Colts.com takes a closer look at the 35 linebackers invited to this year’s NFL Combine. The 2013 combine takes place Indianapolis and begins on Feb. 20, spanning six days. The linebackers invited are as followed:
*Indicates eligibility remaining
Kiko Alonso – Oregon
-Alosno has overcome two arrests during his time in Eugene and has made the most of a chance to redeem himself. The six-foot-four-inch linebacker is known for his instincts and was named the Defensive MVP of the 2012 Rose Bowl after recording 1.5 sacks and a third quarter interception.
Sam Barrington – South Florida
-A bit undersized at 230 pounds, Barrington was a 36-game starter in the middle of the Bulls linebacker corps. He earned All-Big East honors this past season and finished his career with 258 tackles, 21.5 of those for loss.
Steve Beauharnais – Rutgers
-Beauharnais is coming off a Senior Bowl invite after finishing his career with 40 consecutive starts. This past season, Beauharnais had 76 tackles for the nation’s No. 10 defense.
Jonathan Bostic – Florida
-Playing in the middle of a vaunted Gators defense, Bostic started 32 games over his four years in Gainesville. Bostic compiled 237 tackles with 19 tackles for loss during his time at Florida.
Arthur Brown – Kansas St.
-Brown, the brother of Eagles running back Bryce Brown, is coming off a 2012 season in which he was named Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year. Brown spent his first two years of college at the University of Miami before returning to his home state of Kansas, where the inside linebacker was one of the nation’s best recruits in 2007.
Jamie Collins – Southern Mississippi
-Despite a zero-win season in 2012, Collins brought some accolades the Eagles way. Collins racked up 20 tackles for loss and 10 sacks and has established himself as an intriguing outside linebacker at the next level.
Zaviar Gooden – Missouri
-A former safety that grew into a linebacker, Gooden is considered one of the fastest linebackers heading to Indianapolis and the question remains whether his 230-pound frame can hold up in the NFL.
Khaseem Greene – Rutgers
-After former Rutgers coach Greg Schiano moved Greene from safety to linebacker, the success began pouring in for a player that accounted for 277 tackles in his final two seasons. Greene is one of just two players in Big East history to win back-to-back Defensive Player of the Year awards.
Brandon Hepburn – Florida A&M
-Coming from the FCS level, Hepburn has ideal size and speed that would seem to equate to the NFL level. Hepburn is a six-foot-four-inch, 242-pound linebacker and also excels away from the gridiron after being named to the 2012 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team.
Gerald Hodges – Penn St.
-Hodges was apart of a formidable Nittany Lions linebacker corps this past season. In 2012, Hodges finished fourth in the Big Ten with 109 tackles and was a two-time All-Big Ten honoree.
Devonte Holloman – South Carolina
-After a strong career at the safety position, Holloman slid down to the linebacker slot and excelled in 2012. Holloman played in 51 games during his four years in Columbia, totaling 207 tackles.
*Jelani Jenkins – Florida
–Jenkins was one of the top players in the nation coming out of high school back in 2008. He was a three-year starter at Florida and the undersized linebacker finished his career with 31 starts and 182 tackles.
Nico Johnson – Alabama
-Next in line in the Crimson Tide’s pantheon of great linebackers is Johnson. Ever since his freshman season, Johnson has found himself in the mix at linebacker for Alabama and totaled 16.5 tackles for loss during his four seasons in Tuscaloosa.
*Jarvis Jones – Georgia
-Jones career began at USC but a spinal cord injury forced him to transfer home to Georgia and sit out the 2010 season. In his last two seasons, Jones did more than just show he could play football again. He racked up 44.0 tackles for loss and 28 sacks in a pair of All-American seasons in Athens.
A.J. Klein – Iowa St.
-Klein was a tackling machine during his time in Ames. During his four seasons, Klein recorded 342 career tackles and his four interceptions returned for a touchdown tied an NCAA record for linebackers.
Jake Knott – Iowa St.
-While Klein was racking up all the tackles, Knott was sidelined with a shoulder injury that ended his season in late October. Knott was a first-team All-Big 12 selection in 2011 and had five double-digit tackle games before his senior season ended.
John Lotulelei – UNLV
-As an undersized inside linebacker, Lotulelei still earned All-Mountain West honors while totaling 120 tackles in 2012. Lotulelei had a career-high 19 tackles against Nevada this past season.
