Scouting Report: Na'il Diggs
Diggs takes a major
step toward holding off Johnson for his starting spot.
By Bill Smith
Diggs took a major step forward in his struggle with Johnson for the starting
LB spot for the Carolina Panthers. Diggs
started the 3rd preseason game against Washington and played very well. His production should really help cement him
in one of the starting LB spots.
Playing the run:
Panther's system employs a naturally aggressive style. Diggs uses his experience to attack the run
rather than let it come to him. He is
almost always part of the tackle and is very seldom standing beside the
pile. In the first half, he was part of
4 tackles at or behind the line of scrimmage.
On 4 other plays, he was part of the tackle a couple of yards beyond the
line. Even when the run goes away from
him, he uses the proper angles to insure that if the tackle is missed, he gets
the runner after a reasonable gain.
awareness is also above average. He
recognizes screen passes and draw plays being set up and does his part to break
up the play. He then uses his athletic
ability to prevent a gain.
One area he
has struggled with in past years was getting off a blocker to get to the
play. He is using his hands much better
this year and prevents a blocker from grabbing and locking onto him.
Playing the pass:
combination of speed and athleticism has always made Diggs good in pass
coverage. He is equally capable of zone
or man coverage. He has the speed to
cover a RB in a deep in or middle pass.
He also uses his experience to blitz when he is released of his coverage
responsibility because the RB or TE stays in to block. He attacks and is able to avoid allowing the
blocker to lock onto him. He contributed
to a defense that totally snuffed out the Redskins first team offense in the
He did not
allow a completion to his receivers and assisted on generating the pressure
that caused a couple of sacks.
Bill Smith is a
former coach of several semi-pro teams and has scouted talent. He is a senior writer for http://BrutusReport.com. He has
also published several novels on http://ebooks-library.com/index.cfm and edits http://fryingpanpolitics.blog.com