2015 NFL DRAFT
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Freddie Roach

Height: 6-2 | Weight: 257 | College: Alabama
 
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Overview

The Human Environmental Sciences graduate made the environment for opposing quarterbacks a dangerous one during his 39 games as the Tide's starting middle linebacker. Roach's ability to hold ground at the point of attack was one of the main reasons Alabama's defense ranked first in the nation in scoring defense, second in total defense, fifth in pass defense, fifth in pass efficiency defense and ninth in rushing defense in 2005.

Roach was a standout linebacker and running back at Brooks High School. He was a two-time All-State pick and was the American General "Back of the Year" as a senior. Roach was a Super Senior selection by The Birmingham News and ranked fifth on The Tuscaloosa News Sweet Sixteen List.

Roach rushed for 1,277 yards and 18 touchdowns and had 194 tackles, including 23 stops behind the line and caused six fumbles, helping his team to an 11-2 record his senior year. He registered 155 tackles, four blocked kicks, 12 sacks, 1,082 yards rushing and 15 touchdowns as a junior. He added 158 tackles, six blocked kicks and 14 rushing touchdowns as a sophomore. For his career, Roach rushed for more than 3,000 yards, had over 500 career tackles and eleven blocked kicks.

Roach redshirted at Alabama in 2001. He started ten games in 2002, participating in 580 plays. He ranked sixth on the team with 63 tackles (37 solos), adding a sack, six stops for losses and five quarterback pressures at middle linebacker. He caused two fumbles, recovered another and returned his only career interception 41 yards for a touchdown.

Roach started twelve contests in 2003, finishing fifth on the team with 86 tackles (50 solos). He added a sack, five pressures and seven stops behind the line of scrimmage. He also caused and recovered a fumble while deflecting three passes. He lost his starting job at middle linebacker to Cornelius Wortham in 2004, but worked his way back into the starting lineup at weak-side outside linebacker for the final six games. In 548 plays, he was credited with 57 tackles (28 solos), two sacks and nine stops for losses. Roach had two forced fumbles, a fumble recovery and five pressures.

With Wortham graduated, Roach shifted back to middle linebacker in 2005. He earned second-team All-Southeastern Conference honors, but was bothered early in the season with a right elbow strain suffered on the season opener's first kickoff. He went on to record 66 tackles (38 solos) and 2.5 stops behind the line of scrimmage. He also caused a fumble and collected nine pass deflections.

In 50 games with the Tide, Roach started 39 times. He finished his career with 272 tackles (153 solos), which rank tenth on the school's all-time record list. He had four sacks for minus 18 yards, 24.5 stops for losses of 72 yards and seventeen quarterback pressures. Roach caused six fumbles and recovered three others for 8 yards in returns. He batted away fifteen passes and returned an interception 41 yards for a score.

Analysis

Positives: Has a thick, athletic frame with a thick chest, broad shoulders, good overall muscle tone, big bubble and thick thighs … Downhill type with the strength to stuff the run, but is best when playing in the box than on the move … Has the short area burst to pursue along the line and does a good job of staying low in his pads when making plays directed at him … Quick to read and diagnose plays, doing a good job of locating the ball when working through trash … Physical when taking on blockers at the point of attack and has the burst to avoid when shooting the inside gaps … Uses his leg drive and hand strength to stack up blockers and create a pile … Hits running backs with a thud and compensates for a lack of ideal playing speed by taking good angles in pursuit … Plays until the whistle and maintains balance while generating good pop when working in space … Solid special teams contributor (left guard on punt unit) who also lines up at times as a defensive end in the nickel package … Versatile player with experience at all three linebacker positions.

Negatives: More of a two-down linebacker who lacks the quickness to drop off in pass coverage … Needs to be more active with his hands in attempts to shed … Does a marginal job of protecting his legs from low blocks when on the move … Despite his strength, he prefers to slip off blocks rather than initiate contact (will battle tough when engaging blockers, but needs better hand placement) … Little too stiff in his hips to turn out of his backpedal smoothly … Best when making plays in front of him, as he does not have the timed speed to stay on the hip of receivers for long … lacks natural hands for the interception, letting the ball absorb into his body too much.

The three-year starter is the second member of his family to play football at Alabama. His half-brother, Tim Bowens, was a receiver for the Tide and is presently a member of the coaching staff, serving as the team's pro liaison. Roach is the emotional leader of the team and has very good practice and weight room habits.

