Oren Burks, LB, Vanderbilt
Draft Prospect Outlook:
Chiseled, explosive linebacker who'll make his presence felt in the run game, and has plenty of speed to get to the outside. Has problems unlatching from blocks and isn't as reliable of a tackler as you'd like from your middle linebacker.
A 247Sports Composite three-star recruit out of Lorton, Virginia, Burks started his career as a safety, making seven starts as a redshirt freshman and totaling 37 tackles and seven passes defensed while returning a fumble for a touchdown. He started every game as a sophomore, recording 52 total tackles (two for loss) with five passes defensed and three interceptions, returning one of his two picks against Kentucky for a TD. Burks moved to a linebacker/safety hybrid position as a junior and also made a start at inside linebacker, and he tallied 59 total tackles (6.5 for loss) with 3.5 sacks and an interception he returned for 59 yards.
Burks was shifted to purely an inside linebacker as a senior, where he totaled a career-high 80 tackles (seven for loss) with one sack and one interception. His totals included a 15-tackle explosion against Florida and a 12-tackle performance against Kentucky in which he had a sack and a fumble recovery. -- R.J. White