The 2023 NFL Draft will be a great event for teams to start building for their future. Here is the Trenton Simpson 2023 NFL Draft Profile.
Trenton Simpson Background
Size: 6-foot-3, 240 pounds
2022 stats: 72 total tackles, 4 tackles for loss, 2.5 sacks, 3 passes defended, 2 forced fumbles
Simpson made an impact for Clemson over the last three seasons, specifically over the last two. Now he is in the 2023 NFL Draft.
Out of high school, Simpson was a five-star prospect who signed with the Tigers. In 2020, Simpson had 28 total tackles, 6.5 tackles for loss, four sacks and one forced fumble. He stepped into a larger role in 2021 with 65 total tackles, 12.5 tackles for loss, 6.5 sacks and two passes defended. His play aided Clemson going 10-3. He returned for 2022, notching 72 total tackles, four tackles for loss, 2.5 sacks, three passes defended and two forced fumbles. Simpson led the team to an 11-3 record and an Orange Bowl appearance.
Following the season, Simpson decided to forego his remaining eligibility to go pro. He is a projected first or second-round pick.
Trenton Simpson Strengths
Simpson has great size for the position. He is 6-foot-3 and 240 pounds, which makes him a good build for an NFL linebacker. Simpson has solid play strength that comes from his size. He also has great length, which with his strength, he can use to disengage from blocks.
His athleticism, especially given his size, sets him apart from other linebackers in this draft. He can fly to the football against the run and make tackles that other linebackers can’t get to. His speed also comes in handy in coverage, as he has good range. He uses his speed, quickness and lateral agility as a pass rusher as well, as he can create pressure as a blitzer. His athleticism allowed him to line up all over the defense for Clemson.
He is good in coverage, especially when it comes to zone. Simpson shows that he has the range to play zone coverage, but he also reads the quarterback’s eyes decently well. Once he sees where the quarterback is going with the ball, he flies to it and can make plays on the ball. He has the athleticism to be a solid man coverage linebacker as well.
Trenton Simpson Weaknesses
At the next level, Simpson will need to improve his awareness and his play diagnosis. There are times where he falls for misdirections and play-action passes. Not only does it take a second for diagnosing trick plays, he can also have trouble reading where the football will be run.
Against the run, Simpson can take better angles to the football. He has good range, but his pursuit can be limited because he will take the wrong route to the ball. If he takes better routes to the football, he can chase and tackle with some of the best linebackers in the league.
He needs to work on shedding blocks at the next level. In college, he showed he could get through traffic, but he needs to stack and shed to make even more plays on ball carriers. While he isn’t a bad run defender, he could really improve in this area if he works on shedding more.
Projected Draft Range: First Round Pick-Second Round Pick
Draft Grade: Second-Round Pick
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