Checking Larry English’s Scouting Report Going Into Draft

September 2, 2010; San Francisco, CA, USA; San Diego Chargers linebacker Larry English (52) rides a stationary bike on the sidelines during the first quarter against the San Francisco 49ers at Candlestick Park. The 49ers defeated the Chargers 17-14. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-US PRESSWIRE

Since we are going over all kinds of different scouting reports on players at the Senior Bowl and we will go over more at the combine in preparation for the draft, I wanted to look back at a few scouting reports from some of our current players. Today, we will go over Larry English (thanks go out to Staff Writer Phil for this request).

Here is the scouting report from Walter Football written by Matt McGuire:

Strengths: Great build: strong and has solid muscle definition … Consistently impressive statistical production … Tough, physical … Gritty player who maximizes his talent on the field; great motor … Does a great job of anticipating the play and has a sixth sense you look for; Instinctive … Gives second effort as a pass rusher … Virtually unstoppable rip move … Gets leverage and powerfully executes the bull rush … Nice hand technique at point of attack … Brings leadership to the table … Outstanding character off the field.

Weaknesses: Does not have much lateral range … Lacks flexibility and some balance … Does not explode off the snap; burst concerns … Not versatile; strictly a 3-4 outside linebacker … Maximized body frame? … Can he pass rush standing up in the 3-4? … Huge durability concerns.

Summary: English is going to be a safe pick for the 3-4 teams, yet still has some upside in his game. I really do not see a 4-3 team spending a first- or second-round pick on him. English has great intangibles, but they are countered by his long injury history. What you see is what you get, and I am not concerned about him playing against lower level competition. English will likely come off the board in the low first to second round.

Player Comparison: LaMarr Woodley. Woodley had the same high motor, physical style of play coming out of Michigan and has thrived within the Steelers 3-4 scheme.

HUGE DURABILITY ISSUES!??!?! Why did we ignore those durability concerns?

Those durability issues are not even close to disappearing. Chargers fans can’t even tell if he is a good player because he spends so much time rehabbing from injury or sitting on the IR list. It would be nice to see him make it through a season and given an opportunity to get into games.

Will he ever break this trend? He might, but time is running out!

We can’t be taking these RISKS so early in the draft! In the first round this year, we have to make an impact selection.

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  • MikeTuck

    Nice #1 on AJ’s radar

    • http://boltbeat.com/ epadaon

      @MikeTuck i think AJ just looks for durability issues in scouting reports and put those on the top of the list

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  • gtr_donald

    Here is another one, from another source. Looking at his injury history, I don’t know if HUGE durability concerns at apt at the point before he was drafted. Dude broke his foot. I’m not sure that is preventable or even something one can attribute to being “injury prone.” If it was an ankle sprain, a hamstring issue, or something of that ilk, I’d agree, but how does one try to prevent broken bones?

    Analysis

    Positives: Solid linebacker build, with more than adequate upper-body strength and legs for the position. Good motor, hustles down or across the field until the play is completed, even if initially blocked. Changes direction in space well. Secure wrap-up tackler when man is in his area. Can use his arms to keep linemen and fullbacks off him when standing up. Stays balanced and upright most times on stretch plays. At times he can bounce off a block using his punch. Has quick, violent hands to stay free. Stays at home on option plays until last possible moment. Able to drop back off the line in zone blitzes and stay with tight ends. Strong week of practice at the Senior Bowl eliminated many of the concerns regarding English’s level of competition.

    Negatives: Lacks the bulk to play with his hand down in the NFL, which he did in college. Gets engulfed by better left tackles on inside pass rush moves, lacks the strength to bull rush and doesn’t quite have the speed to get the corner consistently (but has good closing speed when standing up). Fails to hold his ground when directly out of his stance and can’t get off the block quickly enough to get to the ball. Will need to prove he can handle coverage duties against better tight ends and that he has zone awareness. Needs to get lower in his backpedal, as he stands a bit tall.

    Compares To: ANTHONY SPENCER, Dallas — Some draft experts claim Larry English is the next Shawne Merriman, but that’s a stretch at this point. As a pass rusher, he shows great tenacity, but that seems to be the only consistent aspect of his game. There are too many contests where he got lost in too much trash talk and isn’t much of a factor. As an athlete, you have to be impressed with his power, but one look at his clocked speed makes you be concerned that he won’t be able to drop back and handle speedy slot receivers outside the short area.

    Injury Report

    2003: Only played in seven games as a high school senior due to an early-season ankle sprain.

    2004: Missed the final 11 games after suffering a shoulder injury vs. Maryland.

    2007: Suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his knee vs. Texas Christian in the Poinsettia Bowl (12/19), undergoing surgery in early January 2008.

    2008: Missed most of spring camp with a torn pectoral muscle…Played most of the season with pins inserted in his thumb after breaking his hand in fall camp.

    Pick Analysis: After watching their sack output drop significantly with Shawne Merriman injured, the Chargers add another pass rusher with English. The hard worker gives Ron Rivera a possible replacement for Merriman in the event of a rehab setback, and he gives the team three capable rushers in its 3-4 (Shaun Phillips, Merriman and English). With pass rushers at a premium, the Chargers made a wise choice.

    Copyright NFLDraftScout.com, distributed by The Sports Xchange.

    • http://boltbeat.com/ epadaon

      @gtr_donald man that is a lot of history of injury!

      i know what you are saying about breaking a foot as not necessarily something you could prevent.. but nonetheless, he finds ways to get injured. can’t deny the history that is there.

      it’s like when we signed bob sanders… we knew he would get injured, we just wondered how long he could contribute to the team before he did.

      • gtr_donald

        @epadaon I hear what you are saying, but some of those reports go back to his high school years! Here’s another example of a player some Charger fans were high on, Brian Cushing:

        Injury Report

        2004: Missed three games during his high school senior year with an ankle sprain.

        2005: Suffered a shoulder dislocation prior to the Arkansas contest (9/17), sitting out that game and also vs. Oregon (9/24), Arizona State (10/01) Arizona (10/08) and Notre Dame (10/15)…Underwent surgery after the season, missing 2006 spring camp.

        2007: Missed most of spring drills with a right hamstring strain…After spring camp, he underwent arthroscopic left knee surgery…Suffered a slight bone fracture and a high ankle sprain vs. Idaho (9/01)…Saw limited action the next two games vs. Nebraska (9/15) and Washington State (9/22), but re-injured the ankle vs. WSU, sitting out the next three games vs. Washington (9/29), Stanford (10/06) and Arizona (10/13).

        2008: Missed spring drills after undergoing arthroscopic ankle surgery…Played with a cast after suffering a broken bone in his hand vs. Oregon State (9/25)…Suffered a shoulder contusion vs. Arizona State (10/11).

        Copyright NFLDraftScout.com, distributed by The Sports Xchange.

  • MikeTuck

    There are those women who think they like the guy he has just a few problems, and it never works. people are who they are. You can get them to contain bad habits, but when it comes to bad body design, you set yourself up for injurys. The only way to stay on the field is to know your soft spots and guard them. Weakness in hands for instance. You want to fight for that extra yard and it gets you hurt. Get it next play. If Earl Campbell would have been taught to step out of bounds it’s no telling how great he could have been. Insted he’s known as the only running back to get flagged for unneccessary roughness.

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