• My Scores
  • NFL
  • MLB
  • Golf
  • NCAA FB
2016 NFL DRAFT
player photo

Jonathan Alston

Height: 6-5 | Weight: 306 | College: South Carolina
 
Copyright NFLDraftScout.com, distributed by The Sports Xchange
Overview

Alston is a late bloomer who has developed into a very effective edge rusher from the strong-side outside linebacker position. He is a fluid open-field runner with excellent range and also has excelled on the special teams coverage units. Alston combines speed, quickness and athleticism, along with great instincts and has the ability to get in the opponent's backfield.

Alston was regarded as one of the top linebackers in the southern United States at Loyola College Prep School. He was named to Super Prep's All-Southwest Region team as a senior, adding Class AA All-State, All-City and All-District honors that year. He was also an All-District pick at running back and earned Academic All-State honors. Alston earned All-District and Academic All-District honors after his junior season and was an All-District choice as a sophomore.

As a linebacker, Alston registered 134 tackles and 21 stops for losses in his senior season. He played free safety, middle linebacker and tight end as a sophomore and started at running back as a freshman. He was a member of the National Honor Society and named a 2000 Wendy's High School Heisman Student.

Alston redshirted in 2001 at Stanford, performing on the scout team as a middle linebacker. He began the 2002 season as a reserve outside linebacker, but ended up starting five games in the middle of the year. He finished the year with 30 tackles (14 solos) and two sacks. Alston then spent the 2004 season learning how to play on the outside. In 10 games, he totaled 21 tackles (12 solos) with three sacks and a forced fumble.

In 2004, Alston was the only player in the Pac-10 Conference to finish among the top six in sacks (fourth with 9.5), fumbles forced (tied for fifth with three) and tackles for loss (sixth with 14.0). He produced 61 tackles (37 solos) from the strongside linebacker position. He added All-Pac 10 honorable mention in 2005, as he registered 52 tackles (31 solos) and ranked second on the squad with 6.5 sacks and 9.5 stops behind the line of scrimmage. He also caused three fumbles, intercepted a pass and blocked a kick.

In 43 games with the Cardinal, Alston started 27 times. He finished his career with 164 tackles (94 solos), 21 sacks for minus-177 yards and 29.5 stops for losses of 197 yards. He caused eight fumbles and recovered two others. Alston also had two interceptions, a pass breakup and a blocked kick.

Analysis

Positives: Has a lean, angular frame with tight muscles, long limbs and explosive acceleration coming off the edge … Has valid instincts and awareness, as he does a very good job adjusting on the move, showing a nose for the ball … Does a nice job of avoiding blocks in attempts to fill the rush lanes … Does not have the bulk and raw power to stack and control, but is effective at pushing lead blockers back through holes … Has the hand usage to control and reroute tight ends in their release … Light on his feet and has the lateral agility and balance to thread through traffic … Delivers good hip explosion and extends his arms to wrap and make sure tackles … His ability to reroute receivers and anticipate the pass could see him shift to safety at the pro level … Understands zone concepts and is quick to react and get into position to make plays on the thrown ball …

Very quick coming off the edge, generating the explosive burst needed to close … Also demonstrates fine timing and agility to get a jump on the blitz.

Negatives: Plays much bigger than his size indicates and shows good hand usage, but still lacks the bulk and anchor to hold ground at the point of attack … While he is seldom rocked back, he can get neutralized by bigger blockers … Is best when on the move, as he is more productive working in space that trying to sift through trash … Has the range to cover in the short and intermediate area, but will take chances in the open field and is then slow to recover … Lacks natural hands to make interceptions … Better edge rusher than when shooting the gaps, as he is usually absorbed when working inside.

Alston is an undersized strong-side linebacker whose lack of bulk sees him get covered up quickly when working inside the box. In the right system, his speed could be an asset, but because of the physicality of the game at the next level, might be better suited to play the weak side in a Cover-2.

He is effective at attacking the fullback and clogging rush lanes, but does not have the "sand in his pants" to create a pile. He comes out of his stance quickly to attack the ball carrier on the edge and has the loose hips to recover when beaten in attempts to push the ground game back inside. Despite size issues, it is rare to see blockers rock him back on his heels. Bigger offensive linemen are successful in absorbing him, but if he slips off the block, he is apt to take dead aim on the quarterback.

Alston has a lot of Cato June (Colts) in him, as he can drop back and get good depth in pass coverage and has the hip snap to change direction instantly. He is alert to blocking schemes and rarely bites on fakes. He is good at bouncing off blockers when he uses his hands to keep the opponent away from his body.

