04/30/2012 - A closer look at the Buccaneers' picks: Round 2/58 - Lavonte David, LB, 6-1, 233, Nebraska...David was a junior college transfer who hit it big immediately for the Cornhuskers and became an all-conference player. He will likely play weak-side linebacker for the Bucs. - The Sports Xchange
David is Mr. Max, as in maximum effort, attitude, results and, unfortunately, his size, which he cannot increase any more. He reaffirmed his athleticism at the Combine with an unofficial 40-yard time of 4.65 seconds and an explosive vertical jump of 36.5 inches.
NFL scouts aren't sure whether to play him at linebacker or strong safety. But somebody will draft him, put him on the field somewhere and he will do what he has always done -- tackle people. He worked hard to get this far, so being told he is too small won't phase him.
David had a sensational high school career with Miami Northwestern's No. 1-ranked team, but due to low grades he played at Fort Scott Community College, where his team lost a national championship game to Cam Newton's Blinn College.
When he finally arrived at Nebraska, David proved he was a tackling machine by setting a school record with 152 tackles in 2010 and finished his career with 285. He has pass coverage and ball reaction instincts to be an excellent nickel linebacker.
Read & React: Tough player with excellent instincts and quick reaction time, involves himself in many run and pass plays all over the field. Occasionally guesses, flying into holes instead of finding the ball then attacking it and leaving his area open to receivers and running lanes.
Run defense: Plays mostly in the box, flies through creases to wrap up the legs of backs trying to find a hole or attempting to get to the sideline. Despite his lack of size, attacks oncoming linemen with a punch or stiff-arm into their chest and makes tackles in the box with blockers on his back. Gives and gets the worst of collisions inside.
Pass defense: Strong in coverage, often used as the only linebacker on the field against spread defenses. Possesses the quickness to stay with running backs on wheel routes or trail across the middle. Stays with underneath routes while in zone, able to break up passes in front of receivers with front hand without interfering. Gives up size to most NFL-caliber tight ends and better backs separate during routes with length and strength. Bites on aggressive arrow routes, loses his balance when trying to change directions at times.
Tackling: Hustling chase tackler who hits the thighs and wraps up legs very effectively. Tries to strip the ball when tackle is secured, has good success even against tight ends. Bigger ballcarriers can stiff-arm him in the open field because of his lack of size and length, but it does not happen too often.
Pass Rush/Blitz: Explodes through creases to reach the passer, bringing down most with a strong hit. Also chases down quarterbacks escaping the pocket to rack up sacks. Rips off running back blocks to chase the passer but freezes too often when initially facing them, making him late to reach the ball.
Intangibles: Good football work ethic and intelligence. Possesses strong character and humble attitude, called "coach's dream" by Nebraska head coach Bo Pelini.