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2013 NFL Draft Prospects: DE/OLB John Simon Scouting Profile

Simon says, do you want me to play standing up or with my hand on the ground?


A player who the Broncos spoke to at the Senior Bowl is Ohio States DE John Simon. The big question with him is where will he play in the NFL? In college he's played DE, NT, OLB and ILB. His versatility could help and hurt him. Teams love versatility, but also not fitting into one specific postion may hurt him as well. What makes me really like this guy is that he has a non-stop motor. He's relentless and highly motivated. I love to have those type of guys on my football team personally. According too Simon is ranked as the 10th overall DE in Aprils NFL Draft and the 86th overall prospect. Simon expects to go anywhere from the late second to the 4th or even 5th rounds


John Simon had a very productive four year career at Ohio State. Simon totaled 154 total tackles, 42 tackles for a loss, 20.5 sacks, 10 pass deflections, and 2 forced fumbles. His best season came his junior and season seasons. In 2011 he totaled 53 total tackles, 16 for a loss and 7 sacks and in 2012 Simon totaled 44 tackles, 14.5 for a loss and 9 sacks.

54 John Simon

Hometown: Youngstown, Ohio

High School: Cardinal Mooney

Height / Weight: 6-2 / 263

Position: DL

Graduated: 2012

Ohio State Overview: John Simon was a leader on and off the field whose efforts were always exemplary ... Simon was repeatedly referred to as the heart and soul of the 2012 team by Meyer, and he has the distinction of being only the eighth two-time captain in school history and the first since James Laurinaitis in 2008 and 2009 ... he was twice named a semifinalist for the prestigious Lott IMPACT Award and in 2012 he was a finalist for the Fellowship of Christian Athlete's Bobby Bowden Award ... he capped his career by being named the Big Ten Conference's 2012 Nagurski-Woodson Defensive Player of the Year Award ... he was also named the Big Ten's 2012 Smith-Brown Defensive Lineman of the Year after leading the Big Ten in quarterback sacks (9.0 for minus-73 yards) and ranking second with 14.5 tackles-for-loss, totaling minus-87 yards ... his sacks and TFLs each ranked among the Top 25 nationally ... those numbers also boosted Simon to No. 7 all-time at Ohio State in both categories, with 20.5 sacks and 43.0 TFLs ... he was named all-Big Ten by both the media and the coaches and a third-team Associated Press All-American as both a junior and a senior ... in 2012 he was a second-team Walter Camp All-American and was voted as the Ohio State team MVP ... a four-year Varsity O letterwinner, Simon played in 50 games and started 37 consecutive games before a knee injury sidelined him for the final game of his senior season, a 26-21 win over Michigan that completed a 12-0 regular season for the No. 4-ranked Buckeyes ... during his senior season, Simon tied the school record with 5.0 tackles-for-loss (for minus-24 yards with two sacks and a forced fumble) against Nebraska and was named Big Ten player of the week and national defensive player of the week by the Bednarik, Lott IMPACT and National Performance organizations ... he had four quarterback sacks (for minus-36 yards; fourth-most yards lost for a game at Ohio State) vs. Wisconsin ... as a junior he had four TFLs against Illinois and he is now the only Buckeye to ever have a five-TFL game and a four-TFL game ... Simon's 87 TFL yards in 2012 rank ninth all-time at Ohio State and his career TFL yardage total of 195 yards ranks sixth all-time in school history ... Simon was honored with Ohio State's Bill Willis Award as the team's outstanding defensive player as a junior after leading the Buckeyes with seven quarterback sacks and 16 tackles for loss (for minus-59 yards), figures that ranked fifth and seventh, respectively, in the Big Ten Conference ... he also accumulated 53 tackles and broke up three passes ... he had a career-best 10 tackles in 2011 vs. Indiana ... as a true sophomore in 2010 he played in and started all 13 games and was named honorable mention all-Big Ten ... he returned a fumble 30 yards for a touchdown vs. Minnesota ... Simon played in all 13 games as a true freshman in 2009, recording 16 tackles on the season ... coaches honored him with the 1st Year Defensive Player Award.


