Alabama Crimson Tide linebackerReggie Ragland
(19). Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports
Reggie Ragland, LB, Alabama
It seems Packers nation–at least those who are draft nuts, like myself–are already well aware of Reggie Ragland and what he could potentially bring to Green Bay’s defense if he was available to them in the first round.
Ragland is an outstanding three-down linebacker, who possesses a rare blend of size (6-2, 252) and athleticism. Typically, linebackers his size don’t move as fluidly as he does on the field. He’s a force against the run, but almost equally as good dropping in coverage or rushing the passer.
Alabama even likes to use Ragland as a defensive end on third downs in certain defensive looks. His 2.5 sacks and 6.5 tackles for loss echo his ability to make plays behind the line of scrimmage, but his team-leading 90 tackles this past season are an impressive feat on an Alabama defense loaded with NFL talent.
Ragland is a day-one starter as a rookie in the NFL and would be a welcomed sight on a Packers defense that needs to find a complement to Jake Ryan‘s game on the inside going into next season.
Clay Matthews is at his best on the outside, rushing the passer, so the Packers need to shore up things in the middle this offseason. There’s also no guarantee Sam Barrington will return from injury in 2016 and be the reliable player they expected him to be going into this past season.
Bowl Game: Good Year Cotton Bowl, Dec. 31st, 8:00 pm et. (ESPN) — Alabama vs. Michigan State
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