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Su'a Cravens | Linebacker

Team: USC Trojans
Age / DOB:  (22) / 7/7/1995
Ht / Wt:  6'1" / 220

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Redskins selected USC LB Su'a Cravens with the No. 53 overall pick in the 2016 draft.
Cravens (6'1/226) played a hybrid safety-linebacker role in USC's defense, logging 33.5 tackles for loss, 10.5 sacks and nine interceptions as a three-year starter. He showed linebacker-level athleticism in pre-draft workouts, running 4.69 with a 30 1/2-inch vertical. Cravens compared himself to Deone Bucannon in Combine interviews, but isn't as good of an athlete. In the NFL, he'll serve as a strong safety-slash-dime linebacker in DC Joe Barry's defense. Fri, Apr 29, 2016 09:00:00 PM

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The National Football Post's Aaron Wilson relays that USC LB/S Su'a Cravens is under consideration as a possible first-rounder.

Among the teams that Wilson tabbed as potential interested parties for Cravens' services, the New England Patriots, Falcons, Carolina Panthers, Buffalo Bills, Indianapolis Colts and San Diego Chargers. TFY Draft Insider's Tony Pauline likewise sees the 6-foot-1, 220-pounder as a first-rounder, believing that he will either be selected by a team near the end of the first round, or potentially, could be selected by a team trading back into first.
Mon, Apr 25, 2016 09:31:00 PM

TFY Draft Insider's Tony Pauline reports that it's 50-50 at this point what position USC LB/S Su'a Cravens will play in the NFL.

This is interesting, because we'd seen, with regards to that question, the tide turn from linebacker to safety in recent weeks. "Most of the insiders I speak with feel Cravens compares favorably to Deone Bucannon of the Arizona Cardinals and believe the USC junior is best suited for the same 'moneybacker' position Bucannon plays," Pauline wrote. $LB -- as it's actually cited in the depth chart -- is basically a hybrid safety/linebacker position focusing on the run that Cravens would be perfect for. "Cravens is likely to end up in the late part of round one as a team in the 20s could select him or another franchise may trade up from the early part of round two to acquire his services," Pauline wrote.
Mon, Apr 11, 2016 07:44:00 PM

USC LB/S Su'a Cravens is receiving "a lot of Deone Bucannon comparisons," reports TFY Draft Insider's Tony Pauline.

We've also heard this one throughout the process. Not only does Cravens want to play safety in the NFL, but it appears that the NFL is beginning to look at him as just that. Cravens will visit the Falcons and Lions this week. Both of those teams need safety help.
Mon, Apr 11, 2016 03:26:00 PM

TFY Draft Insider's Tony Pauline hears that the Ravens have strong interest in USC LB/S Su'a Cravens.

"I was told last week the [Ravens] love Su’a Cravens," Pauline wrote, "hence he could be the target if they trade down [from the No. 6 pick]." The analyst was hearing much scuttlebutt of a potential move-back by the Ravens during the NFL Scouting Combine. He has also heard that the Panthers have "scary interest" in the 6-foot-1, 220-pounder. While he could play either safety or linebacker at the next level, Cravens indicated in mid-March that most teams are viewing him as a safety. That works well enough -- he told NBC Sports' Mike Florio that he wants to play safety in the NFL.
Sun, Apr 10, 2016 02:43:00 PM

USC LB Su'a Cravens will visit the Falcons and Lions after his trip to the Saints concludes.

Cravens declined any private workouts during the process, citing too much interest. Therefore, teams will need Cravens in for an official visit for any kind of pre-draft meeting outside of what has already happened at the NFL Combine and USC's pro day. Cravens has made it clear he prefers playing safety, however his athletic testing for the position is well below average and he filled a linebacker role last season.
Tue, Apr 5, 2016 09:12:00 AM

NFL Media draft analyst Lance Zierlein noted that USC LB/S Su'a Cravens is "a fearless playmaker who is always into something."

While Zierlein doesn't include Cravens outright in his "defensive steals" rundown, he wrote that should the USC standout fall to the third round or later due to his Pro Day testing, he would make that cut. "The team that takes Cravens will know it stole one by the time OTAs are over," he concluded. One of the reasons the analyst suspects a possible slide is that the 6-foot-1, 220-pounder's Pro Day test results simply weren't overwhelming. At Pro Day, he ran the 40-yard dash in 4.69 seconds, notched a vertical jump of 30 1/2 inches and worked a three-cone drill time of 6.92 seconds. ESPN's David Bowen is reporting that scouting evaluations regarding the tweener safety/linebacker are "all over the board."
Sat, Apr 2, 2016 03:13:00 PM

ESPN's David Bowen reports that NFL scouts are "all over the board" on USC LB/S Su'a Cravens.

