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OLB Khalil Mack – Scouting Report

Blog by / @DFRDaleMason


Khalil Mack Buffalo Highlights ᴴᴰ

Name:  Khalil Mack

School / Player Number:  Buffalo, #46

Position:  OLB

Ht:  6’2 3/4”

Wt:  251lbs

Position Rank:  1

Overall Rank:  5

Daily Football Report Grade – 1st Round

NFL Projected Round – 1st Round

NFL Projection – Impact Player

High School Career  

High School – Fort Pierce Westwood High School, Fort Pierce, FL

Senior Season – Recorded 140 tackles, eight for loss, nine sacks, two fumble recoveries and three forced fumbles.

Accomplishments – Named 3rd – Team All-State and 1st – Team All-Area as a senior.  Led his squad to a district championship.

Rankings – Unranked OLB, two star prospect by Scout; Unranked by 247sports but #89 ranked ILB by 247sports composite and a two star prospect; Unranked ILB by Rivals and a two star prospect; Unranked ILB by ESPN with no star rating.

Notable Scholarship Offers – Buffalo and Liberty.

Comments – Tore patella in high school playing basketball as a sophomore and played only one year of high school football.  Was not well known with only one year of playing under his belt.  Enjoyed a big senior season coming out of the state of Florida.  None of the major recruiting services thought to even rank him at either OLB of ILB.

Collegiate Career

2009 – Redshirted his first season.  Did not see any game action.

2010 – Finished 3rd on the team in tackles with 68 including 14.5 for loss, 4.5 sacks, eight quarterback hurries, two forced fumbles and 10 pass breakups.

2011 – Earned 1st-Team All-MAC honors after totaling 65 tackles, 20.5 for loss, 5.5 sacks, five forced fumbles and 13 quarterback hurries.

2012 – Led Buffalo with 94 tackles, 21 for loss, eight sacks, four quarterback hurries and four forced fumbles.  Named 1st-Team All-MAC for second consecutive season.

2013 – Developed into one of the most dominant defenders in college football highlighted by an outstanding performance versus Ohio State which saw him total nine tackles, 2.5 for loss, 2.5 sacks and one interception which he returned for a touchdown.  Started all 13 games recording 100 total tackles, 19 for loss, 10.5 sacks, 10 pass defenses, six quarterback hurries, five forced fumbles, three fumble recoveries and three interceptions.   Named winner of 2013 College Football Performance Awards Linebacker Trophy.  Also earned 1st-Team All-American and1st-Team All-MAC.  Was also awarded the winner of the Jack Lambert Award, presented annually to college football’s top linebacker.  Mack was also named the 2013 MAC Defensive Player of the Year and a Butkus Award finalist.   Holds NCAA record for forced fumbles andtackles for loss in a career.

NFL Skill Set Scouting Report

Description Analysis
Size/Speed: Excellent size and speed for the position; Lacks ideal height but has long arms which enables him to knock down passes consistently; Plays at about 250-255lbs; Thick build with tremendous playing strength; Ran faster at pro day than combine and plays up to speed.
Athletic Ability: Elite athleticism; Measurables are eye popping; Excellent lower body explosiveness with good agility and movement; Quick twitch type of athlete; Looks the part with long arms, physical strength and athleticism.
Read & React/Instincts: Solid read & react skills with good instincts; Diagnoses fairly quickly and is relentless in pursuit; Will tend to over commit at times; Reacts with urgency; Makes plays sideline-to-sideline.
Playing Strength: Excellent playing strength and has a solid build; Has a strong and explosive lower body and base; Plays with balance and instincts, enabling him to max his playing strength; His athleticism and explosiveness assist him in this area.
Pass Coverage: Three-down linebacker that is comfortable in space; Consistently made plays in coverage throughout his career.
Run Defense/Shed Blocks: Inconsistent in games I evaluated; Can be ridden out of play when blocker gets into his chest; Utilizes arm to keep blockers off but is not consistent in doing so; Can get caught up in trash at times as well; Is not as effective when teams run right at him.
Quickness/Agility: Quick twitch athlete; Very quick and agile for such a large man; Initial quickness off the snap is impressive; Possesses outstanding agility and movement skills.
Tackling: Solid tackler with a history of causing fumbles; Big time hitter that is explosive and relentless in pursuit; Tough, hard-nosed type of player; Wraps up well in space due to long arms and relies a great deal upon athleticism and agility.
Pursuit/Closing Ability: Outstanding in pursuit and has a tremendous burst to the ball carrier; Closes quickly; Is best in pursuit where he can use his athleticism and closing burst; Speed, quickness, explosiveness and long arms make him dangerous in chasing down ball carrier and/or quarterback.
Pass Rush: Tremendous pass rush ability off the edge; Explosive first step; His initial quickness makes him dangerous in this area when utilized; Terrific pass rusher off the edge; Has multiple pass rush moves, will lower and dip his shoulder, able to drop his hips and get under block; Has effective swim move.
Durability: Torn patella in high school; No durability issues in college.


2014 Combine

40 yd dash

Hand Size

Vertical jump

Broad jump


 10 ¼’’



Short Shuttle

Arm Length

Bench press



 33 ¼’’



2014 Pro Day

40 yd dash

10 yard dash

Vertical jump

Broad jump





Short Shuttle

20 yard dash

Bench press







There was a great deal of hype surrounding Mack after his performance versus Ohio State to begin the 2013 season and thus I was very excited to put the tape on and begin his evaluation.  First off, I intended on evaluating four games of his senior season, Ohio State, Baylor, Bowling Green and San Diego State.  His effort against the Buckeyes was impressive as he delivered one of the top defensive performances of the season.  One observation I had from this game is he was going up one-on-one against OSU’s sophomore right tackle, Taylor Decker, in his first start of his career.

I was not nearly as impressed with Mack versus Baylor as he was a complete non-factor and struggled at times versus the run.  After watching the Bowling Green and San Diego State contests I was much more impressed and decided to check out some of his junior tape as well.  After reviewing a total of seven games from 2012 & 2013 I came to this conclusion…..Mack is a tremendous athlete that is dangerous on the football field and must be accounted for by the offense at all times.  His speed, explosiveness, intensity and overall nasty attitude on the gridiron will make any ball carrier think twice before taking him on.  Even on plays he doesn’t make I guarantee you the offense knows where #46 is lined up.   He is a sideline-to-sideline defender and a three-down linebacker, with outstanding pass rush ability.

Mack is physically imposing and definitely looks the part.  His playing strength, long arms and quickness are enticing and he has an innate ability to create big plays.  Mack is able to disrupt plays that that do not show up in the box score.  His ability to hinder the quarterbacks ability to see the field or to force out him out of the pocket is a constant.  Also take note of his ability to force fumbles.  Mack is a playmaker, period.

I expect for Mack to make an immediate impact at the next level and I believe can be utilized in a variety of ways.  Ideally he will be used as a 3-4 outside linebacker and pass rusher.  He has also displayed the ability to put his hand in the dirt as a 4-3 edge rusher.  I also can see him being successful as a 3-4 inside linebacker.  Regardless, Mack is an elite talent and athlete that should be among the top 5-7 players selected on draft day and the best linebacker in this draft.