Brandon Magee – Arizona St.
-Magee recovered from an Achilles injury that ended his 2011 season with 104 tackles this past year. Magee is also a MLB prospect after signing a contract with the Boston Red Sox.
Michael Mauti – Penn St.
-Mauti was the face of the Nittany Lions players that did not abandon the program after sanctions were announced this past year. The All-Big Ten linebacker had his senior season end early due to a knee injury but his character speaks for itself as according to the NFL Network, Mauti has sent a handwritten letter to all 32 general managers about how much football means to him.
Lerentee McCray – Florida
-McCray is a much bigger prospect at 249 pounds than his fellow Florida linebackers in Bostic and Jenkins. At six-feet-three-inches, McCray figures to be slotted into an outside linebacker position at the next level.
Kevin Minter – LSU
-LSU is known for its linemen but Minter has made a name for himself at the linebacker position. As a 2012 Butkus finalist, Minter racked up 130 tackles, 15 for a loss and four sacks.
Nick Moody – Florida St.
-Injuries over the final two seasons of Moody’s tenure in Tallahassee have restricted the 233-pound linebacker. In 2009 and 2010, Moody played in 26 straight games, totaling 112 tackles.
Sio Moore – Connecticut
-While he isn’t the biggest linebacker heading to Indianapolis, Moore did pile up 274 tackles as a three-year starter. Moore is known for his instincts and ability to react quickly to plays sideline-to-sideline.
*Alec Ogletree – Georgia
-While Jones was tearing up things on the outside of the Bulldogs defense, Ogletree was adding up a season that ended with 111 tackles. His numbers won’t be the talk this week as Ogletree was arrested on a DUI charge over the weekend.
Sean Porter – Texas A&M
-Porter played mainly on the weakside of the Aggies 4-3 defensive scheme. As a three-year starter, Porter is an athletic linebacker that was named first team All-SEC in 2011.
Keith Pough – Howard
-Scouts raved about Pough’s performance at the Shrine Bowl, with his physicality and leadership standing out to NFL personnel. Howard has produced numerous NFL prospects including Colts safety Antoine Bethea.
Kevin Reddick – North Carolina
-Reddick has been a starting linebacker for the Tar Heels since arriving on campus back in 2009. At the next level, Reddick will be slotted as an inside linebacker and finished his senior season with 85 tackles.
Etienne Sabino – Ohio St.
-When Sabino arrived to Columbus back in 2008, he was thought to be next in line for Buckeyes turned into NFL. Sabino played in 47 games and totaled 119 tackles during his time with the Buckeyes.
Jonathan Stewart – Texas A&M
-After two seasons of playing on the outside, Stewart seems to have found a home at inside linebacker. The physical, 244-pound Stewart combined for 26 tackles against Florida and Oklahoma this past season.
Bruce Taylor – Virginia Tech
-Taylor has the versatility to play on the inside or outside at the linebacker position and led the team in sacks this past season with 5.5. Taylor showed this season that he has recovered from a foot injury that ended his season midway through 2011.
Mike Taylor – Wisconsin
-As a four-year, 47-game starter, Taylor was a tackling machine for the Badgers. He racked up 378 tackles, 38.5 tackles for a loss during his time in Madison. Taylor won a state championship in wrestling during his senior season of high school.
Manti Te’o – Notre Dame
-It’s been a whirlwind senior season for Te’o. NFL teams will question Te’o’s hoax of his supposed girlfriend and try to uncover any other details on the Heisman finalist. On the field, Te’o totaled over 400 tackles during his four-year career at Notre Dame and his seven interceptions this past season were the most for any FBS linebacker since 2001.
Chase Thomas – Stanford
-Thomas returned for his final season in Palo Alto and continued to be a force off the edge. Thomas combined for 32 tackles for loss and 16 sacks during his final two seasons at Stanford.
Cornelius Washington – Georgia
-While Washington doesn’t posses the same accolades that his other Georgia defenders do, but he is known for making the big play. In the 2012 SEC Championship game, Washington blocked a third quarter field goal attempt by Alabama and the Bulldogs took the blocked kick and returned it for a touchdown.
Tom Wort – Oklahoma
-Wort recovered from a season ending knee injury back in 2009 to start 33 games over his final three years in Norman. From his middle linebacker position, Wort recorded 190 tackles, 17.5 of those for loss.
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