2011 NFL Draft Profile: Robert Quinn


When the off season talks began, Robert Quinn was touted as a top five pick and was often is discussion about going to the Cards with the 5th pick. But the astronomical climb of Von Miller has has lost Quinn some of his hype. He is still considered a top pick, but after sitting a year out because of infractions and some injury concern due to a tumor, Quinn doesn't seem a sure bet.

Judging Quinn was a difficult to do because of a lack of film (no DVR'd game tape to save me this time) and the fact that he was a DE in college. 

First observations about him is that he isn't scared to be psychical. He has several moves, including a bull rush and can beat slower tackles to the outside. I wouldn't say his motor is 'relentless' as has been advertised, but when chasing the QB he is very tenacious. 

It was hard to study his hip movement (his ability to turn and run with a back/TE in coverage) so I relied on his times in the cone drill and the 20 yard shuffle, both indicators of explosiveness and agility. Both he was average in, with D-linemen beating him in several categories (he wasn't in the top 15 for the 20 yard shuffle). While his overall speed is impressive for a guy who is 265, his agility is not. He does use his hands very well and keeps his balance. 

From the game tape he consistently applied pressure in the passing game, whether it came from a bull rush or speed move. He generally holds the edge well on runs, but will get caught looking in the backfield which can put him out of position for tackles. He tackles well, and is aggressive. 

Reports from the combine said that he showed up in good condition but one scout said his legs looked "knobby kneed." While I am not sure if that really indicates anything truly important, it is an interesting observation. 

Overall it is hard to judge Quinn. Limited game tape and an okay combine haven't made it easier. What's special about Quinn was his ability to dominate as a sophomore. If he has taken this off year seriously and has worked on his technique, Quinn could turn into a probowl pass rusher. Or he could also be the next Gholston. He is definitely worth our 5th pick based on talent alone, but he seems more a project pick because of the transition and having the year off.

Personally, I would be surprised if the Cards picked him. It seems the FO has focused on high character guys who are gym rats. They also put a high emphasis on captaincy and academic awards. None of these categories fit Quinn, but than again his talent level is very intriguing and adding a bigger body to complement Schofield makes sense.

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