Alston is a fearless character who gets very physical when it comes to rerouting tight ends and backs in their release. He is best on the chase, as he is very effective using his burst to flatten and close. He times his leaps well to get to the ball at its high point, but does not seem to have the natural hands to make interceptions or pass breakups. His size will prevent him from being an every-down player, but he is a disruptive edge rusher. Put him at weak-side linebacker or take time to have him learn how to play safety ? you can probably then unearth a second day find here.

Career Notes

Established himself as one of the best edge rushers in the country over the last two years. During that time, he accounted for 113 of his 164 career tackles, 16 of his 21 sacks and 23.5 of his 29.5 stops behind the line of scrimmage.

2004 Season

Second-team All-Pac 10 Conference selection … Took over strongside linebacker duties, ranking third on the team with 61 tackles (37 solos) … Was the only player in the Pac-10 Conference to finish among the top six in sacks (fourth with 9.5), fumbles forced (tied for fifth with three) and tackles for loss (sixth with 14.0) … His 9.5 sacks for minus-98 yards rank 12th on the school's single-season list and his 14 stops for losses of 107 yards rank eighth … Caused three fumbles and recovered two others … Also had one interception.

2004 Game Analysis

San Jose State … Began the season with a 7-yard sack and five tackles (4 solos).

Southern California … Stripped the ball from tailback Reggie Bush, causing a fumble, and was in on eight tackles (4 solos).

Washington … Collected six tackles (3 solos) and sacked QB Carl Bonnell for minus-22 yards.

Notre Dame … Recovered a fumble, sacked QB Brady Quinn for a 6-yard loss and was in on a season-high 10 tackles (6 solos).

Washington State … Caused a fumble when he sacked QB Josh Swogger for a 13-yard loss and came up with six hits (3 solos) and a pressure.

Oregon … Delivered seven tackles (5 solos) and a pair of stops behind the line of scrimmage.

Arizona State … Caused and recovered a fumble when he sacked QB Andrew Walter, finishing the day with four sacks of Walter for minus-37 yards … Registered seven hits (5 solos) with five stops behind the line of scrimmage.

Oregon State … Assisted in sacking QB Derek Anderson for a 4-yard loss, intercepted a pass thrown by Anderson and made three assisted tackles.

California … Closed the season with four tackles (3 solos) and a pair of stops behind the line of scrimmage, including a 9-yard sack of QB Aaron Rodgers.

2003 Season

Appeared in 10 games as a reserve outside linebacker … Recorded 21 tackles (12 solos) in 10 games … Registered three sacks for minus-25 yards and four stops for losses of 27 yards … Also caused a fumble.

2003 Game Analysis

Began the year with two tackles and one stop for loss in the season opener vs. San Jose State … Posted two sacks for minus-18 yards in Stanford's win over Brigham Young. One of his sacks came in the final moments of the game when BYU had a first-and-goal on the 8- yard line and was driving for the winning touchdown … At Washington, he recorded a season-high five tackles, including one sack, and caused a fumble … Had four tackles in Stanford's win over UCLA.

2002 Season

Began the season as a reserve outside linebacker, but forced his way into the lineup vs. Washington State, Arizona, UCLA, Oregon and Southern California at weakside linebacker … Recorded 30 tackles (14 solos) with two sacks for losses of 15 yards and a forced fumble.

2002 Game Analysis

Made a season-high seven tackles in Stanford's 16-6 win over Arizona … In his second collegiate game, vs. San Jose State, he registered four tackles, a sack and a forced fumble in a reserve role … His other sack came vs. Arizona.

2001 Season

Redshirted … Spent the season competing on the scout team as an inside linebacker.

Injury Report

School does not provide injury information. Sources state that Alston underwent knee surgery after the 2003 season, but it could not be confirmed.

Agility Tests

Campus: 4.63 in the 40-yard dash.

Combine: 4.50-second 40-yard dash. … 10'04" broad jump. … 40-inch vertical jump. … Bench-pressed 225 pounds 30 times.

High School

Attended Loyola College Prep School (Shreveport, La.) … Regarded as one of the top linebackers in the southern United States … Named to Super Prep's All-Southwest Region team as a senior, adding Class AA All-State, All-City and All-District honors that year … All-District pick at running back and earned Academic All-State honors … Earned All-District and Academic All-District honors after his junior season and was an All-District choice as a sophomore … As a linebacker, Alston registered 134 tackles and 21 stops for losses in his senior season … Played free safety, middle linebacker and tight end as a sophomore and started at running back as a freshman … Member of the National Honor Society and named a 2000 Wendy's High School Heisman Student.

Personal

Public Policy major … Nicknamed "Stone" … Born 6/04/83 … Resides in Shreveport, Louisiana.

 
 

CBSSports.com Shop

Mens Houston Texans JJ Watt Nike Navy Blue Game Jersey

Newest NFL Gear
Get your favorite team today
Shop Now

Fantasy Games
 
 
2016 Super Bowl
Super Bowl