Dan Vitale, FB

School: Northwestern  |  Conference: BIG10
College Experience: Senior  |  Hometown: Wheaton, IL
Height/Weight: 6-1 / 239 lbs.
Projected Ranking
OverallPositionProj. Rnd.

Player Lowdown

Combine Results
40 Yd 20 Yd 10 Yd 225 Bench Vertical jump Broad Shuttle 3-Cone Drill
4.602.69-30 38 1/2-4.127.12
Workout Results
40 Yd 20 Yd 10 Yd 225 Bench Vertical jump Broad Shuttle 3-Cone Drill
4.522.691.6130 38 1/210'3"4.127.12

Player Overview

A four year starter, Vitale was a perfect fit for Northwestern's "Superback" position, which is a hybrid fullback, tight end and receiver role that asked him to be both a blocker and receiver. He posted consistent production each of the last four seasons, including team-highs as a senior with 33 receptions, 355 yards and four touchdowns, earning Second Team All-Big Ten honors.

Vitale is a versatile athlete with the receiving traits to be a safety valve underneath, but lacks the playmaking skills to threaten defenses with his speed. Vitale consistently shows up as a blocker and completes his missions, competing with urgency.

Strengths Weaknesses

STRENGTHS: Competitive point of attack blocker and happy to do the dirty work. Natural receiving traits and finds the football quickly to look it in. Comfortable with defenders crowding his air space to finish tough catches. Initial burst off the line to quickly enter his pattern. Leverages the field well as a route runner, finding soft spots in zones. Sinks and shuffles in pass protection to catch defenders.

Utilizes angles with improved hand use to enter the frame of his target. Very intelligent on and off the field. Versatile offensive weapon and split his time between fullback, wingback and slot tight end in college, lining up in the slot and backfield. Tough and selfless teammate, leading by example. Experienced on special teams coverages.

WEAKNESSES: Unthreatening after the catch and doesn't run as powerful or balanced as expected. Too many drops on his game film and needs to do a better job securing through the process. Lacks consistency in 50-50 situations. Breaks stride to secure grabs due to a limited catch radius. Needs to improve his tempo in/out of his breaks to create room to operate. Tweener size and lacks the length to block in-line.

Won't move bodies as a lead blocker and needs to improve his take-on leverage. Unreliable blocking in motion and doesn't properly break down in space to handle moving targets. Only six career carries.

IN OUR VIEW: Vitale projects as a jack of all trades, master of none type of prospect, lacking the difference-making skills to make a substantial impact on offense, but he has the make-up and toughness to be a core special teamer in the NFL.

Dane Brugler (3/8/16)

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