2015 NFL Draft Profile: Shaq Thompson, LB Washington


Washington linebacker Shaq Thompson might be one of the most interesting prospects in the draft.  There is a ton of debate as to what his skill set best projects for him when he makes the jump from college football to the professional level.  However, there is no debate when it comes to his heart, love of the game, and aggressive style, which are the three best qualities he brings to an NFL team.

 The concern about his size is a big one.  In fact, some experts project him as a safety instead of a linebacker.  Even then, at least one AFC Scout isn’t sure that he’s a capable safety at the NFL level.  There has even been mention of him as a running back, but Thompson has said that he wants to be a linebacker at the NFL but would be open to playing safety.

Despite these concerns on where to play Shaq Thompson, he will be selected in the top 50 of the NFL Draft based on his athleticism and physical nature.  Don’t let his small size fool you, he can be one of the hardest hitters in the draft and doesn’t fear contact one bit at all.  Some team will take a shot on him and find a spot for him on their defense.

Jan 2, 2015; Tempe, AZ, USA; Washington Huskies linebacker Shaq Thompson (7) against the Oklahoma State Cowboys in the 2015 Cactus Bowl at Sun Devil Stadium. Oklahoma State defeated Washington 30-22. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Combine Measurables:

  • Height: 6’0″
  • Weight: 228 pounds
  • Arm Length: 33″
  • Hand Size: 9.5″
  • 40 Yard Dash: 4.64 seconds
  • Bench Press: N/A
  • Vertical Jump: 33.5″
  • Broad Jump: 117″
  • 3 Cone Drill: 6.99 seconds
  • 20 Yard Shuttle: 4.08 seconds
  • 60 Yard Shuttle: 11.78 seconds

Draft Projection

Shaq Thompson is the #33 overall prospect in the 2015 NFL Draft and is the #3 linebacker available according to CBS Sports.

NFL Player Comparison

Fit For The Vikings

Minnesota will be looking to upgrade or add competition at linebacker positions for the 2015 NFL season.  Or, they could look for him to compete at the safety position opposite Harrison Smith.  It all depends on how the team has evaluated him.

My Take

While I don’t think Shaq Thompson is a good choice at #11 overall, if the Vikings trade back into the draft, he could be a good target.  Or, in classic Rick Spielman style, he could think about using the second round pick to grab Thompson if he slides.  While his size is a question mark, there’s no doubting his athleticism and football IQ.

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