JOK falling still has me stumped. So much so that I felt I had to write a new article about it. I did a bit more digging post draft and one of the things that seems to have pushed teams away is a heart condition, which came out late in the draft process. JOK has never had any issues with this and ultimately he was cleared by NFL doctors.
While that may have been one issue, another one which has been raised is his smaller stature for a LB, making him one of the smaller LBs in the NFL. As a counter argument it has widely been highlighted is that he makes up for it in athleticism and quite frankly has made it work against any and all opposition.
To add to that, he allows you to play base personell a lot, the fact that he can match up with almost anyone – plus play the run and blitz – means that you don’t have to take him off the pitch. Notre Dame took advantage of this and played base personell (3 LBs) vs 3 or 4 receivers over 45% of the time. For reference, in the NFL teams do – or have the option to do – this less than 10% of the time, most teams do it less than 3% of the time. In my opinion mainly because he is an extremely rare bodytype/athleticism/polished technique combo.
Some of his intangibles include being a leader and hard hitter, who is going to take the responsibility on the pitch and make plays, not just cover his assignment. don’t misunderstand me though he is also not someone who will sell out for the big play and if it means doing the dirty work so that someone else can make the play he will do that too.
I went ahead and racked my brain a little on who could be a comp for him. In that sense I started to move away from LBs and went for some hard hitting safeties who play around the box, but have some of that LB potential and coverage ability. I think that there are two examples, and if he lives up to those standards the Browns have got themselves an absolute steal:
|player 1||231lbs||6’3″||33″||9 1/2″||32″||116″||4.41s|
|JOK||221lbs||6’2″||33″||8 7/8″||36 1/2″||124″||4.15s|
|player 2||214lbs||6’0″||33″||9 1/4″||31 1/2″||120″||4.13s|
You can see the comparison above with JOK slotting in sizewise between the other two (the only thing that is sightly disappointing is the handsize, which I value highly). Once you get to the measurements though you see how explosive JOK is, compare to two players that are by no means slouches. Player 1 is Kam Chancellor and Player 2 is Jamal Adams. All three of them are high energy, competitive leaders that play a physical brand of football. I believe JOK could fall into a similar mold in the NFL. I also believe that this clears up how I think you can use him: Slot LB/ Dime Safety / Strong Safety – all of who roam a similar part of the field.