4-year starter at Virginia, making the switch from Safety to ILB his Sophomore year after adding weight to put him above 230lbs. Finished his career with 289 total tackles (114 coming his first year at ILB), 14.5 sacks and 6 forced fumbles over 46 games. Was a William V. Campbell award finalist in 2019; an award that recognizes academics as well as athletics in football and exemplary leadership.
Good size for the position; 6’2, 232lbs with a well-balanced build. Good AA; displays good explosiveness from the snap, plays fast and downhill with very good short area burst. He’s an effort and physical guy with a great motor. Shows good balance upon initial contact, continues to work through traffic, shows good patience at the LOS, and is relentless in his pursuit and does a good job keeping things in-front of him. Plays with good play strength and leverage to run through interior OL to blow up plays in the backfield. Shows good mental processing to quickly explode through gaps against both run and pass with good pad level and leverage to show good COD when he needs to re-direct his pursuit. Very good competitive toughness; takes on any opponent regardless of size, and demonstrates very good tenacity for all 4 quarters. Very good play speed; possesses sideline-to-sideline speed to chase down more athletic QB’s and RB’s and occasionally chases down a bubble screen.
2.23 seconds to rush 12 yards…Tremendous burst.
Adequate ability to slow himself down, break down and wrap up when he’s heads up for a tackle. For someone who was originally recruited as a Safety, he struggles in space to matchup with TE’s and bigger receivers in underneath coverage. Adequate job holding his ground at the 2nd level if an OL gets a free release, and doesn’t work his hands or quickness to counter and get back inside. Adequate ability coming off the EDGE; more of an ILB than anything else. Lacks real pass rush nuance, and will only win with pure speed, or bull rush. Adequate UOH at the point of attack and in block shedding; needs to work the hands better to create space, especially when he possesses all the other starting traits in his pursuit and athleticism.
Watching Mack’s film, you see him get hung-up on OL quite often, and the ball carrier blows by him. In most cases I would say that’s a huge knock, not being able to fill a hole, lack of toughness etc. But in this case, it appears to be a scheme issue, due to the lack of talent on the Virginia DL in 2019. Being asked to play the role of a 3 or 1 technique to neutralize the LOS and asking other LB’s to clean up behind him. That’s a lot to ask of an ILB at that level, but Mack handled it well. However, whether or not that LB was there to make the stop is another story, and something Mack shouldn’t always be held accountable for. Jordan Mack may be a mid-late day-2 guy, but one I feel steps in and plays meaningful snaps as a rookie. Although he may not be 100% ready to go, to me, I see all the starting traits you’d like to see from an ILB at this stage of his game and the tape is very consistent from his sophomore year, to his senior year. His closing speed is elite among the draft’s ILB’s, shows the best physicality and all-around versatility defending the run, and matching up against certain backs in the passing game in zone coverages. He’s got a knack for finding the ball but shows good discipline in his assignments to keep backside contain. He’s a 3-4 ILB and has much more value than that position than his ability coming off the EDGE, but his ability to work through the interior OL is exactly what you want. There needs to be some nuances worked out, but I’m also not saying he’s a 1st round guy, so that should be expected. Mack’s struggles are very obvious, and that makes it easier on scouts and coaches when molding this guy into what they want; it’s not necessarily an inconsistency if you can predict it. Mack could be a mid-3rd — early 4th round guy on a 3-4 scheme that steps in and becomes a starter in camp. There are teams like the Giants who would love to have someone like him because not only is he a good player, that playing style is infectious, and someone that defense needs to turn around its identity. Also, teams like Baltimore, Tennessee and Chicago are very realistic destinations. He’s someone that can play quality snaps, at an extremely low cost. Low risk, high reward type of guy.