Some scouts give Cravens a hard pass because of his tweener profile. Others see a difference maker at 4-3 Will LB because Cravens can excel in space in today's NFL. Others see Cravens as a new age safety capable of moving into the box on running downs. "The key with a guy like Cravens: The game plan needs to cater to his versatility," Bowen wrote. "Move him around the front to blitz in the interior gaps, let him fly off the edge or have him match a tight end. Remember, he's not a fit for every team in the league. And that will impact his overall draft stock."
Fri, Apr 1, 2016 04:16:00 PM

USC defender Su'a Cravens told Mike Florio he wants to play S in the NFL.

Cravens admitted it doesn't matter where he wants to play, that it is up to the team who drafts him to determine that. Speaking of teams, Cravens mentioned he is visiting the Saints, Lions and Raiders, and likely the Dolphins and Bills too. We are a bit surprised that Cravens hopes to play safety, as he played linebacker last year, and one close to the line of scrimmage at that. He tested like a below average athlete at linebacker, so his safety numbers are even worse. However, to his credit, Cravens maximizes the tools he has and plays with an aggressive mentality. He ranks as Josh Norris' No. 51 prospect.
Source: NBC Sports
Wed, Mar 30, 2016 12:05:00 PM

USC LB/S Su'a Cravens' agent Fadde Mikhail said the defender is turning down private workout requests due to "too many teams" calling.

"And I think Su’a’s body of work on film speaks for itself," Mikhail told PFT's Mike Florio. It is an interesting strategy, especially for a prospect who is "stuck" between two positions, and his projection is team dependent. However, as Mikhail notes, Cravens has three years of tape and participated at the NFL Combine and USC's pro day. On the field, Cravens says more teams view him as a safety, which shocks us. He played a linebacker role last year and does not have the athleticism to play a true safety position.
Wed, Mar 30, 2016 09:27:00 AM

Pro Football Focus compared USC LB/S Su'a Cravens to Thomas Davis.

"The team that drafts Cravens will likely be hoping that his best-case scenario is becoming the new Thomas Davis," PFF's analysis team noted, "a safety convert with the skills to play weakside linebacker and showcase his playmaking ability in that regard." Tying in beautifully with this comparison, TFY Draft Insider's Tony Pauline reported late last week that the Panthers have "scary interest" in the 6-foot-1, 220-pound Trojan, presumably because they are looking to groom a successor to Davis. One slight hitch to that suspicion -- Cravens himself has said that teams are viewing him more as a safety than a linebacker (Davis plays the latter), a notion that Pauline backed in his rundown of USC's Pro Day on Wednesday.
Mon, Mar 28, 2016 07:03:00 PM

Draft insider Tony Pauline has heard "there is scary interest from the Carolina Panthers" and USC LB/S Su'a Cravens.

The Panthers showed interest in and ended up drafting Shaq Thompson last year, another prospect who was deemed a hybrid linebacker/safety. Thompson played more of a traditional linebacker role for Carolina and looks to be the heir apparent to Thomas Davis, but did walk out and press slot receivers at times. Cravens is not the athlete Thompson is and told reporters more teams view him as a safety than as a linebacker.
Fri, Mar 25, 2016 11:31:00 AM

USC LB/S Su'a Cravens ran the 40-yard dash in 4.61 seconds during Wednesday's Pro Day.

Cravens notched an official time of 4.61 seconds, though (per TFY Draft Insider's Tony Pauline) some clubs actually had him lower than that at 4.55 seconds. The 6-foot-1, 220-pounder went through drills as both a linebacker and a safety, with one onlooker telling Pauline that he looked "fantastic" and "caught everything but a cold." The analyst notes that most teams at this point are viewing him as a safety than a linebacker. Cravens himself echoed that assertion earlier on Thursday.
Thu, Mar 24, 2016 01:22:00 PM

USC defender Su'a Cravens told reporters more teams view him as a S rather than a LB.

Cravens only went through the jumps at the NFL Combine, but those results were terrible for a 226-pound prospect. Cravens did run the forty in 4.65 seconds, but at this point we can conclude he is not a good athlete and that was after dropping six-pounds. Cravens played both spots during his career at USC, gaining and losing weight accordingly. We think, despite that lack of traditional size, he held up well on the edge by maximizing his length and positioning. His NFL role will be team dependent.
Source: LA Times
Thu, Mar 24, 2016 08:41:00 AM

NFL Media's Lance Zierlein says USC LB/S Su'a Cravens has been sliding down boards since the draft process began due to "lackluster combine results combined with concerns about his position fit."

The NFL still can't decide is Cravens is a safety or a linebacker. We've said all along that Cravens is a linebacker. His Combine testing numbers only solidified that stance. "I love the guy on tape, but he has to play near the line of scrimmage to have the impact that I'm projecting and at just under 6-1 and 226 pounds, I don't know how feasible that is," Zierlein wrote. "UCLA center Jake Brendel topped Cravens' vertical leap by an inch (28 to 27). Cravens didn't run, but his lack of size, explosiveness and questions surrounding a scheme fit forced me to drop his grade despite my love of the tape."
Thu, Mar 10, 2016 01:29:00 PM