The 2021 NFL Draft will be a great event for teams to start building for their future. Here is the Nick Bolton 2021 NFL Draft Profile.
Nick Bolton Background
Size: 5-foot-11, 237 pounds
2020 stats: 95 total tackles, 8 tackles for loss, 2 sacks, 5 passes defended, 1 fumble recovery
Over the last two seasons, Bolton has been one of the most productive linebackers in the country. After his junior season in 2020, he decided to declare for the 2021 NFL Draft.
Missouri signed Bolton as a three-star linebacker out of Texas. He got some experience as a freshman and registered 22 total tackles and one sack. Bolton stepped into the starting lineup as a sophomore and he produced. He had 103 total tackles, 8.5 tackles for loss, one sack and two interceptions. The Tigers finished the season with a 6-6 record. Bolton had a good 2020 season wtih 95 total tackles, 8.0 tackles for loss and two sacks. Despite Bolton’s good play, Missouri finished with just a 5-5 record on the year.
After racking up a lot of tackles in his college career, Bolton decided to leave after his junior season for the pros. He is currently projected to be a first or second round pick in the 2021 NFL Draft.
Bolton is great at reading and reacting to what an offense is doing. He can diagnose plays very quickly and is able to react appropriately. Against the run, he sees where a play is going and flows to the football. This awareness carries over to the passing game as well, as his football intelligence allows him to get a good read on the play.
His physicality and toughness against the run is very apparent. As mentioned, he reads the play well and runs to the ball. Bolton fills the running lanes well and brings the ball carrier to the ground. He is not often thrown off by misdirection and can shed blocks decently well.
He has great tackling ability because of his nose for the ball. Bolton gets to the ball and shows good form bringing opponents to the ground. Because of his strength and fundamentals, Bolton will rarely miss a tackle in the open field if the play is within reach.
While he has good weight for the position, Bolton doesn’t have good height or length. He is just 5-foot-11 and has 31.875-inch arms. This will impact his ability to shed blocks and to cover bigger receivers and tight ends at the NFL level.
Bolton doesn’t have great speed. He is able to win because of his awareness and instincts, but plays can go by him because he isn’t the fastest. This limits his range against the run and his ability to be effective in coverage, as he can’t run with the players he is covering at all times.
He is good against the run, but Bolton has a lot of work to do to become better in coverage. Bolton can be solid in zone coverage, but he can have troubles in man to man coverage. If he can improve his ability to mirror receivers and tight ends, he will be a more well-rounded linebacker.
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