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Road to the Draft: Jamie Collins

By Jay Skurski

Jamie Collins

Position: Outside linebacker
School: Southern Miss
Measurables: 6-foot-3, 250 pounds
40 time: 4.64 seconds. 225-pound bench press: 19 reps. Vertical jump: 41.5 inches. Broad jump: 11 feet, 7 inches. 3-cone drill: 7.10 seconds.
2012 stats: 92 tackles, 20 for loss, 10 sacks, four forced fumbles
Draft projection: Second round

Lowdown: Collins was a combine star, producing the best vertical jump and broad jump of all linebackers, a position he switched to during his sophomore year from safety after an injury. Tremendously productive player in his junior and senior seasons, registering 190 tackles, including 39.5 for losses, 16.5 sacks and 13 pass break-ups over those two years. … Has an athletic frame similar to current Bills linebacker Manny Lawson. … Takes good, long strides to help him close in on quarterbacks. … With his speed, has the ability to stay with tight ends in coverage.

Does not have a great first step, and currently lacks the upper-body strength to be an every-down defensive end. … Does not always display great effort. … Can be slow to recognize his position in zone coverage.

Played quarterback in high school, leading his Franklin County (Miss.) team to a state championship as a sophomore. … Originally signed with Auburn, but decided to stay in-state after the Tigers went through a coaching change. … Made a pre-draft visit to the Bills on April 3. Seems to offer the versatility new defensive coordinator Mike Pettine craves.

They said it: “NFL personnel are trying to get a feel for Collins’ football instincts to get more comfortable with his playing up as a linebacker full time in the NFL. Most 3-4 teams that I have spoken to have no concerns in this area, but teams that play 4-3 schemes are trying to figure out if Collins is best as an under-sized defensive end or a linebacker, and if so which linebacker position.” Russ Lande, National Football Post.

The Buffalo News is profiling 50 prospects in 50 days leading up to this month's NFL Draft.


2013 draft | Road to the Draft
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About Press Coverage

Tim Graham

Tim Graham

Tim Graham returned to The Buffalo News in 2011 after covering the NFL for three years at ESPN and for one year at the Palm Beach Post. Before that, the Cleveland native spent seven seasons on the Buffalo Sabres beat for The News and was president of the Boxing Writers Association of America.

@ByTimGraham |

Mark Gaughan

Mark Gaughan

Buffalo native Mark Gaughan started working at The News in 1980 and has been covering the Bills exclusively since 1992. He is a former president of the Pro Football Writers of America, and he is a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame selection committee.

@gggaughan |

Jay Skurski

Jay Skurski

Jay Skurski joined The News in January 2009. The Lewiston native attended St. Francis High School before graduating from the University of South Florida. He writes a weekly Fantasy column in addition to his beat writing duties.

@JaySkurski |