to hip-pocket in man coverage and will bite on fakes. He understands angles and his ability to sense the flow of play is very evident. He is a strong hitter who certainly makes an impact upon engagement. His tackling could be slightly more efficient, hopefully, good coaching can smooth that out.
Fantasy Outlook: Reeves-Maybin is intriguing because he can play both LB/S in any kind of sub-package. The most likely scenario is that he will be a weakside linebacker in a 3-4 or a 4-3. His translation would likely be smoother in a 4-3. He was primarily the WLB in a nickel base package at Tennessee. He is used to playing behind four linemen and patrolling the gaps. His closing/game speed could really work well with a team like the Vikings. With Eric Kendrick hovering in the middle and Anthony Barr pounding the strong side Reeves-Maybin could have a lot of tackle opportunities off the weakside hash. Minnesota also has a nasty defensive line which could force a lot things his way.
The major problem with Jalen Reeves-Maybin in that type of 4-3 is his lack pass rushing skills off “the Edge.” Sure on occasion, he can provide a pressure or two. But, Mike Zimmer really likes to move his front-7 guys around to free up pass-rushing lanes. Reeves-Maybin does not have that kind of versatility, at least we have not seen it displayed on film. His versatility lies more in the back end.
In a 3-4 scheme like with the Titans he could rotate and eventually replace Derrick Morgan (who is a 4-3 DE anyway). Also in a 3-4 his versatility could enable the Titans to audible from base to nickel and not create a glaring mismatch. Pittsburgh is another 3-4 team that could use his multi-faceted skill set. In that 3-4 he could also shift inside to be the coverage ILB. He would need to bulk for this to truly take hold. Also, considering Reeves-Maybin is recovering from a nasty shoulder injury so his rookie snaps could be limited. If he remains healthy this year, he can go through a full offseason of NFL style conditioning. That will ensure his candidacy as a breakout player in 2018.
Combine/Pro Day: Due to his shoulder injury he was not healthy enough to compete at the scouting combine in February. During his pro day on March 31st he recorded a 4.65 40-time that would have tied for fifth at the combine amongst LBs. His 7.39 3-cone drill would have been well outside the top 15 combine LBs. For his size, I would have expected a little better speed numbers. His film does not reveal a lightning quick striker. His 27 TFLs in 36 college games speak to his instincts and reactionary tools. Reeves-Maybin’s 35.5 inch vertical was in line with what Jabrill Peppers (a similar hybrid type of player) and Zach Cunningham (similar coverage kind of backer) did at the combine. (***Pro Day results are never “Official”***)
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