The Baltimore Ravens drafted Ohio State University OLB/DE John Simon in the 4th round of the 2013 NFL Draft. Not too many Ravens knew much about him, so we asked one of the writers at SB Nation's OSU blog to give his own insight on what we were getting:
Ted Glover here from Land-Grant Holy Land, SB Nation's Ohio State blog.
John Simon is a guy that will always be one of my favorite OSU players. He's a no-nonsense, blue collar player that gives you 110% on every play, healthy, hurt, or otherwise. His numbers from his senior season were down a bit because of a shoulder problem that bothered him a good part of the year, but he was still a guy that needed to be accounted for on every play.
In college, was a a rush end from the right side, but in Baltimore I assume he will transition to an OLB in your 3-4 scheme (if I'm wrong on that, please feel free to delete or correct). He's strong and can handle himself in the trenches, but he's not the biggest guy and generally won't beat you with brute force. Instead, he has a tremendous 'get off' step, and will use a combination of technique and speed to beat your best offensive lineman off the edge and wreak havoc. However, if Simon doesn't get separation with his first move, a good offensive lineman can re-direct him out of a play. Which makes me think he's perfect as an OLB in a 3-4. His speed and not having to take on a tackle at the line of scrimmage plays to his greatest strength while simultaneously negating his biggest weakness, at least to a large extent.
But what endears Simon to Buckeye nation are his intangibles. He became the heart and soul of the 2012 undefeated team, and was the emotional leader that willed the Buckeyes to a 12-0 record, when they were probably a 9 win team, tops. He played hurt, lead by example, and gave so much to his team that Urban Meyer famously asked himself in a post game press conference if he and his staff was doing as much as John Simon was to help the team win:
Anyway, that's John Simon. You guys got a great one, and I hope he turns in a Hall of Fame career for you.