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The Future 40, Prospect 8: Greg Hardy Scouting Report

February 15, 2010

A new series was formed nearly 2 weeks ago here at Bleed Green called The Future 40, and the next edition is here! The segment has and will continue to run every other day until late April as we provide you with in-depth scouting reports of some 2010 NFL Draft prospects, giving you information key to understanding some of the players’ strengths, weaknesses, projected round of selection, possibility of being picked by the Eagles, and much more! And because the Draft is an important event for the entire league, some of the top-ranked players not expected to go to Philadelphia will also be reported on. In the first look at a prospect, we evaluated Nebraska’s DT Ndamukong Suh, who many consider to be the best player in the entire rookie class. In the second, we examined powerful RB Jonathan Dwyer and in the latest few, FS Darrell StuckeyLB Sean WeatherspoonCB Joe Haden, QB Mike Kafka, and OT Ciron Black. This time around, we will go back to the defensive side of the ball and look at Greg Hardy:

  • Prospect Name: Greg Hardy
  • Position: Defensive End
  • College: University of Mississippi (Ole Miss)
  • Height/Weight: 6’4″, 270 pounds
  • Age: 21 years
  • Class Status: Senior

Summary: Despite attending the same high school as current Ravens’ lineman Michael Oher and other talented players, Hardy was never regarded as one of the best recruits to the collegiate level, and figured to fit in with a team in a reserve role. However, due to a variety of circumstances, Hardy was given opportunities in games quite often during his freshman season and impressed the staff. By the end of the year, he was officially in the starting lineup for the Rebels’ defense. His second campaign started off a bit rocky as he missed a pair of games because of a conduct suspension and only began to produce towards the later part of the season, but he ended up finishing 2007 with a personal-best 10 sacks and 3 forced fumbles. In ’08, Hardy’s tackle total dropped significantly, as did his repetition amount as a starter. Part of this was due to an early-season foot injury that kept him out of a trio of games, but a lack of consistency was also part of the problem. Even so, he ended his junior year with 8.5 sacks while earning All-SEC conference honors. In the offseason in between his junior and senior seasons, Hardy pondered the idea of declaring for the 2009 NFL Draft, and ultimately chose to stay for a final year at Ole Miss. It arguably hurt his stock as a professional rookie, for his 5 sacks and frequent injuries made his 2009 season look quite poor compared to the others. Nevertheless, Hardy is among this year’s Draft class’ best Defensive Ends, and does have the ability to play in the NFL productively.

Career Statistics:

YEAR TOT SOLO AST SACK STF STFY FF BK INT YDS AVG LNG TD PD
2006 49 27 22 3 0 0 3 0 0 0 0.0 0 0 0
2007 64 41 23 10 0 0 3 0 0 0 0.0 0 0 0
2008 17 11 6 8 0 0 0 0 1 22 22.0 22 0 0
2009 16 11 5 5 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.0 0 0 0

Notable Achievements/Awards:

  • All-American Honors (2007, 2008)
  • Freshman All-American Team (2006)
  • All-SEC Honors (2007, 2008)
  • Hendricks Award Watch List member (2009)
  • Led the SEC division in 2007 with 10.0 sacks

Strengths:

  • Explosive pass rush techniques
  • Can get quick initial jumps off the line
  • When healthy, is dominant in collapsing opposing teams’ passing pockets
  • Has great agility to get to the edge of the field and pursue an outside running play
  • Possesses dangerous maneuvers/moves to avoid good blockers
  • Reads opponents’ plays and schemes well
  • Utilizes big hands to help display upper-body strength
  • When given space, can reliably make open-field/immediate tackles
  • Has rare amount of athleticism for his position

Weaknesses:

  • Has durability issues that deserve serious consideration
  • Average sized for a Defensive End
  • Relies too often on speed and finesse moves and sways away from powering through blockers
  • Is containable with his inability to consistently defend the run
  • Once engulfed by a blocker, is typically unable to escape
  • Has potential character concerns, which were brought up in 2007 when he was suspended

Projected Round of Selection: 2-3

NFL Player Comparison: Adewale Ogunleye, Chicago Bears

We hope that everyone enjoyed the eighth report for The Future 40 prospect segment, and urge you to keep checking back for more scouting analysis as the series continues all the way up until the Draft! Also, remember that we will happily take and consider requests from our fans for this series! If you or another Eagle fanatic is interested in seeing a certain player be evaluated in The Future 40, be sure to contact us as soon as possible, and we will attempt to include your selected prospect!

(picture source)

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