Jerome Baker, OLB, Ohio State
Draft Prospect Outlook:
Speed-predicated linebacker who's undersized and almost looks like a safety on the field. Gets engulfed by offensive linemen more than you'd like, but flashed the ability to swipe smaller blockers away. Despite his plus athleticism, he doesn't play to his timed 4.53 speed. Not a quick-reactionary player. Good, not great in coverage. Best as WLB.
A four-star recruit out of Cleveland, Baker originally committed to Florida before flipping to Ohio State. He played mainly special teams as a true freshman in 2015. Then Baker enjoyed his breakout season as a sophomore in 2016. He took over for the injured Dante Booker at outside linebacker following the first game of the year, and finished the campaign with 83 tackles (45 solo), 9.5 tackles-for-loss, 3.5 sacks, and two interceptions -- one that he returned for a touchdown.
As a junior in 2017, Baker had a very similar season. He repeated as an honorable mention All-Big Ten selection, and once again had 3.5 sacks. He declared for the draft two days after the Buckeyes' win over USC in the Goodyear Cotton Bowl. -- Dave Biddle