Draft Profile for John Simon:

NFL.coms Scouting Report on John Simon:


Strong, high-motor defender. Can break down to tackle ballcarriers in the backfield. Combines agility with excellent upper-body strength to be a secure and explosive tackler. Works down the line with a blocker on his shoulder without giving up ground. Will pressure the upfield shoulder of slower tackles when selling out as a rusher, possesses enough flexibility to capture quarterbacks stepping up in the pocket. Patient when containing, stays engaged until ballcarriers goes inside or outside, then rips off to chase. Uses his hands very well, often batting down the arms of linemen attempting to block him. Displays good pad level. Two-time captain leads his teammates vocally and by example.


Shorter than many teams prefer in a defensive lineman, and his length is only adequate. Late to react to the snap, less than stellar first step. Slow in spin move attempts. Can struggle to get off blocks from better tackles and will lose sight of the ball at times. Might need to drop some weight to gain agility and quickness whether playing end or linebacker. Not very experienced getting deep drops in coverage or playing man-up for longer periods of time.



This two-time All-Big Ten pick and two-time Buckeyes captain lacks the height and length most NFL teams want in a defensive end, but teams with less stringent size requirements will covet his exceptional weight-room work ethic. He's late off the ball, and not an explosive athlete, but he understands pad level and hand usage. He's going to have to prove to teams that he can handle himself effectively enough in coverage.

Via: Scouting Report on John Simon:


Simon has a motor that never quits, playing extremely relentless as one of the best attacking defenders in college football the past few years. He has a strong upper body to swat and use his limbs to beat blocks with the natural power and forceful playing style to keep blockers off balance and shed.

Simon does a nice job setting the edge against the run and takes on blocks destructively, staying disciplined with excellent recognition skills. He takes aggressive angles in the run game and doesn't play hesitant, trusting his eyes and reacting in a flash. Simon tackles through the ballcarrier and has strong wrists and hands to secure stops, rarely missing tackles. He has good short-area quickness with good snap anticipation and dip off the edge to bend around the tackle and gain a step on blockers.

Simon plays every snap as if it's his last and doesn't know how to go half speed, playing motivated and focused. He is a smart, heady player to make impact plays against the run and pass, getting his hands up at the line of scrimmage. Simon is a two-year captain and there isn't a lot he hasn't seen, leading Ohio State as the heart of the team. He closes quickly and plays with excellent pursuit on defense and special teams coverage. Simon has versatile experience at both LE and RE, standing up and with his hand in the dirt, also moving inside to DT at times.


Simon is almost too bulked up, which limits his fluidity, and he lacks ideal arm length, making it tough for him to disengage at times. He is more of a one-speed rusher and doesn't flash consistent explosion, lacking creativity as an edge rusher. Struggled to cover running backs or tight ends in one-on-one coverage at the Senior Bowl, lacking the natural hip movement or footwork to quickly adjust and blanket his man.

Simon plays too energetic at times and will wear himself out due to his relentless attitude. He takes overaggressive angles at times and needs to control his intensity (roughing the passer penalty vs. California, 2012).

Simon suffered a minor right knee injury (bursa sac) against Wisconsin in 2012, missing the Michigan game (his final collegiate game).


Allen Bailey, DE, Kansas City Chiefs - It's tough to find an exact comparison for Simon, but Bailey comes close with their muscular frames, quick feet and relentless attitude. Simon isn't as big as Bailey (285 pounds), but he's just as strong.

-- Dane Brugler



2011 - Ohio State Sugar Bowl Highlight Video

John Simon vs Wisconsin 2011

John Simon vs Illinois (2011)

John Simon vs. Nebraska (2012)

John Simon vs Penn State (2012)

My Take:

I like Simon. He's a high effort guy who will give his all to the team, but he doesn't really have a position. His effort and relentlessness reminds me a lot of Wolfe. Now I'm not sure if Elway looks for that in his players or not, but it's not a bad trait to have. My issue is that I don't see a spot for him on the Broncos. He doesn't have the prototypical size for a DE and is a little big to be a 4-3 LB. Honestly he seems like a perfect fit for the Patriots or Ravens or any team that plays a 3-4 Defense. I would love for him to be a Bronco though, I'm just not sure he fits in Denver.

What do you think?

Go Broncos!