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2019 NFL Draft: Scouting Michigan linebacker Devin Bush

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Could Bush be the Broncos answer at inside linebacker?

NCAA Football: Air Force at Michigan Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

One prospect who may interest the Denver Broncos in the first-round of the 2019 NFL Draft is former Michigan linebacker, Devin Bush. He’s a 5’11”, 234lb linebacker who is considered one of the top off the ball linebackers in the entire draft. Bush is ranked as the second best linebacker in the 2019 NFL Draft according to The Draft Network, and is ranked as the 13th overall prospect in the entire draft.

NFL Network’s draft analyst Daniel Jeremiah ranks Bush as his 14th overall prospect in the 2019 NFL Draft.

Bush is a little undersized for the position (5-11, 234 pounds), but he makes up for it with instincts, twitch and production. He’s excellent as a zone dropper against the pass -- quick to key routes and get a jump on the ball. In man coverage, he has the speed to run with tight ends and running backs, but he gets a little too grabby down the field. He is an excellent blitzer, using a dip/rip move to defeat running backs. Bush really excels in the run game. He is quick to identify, fill and chest up runners. He is also capable of shocking and shedding guards when they work up to the second level. He has a high batting average as a tackler and provides some huge hits. Overall, Bush is a three-down linebacker, and he’ll provide the team that drafts him with a physical presence.

Bush played a total of three seasons at Michigan and was a consistent force for the Wolverines defense. During his three-year career at Michigan, Bush totaled 172 tackles, 18.5 tackles for a loss, 10 sacks, 1 interception, and 11 pass deflections. This past season, Bush totaled 66 tackles, 8.5 tackles for a loss, 4.5 sacks, and 4 pass deflections.

Here are the accolades Devin Bush earned during his time at Michigan via mgoblue.com.

  • Consensus All-American in 2018
  • Two-time Walter Camp All-American (first team, 2018; second team, 2017);
  • Two-time Associated Press All-American (second team, 2018; third team, 2017)
  • Football Writers Association of America (FWAA) All-American (first team, 2018)
  • Sporting News All-American (first team, 2018)
  • Sports Illustrated All-American (first team, 2018)
  • American Football Coaches Association All-American (first team, 2018)
  • Two-time Butkus Award Finalist (2017-18)
  • Bronko Nagurski Award Finalist (2018)
  • Big Ten Woodson-Nagurski Defensive Player of the Year (2018)
  • Big Ten Butkus-Fitzgerald Linebacker of the Year (2018)
  • Two-time All-Big Ten honoree (first team, coaches, 2017-18; first team media, 2018; second team, media, 2017)
  • Associated Press Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year (2018)
  • All-Big Ten selection by the Associated Press and The Athletic (first team, 2018))
  • Second team All-Big Ten honoree by the Associated Press (2017)
  • Recipient of the 2017 and 2018 Roger Zatkoff Award, presented to Michigan’s top linebacker
  • Recipient of the 2018 Team Defensive Player of the Year Award
  • Played in 39 career contests, including 32 at linebacker, with 25 starts
  • Three-time letterman (2016-17-18)
  • Two-time Academic All-Big Ten honoree (2017-18)
  • Voted a Team Captain by his teammates (2018)

Devin Bush

Linebacker | Junior | Michigan

Height: 5’11” | Weight: 234lbs | 40-time: 4.43 seconds

Arm length: 32” | Hands: 9 5/8”

Bench Press: 21 reps | Vertical Jump: 40.5 inches | Broad Jump: 124.0 inches

3-Cone Drill: 6.93 seconds | 20-Yard Shuttle: 4.23 seconds

Film Room:

Scouting Report:

Strengths:

  • Compact but well built frame
  • Strong and balanced
  • Excellent range and closing ability
  • Sideline to sideline player
  • Explosive player
  • Productive blitzer
  • Violent tackler who finishes his tackles
  • Effective in coverage
  • Smooth player with quick feet and loose hips
  • High football intelligence who trust his eyes
  • Motor never quits and plays with his hair on fire
  • Plug and play starter at ILB
  • Team captain in 2018

Weaknesses:

  • Shorter than you prefer but fits the new NFL mold at LB
  • Lack of height could be an issue in coverage at times
  • Overaggressive in pursuit at times
  • Block shedding bigger lineman will always be an issue
  • May never be the best run defender

Mockdraftable Spider Graph:

Quotable:

The Draft Network’s Kyle Crabbs on Michigan linebacker, Devin Bush.

“Devin Bush is a player who is set to benefit from this new era of play in the NFL. Bush’s mobility experience in numerous types of responsibilities against the run and upside as a 3rd down defender (blitz ability and potential in coverage) set him up for an impact role. Traditional reps thumping into interior gaps vs. OL takes Bush away from strengths, however. He should be utilized primarily in a gap penetration scheme with a strong DL.”

Does linebacker Devin Bush make sense for the Broncos in the first-round of the 2019 NFL Draft?:

I really like how Bush plays and he would fit exactly what the Broncos need.

He has smooth hips an quick feet to effectively drop back in coverage. He has the speed and range to be a sideline to sideline player making tackles all over the field. He’s a new-age linebacker who will thrive in nickel/sub-packages

He will need defensive lineman to eat up blocks and allow him to make plays in the backfield or blitz to be an effective run stopper. He’s not going to shed blocks very well and could be a liability in these situations. But these situations are becoming less and less prevalent so I am not sure how big of a deal it actually is.

Now he is undersized, but he’s not much smaller than Devin White who is a fan favorite. These measurements go height, weight, arm length, hand length, and wing span and official measurements from the Scouting Combine.

Devin Bush: 5-11”| 234lbs | 32 | 9 5/8” | 76 1/2

Devin White: 6-0” | 237lbs | 32 1/8“ | 9 3/4” | 75 7/8

So they’re one inch and three pounds different than each other. So if one prospect is considered “undersized” then the other is as well.

I wouldn’t be upset if Bush is the guy at 10th overall, but I think that would be a tad early for a player like him with these limitations, but again, I wouldn’t be upset about it all. He would step in and be an effective sub-package player who has the potential to be an effective three-down linebacker who’ll be a tackling machine.

Poll

Do you want the Broncos to draft linebacker Devin Bush in the first-round of the 2019 NFL Draft?

This poll is closed

  • 73%
    Yes
    (335 votes)
  • 26%
    No
    (123 votes)
458 votes total Vote Now