Roach compensates for a lack of speed with his keen knowledge of blocking schemes and ability to quickly diagnose plays. He is more of a downhill performer who takes on blocks with good strength, but is more suited to play in the box than on the move. He has enough raw power to stand blockers up, but for some reason fails to keep his hands active as he struggles to shed.

Roach has the experience to play any linebacker position and also has seen action as a rush end with his hand down in a nickel package. He is a solid special teams performer, competing as the left guard on the punt unit. He has a wide base that lets him maintain position working in tight quarters and does a good job of pushing the fullback into the rush lanes.

His hip stiffness is evident when attempting to change direction. In pass coverage, it is better to remove Roach from the field, as he does not have the acceleration to mirror the receiver through the route. He will try to compensate for his slow feet by taking proper angles to the ball, but is not the type who has the range to pursue from sideline-to-sideline in attempts to chase down ballcarriers. He struggles in transition because of his marginal plant-and-drive agility, but will attack well when the play is in front of him.

Because of his versatility and power base, if a team is looking for a linebacker that can provide run containment, Roach would be a nice second day draft choice. He will never have the loose hips to excel in pass coverage, but brings additional value with his ability to play on special teams.

Career Notes

Ranks tenth in school history with 272 tackles, topped by Wayne Davis (327, 1983-86), Thomas Boyd (324, 1979-82), Woodrow Lowe (315, 1972-75), DeMeco Ryans (308, 2002-05), Marcus Spencer (303, 1997-00), Roman Harper (302, 2002-05), Cornelius Bennett (287, 1983-86), Robbie Jones (284, 1979-82) and Saleem Rasheed (280, 1999-01) … Graduated in December 2005 with a degree in Human Environmental Sciences.

2005 Season

All-Southeastern Conference second-team selection by the league's coaches for the second consecutive year … Started the final eleven games at middle linebacker, helping the team rank first in the nation in scoring defense, second in total defense, fifth in pass efficiency defense and pass defense and ninth in rushing defense … Ranked third on the team with 66 tackles (38 solos) … Had 2.5 stops for losses of 4 yards and credited with two quarterback pressures … Caused a fumble and deflected nine passes while participating in 548 plays.

2005 Game Analysis

Middle Tennessee … Suffered a right elbow contusion on the opening kickoff and spent the rest of the game on the sidelines (did not play a down on defense).

Southern Mississippi … Posted a pair of solo tackles, deflected two passes and had one pressure.South Carolina … Made four tackles (3 solos) and batted away two passes … Caused a fumble when he tackled tailback Mike Davis on a 3-yard run early in the first quarter, but South Carolina recovered the ball.

Arkansas … Knocked down three passes and delivered eleven hits (5 solos).

Florida … Posted six tackles (3 solos) with a pass break-up.

Mississippi … Followed with a five-tackle (3 solos) performance.

Tennessee … Credited with nine tackles and assisted linebacker DeMeco Ryans in stopping tailback Gerald Riggs Jr. for a 1-yard loss on a run up the middle in the first quarter.

Utah State … Added a pressure and seven tackles (2 solos).

Mississippi State … Was in on eight stops (7 solos).

Louisiana State … Deflected a pass and had two solo hits.

Auburn … Registered nine tackles (8 solos) with two stops behind the line of scrimmage … Took down tailback Kenny Irons for a 1-yard loss on the game's opening drive and stopped Irons for no gain on a third-and-3 play off left end at the start of the second quarter … Irons then attempted to bounce off left end at the beginning of the third quarter, but Roach stuffed him for a 2-yard loss.

Texas Tech (Cotton Bowl) … Closed out his career with three assisted tackles.

2004 Season

All-Southeastern Conference second-team selection by the league's coaches, despite starting only the last six games … Began the season playing behind Cornelius Wortham at middle linebacker before taking over starting duties at weak-side outside linebacker … Finished fourth on the team with 57 tackles (28 solos) … Added two sacks for minus 10 yards, nine stops for losses of 26 yards and five quarterback pressures … Caused two fumbles and advanced a fumble recovery 8 yards … Deflected one pass while participating in 548 plays.

2004 Game Analysis

Utah State … Sacked QB Brandon Cox for a 7-yard loss in the season opener.

Western Carolina … Posted five tackles (4 assists).

South Carolina … Caused a fumble and delivered eight hits (3 solos).

