Height: 5'11" Weight: 245 lbs
Strengths: Elite-level football instincts. Chris Borland just flat-out gets it! What he lacks in measurables he makes up with his knowledge of the game and ability to read/react. He excels in deciphering run/pass keys, and then attacks the ballcarrier or drops in coverage instantly. Borland is a prototypical run defender who shoots gaps like a young London Fletcher. He won't catch a RB from behind but his quickness and change of direction pop out at you on the film. Borland ranks #2 in the nation in tackles over the last 3 years (only 2 tackles behind Keith Smith). His pursuit and strength make him a tackling machine.
Weaknesses: Short, "slow", small hands, short arms, and has an injury history. His small stature calls into question his ability to cover tight ends. At 5'11", Borland would be grouped with Stephen Tulloch and Joe Mays as the shortest ILB's in the NFL (among those that started at least 8 games in 2013). He's not going to blow the roof off of the combine either, look for him to clock times in the mid-4.8 range. Also, he missed all but 2 games in the 2010 season due to a shoulder injury. His reckless abandonment sometimes leads to missed tackles.
Bottom Line: People label him as slow but he epitomizes the term "football fast." Take his measurables and throw them out of the window. The guy is a pure football player! The Zach Thomas and London Fletcher comparisons are on point. I know the game has changed since those guys first laced up their boots but guys that put it all on the line still have great value. He does have a lower ceiling than C.J. Mosley but, at the very least, Borland will be a special teams ace...who also kicked 3 PATs in his freshman year and would have been responsible for "long field goals" this year.
Projected Round: Late 2nd- Early 3rd
Team He Best Fits On: 3-4 Defense. Would not be surprised if an AFC North team (Baltimore, Cleveland, Pittsburgh) reaches in the 2nd round for him.
Highlight Reel: You'll see some jersey pulling (which is scary) but you'll also see how relentless this guy truly is. Favorite play is at 2:01. Defense could really use a TFL guy like him.
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Ultimate Chris Borland Highlights | HD (via TheFootballman175)
***Bonus Highlight***: High school tape but impressive nonetheless.
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Kettering Alter's Chris Borland Makes a Flying Tackle (via AlterFootballRocks)