Kentucky … Had a 3-yard sack and four tackles (3 solos).

Southern Mississippi … In his first start for 2004, Roach responded with six tackles (3 solos), including one for a 4-yard loss and caused a fumble.

Tennessee … Added a pair of stops behind the line of scrimmage and came up with seven tackles (2 solos).

Mississippi State … Was in on four hits, including one for a 2-yard loss.

Louisiana State … Credited with nine tackles (3 solos) and two stops for minus 6 yards.

Minnesota (Music City Bowl) … Recorded nine tackles (7 solos) and returned a fumble recovery 8 yards.

2003 Season

Started every game at middle linebacker, ranking fifth on the team with a career-high 86 tackles (50 solos) … Credited with a 4-yard sack, seven stops for losses of 25 yards and five quarterback pressures … Recovered and caused a fumble … Also deflected three passes.

2003 Game Analysis

South Florida … Recovered a fumble.

Oklahoma … Added nine tackles (5 solos)

Kentucky … Followed with eight tackles (7 solos) and two stops for losses.

Northern Illinois … Accounted for eight hits, a 4-yard sack and two stops for minus 7 yards.

Arkansas … Registered a career-high fifteen tackles (7 solos).

Georgia and Mississippi … Made eight stops in each contest.

Southern Mississippi … Credited with ten tackles (7 solos), two stops for losses of 9 yards and a forced fumble.

2002 Season

Earned Freshman All-American honors from the Football Writers Association and The Sporting News … Named Freshman All-SEC and SEC Freshman Defensive Player of the Year by The Sporting News … Started ten games at middle linebacker, ranking sixth on the team with 63 tackles (37 solos) … Credited with a 4-yard sack, six stops for losses of 17 yards and five quarterback pressures … Caused two fumbles and recovered another … Had two pass deflections and an interception … Participated in 580 plays.

2002 Game Analysis

Middle Tennessee … Made his collegiate debut with ten tackles and returned an interception 41 yards for a touchdown.

Oklahoma … Followed with eight hits (3 solos).

Southern Mississippi … Came up with five tackles (4 solos), a 4-yard sack, two stops for minus 6 yards and a fumble recovery.

Mississippi State … Caused a fumble and had four stops.

Auburn … Registered five tackles and caused a fumble.

2001 Season

Redshirted as a freshman.

Injury Report

1999: Suffered a right knee torn medial collateral ligament as a junior in high school.

2004: Underwent arthroscopic right knee surgery to repair a torn meniscus during August camp, but did not miss any game action.

2005: Bothered during April camp with a right knee medial collateral ligament and meniscus irritation and could not participate in Pro Day agility tests … On the game's opening kickoff vs. Middle Tennessee in the season opener, Roach suffered a right elbow strain that forced him to sit out the rest of the game.

Agility Tests

Campus: 4.78 in the 40-yard dash … 385-pound bench press … 450-pound squat … 365-pound power clean … 36-inch vertical jump … 32-inch arm length … 8 7/8-inch hands … Right-handed … 10/26 Wonderlic score.

Combine: 4.93 seconds in the 40-yard dash. … 34-inch vertical jump. … 9'3" broad jump. … 4.42 seconds in the shuttle run … 7.51 seconds in the three-cone drill. … Did not participate in 225-pound bench press.

High School

Attended Brooks (Killen, Ala.) High School, playing football for head coach Bob Godsey …

Standout linebacker and running back … Two-time All-State pick and was the American General "Back of the Year" as a senior … Super Senior selection by The Birmingham News and ranked fifth on The Tuscaloosa News Sweet Sixteen List … Rushed for 1,277 yards and 18 touchdowns and had 194 tackles, including 23 stops behind the line and caused six fumbles, helping his team to an 11-2 record his senior year … Registered 155 tackles, four blocked kicks, 12 sacks, 1,082 yards rushing and 15 touchdowns as a junior … Added 158 tackles, six blocked kicks and 14 rushing touchdowns as a sophomore … For his career, Roach rushed for more than 3,000 yards, had more than 500 career tackles and blocked eleven kicks.

Personal

Graduated in December 2005 with a degree in Human Environmental Sciences … Half-brother, Tim Bowens, was a receiver at Alabama (1996-99) and presently serves as the squad's pro liaison … Son of Linda and Frederick Roach … Born 6/03/83 … Resides in Killen, Alabama.

 
 
 

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