INDIANAPOLIS — Mike Derice, an area scout for the Indianapolis Colts who focuses on the Northeast region, discusses what he saw in defensive tackle Rob Windsor, the Colts' sixth-round (193rd-overall) pick in this year's NFL Draft (excerpts from interviews done with local media members, as well as with Colts.com):
You see the motor, the effort. What does Windsor need to work on at the professional level?
Derice: "I think Robert's going to be a really good pro. Robert has had success at a very high level. He knows how to play with technique with his hands, and obviously you said the motor, and the effort that he plays with, but he really is a student of the game, and it's undeniable how hard he plays, and he really loves the game. I don't know if there's much for him to really work on, just continue to refine the tools that he has and to continue to play with that type of effort and he'll be an excellent wave player for us. He has enough in his body as an athlete and his size to be a really good football player on the interior of the D-line for us."
Windsor said he was playing nose tackle and then he moved to the three-tech his final year at Penn State. What do you see as his specific position fit with the Colts?
Derice: "So at Penn State, he was a three technique the majority of his junior year. This season, he played more one technique. For us, he can do either/or. We probably initially see him as a one technique, but he has the flexibility to play both inside positions. He has get-off, he has speed off the ball, and he knows how to win early on the down to be disruptive in a vertical pass rush game or vertical disruption type of guy, and his effort will get them to close onto the quarterback."
You mentioned Windsor being a wave defender up front. Do you expect him to be more of a pass-rush guy on third down, or more stuffing the run on early downs?
Derice: "He can stuff the run. The qualities that make Rob special is that he's able to win with the quickness off the ball and his hands, so he'll be able to disrupt, stop the feet of the running back in the running game, because he's going to be in the backfield before the guard gets a chance to really grab onto him. That's the one thing I thought he did special. You watch the Iowa game, you watch the Ohio State game, the Michigan game, you see that he beat NFL-level guards and centers off the snap and was forcing the running back to run the banana or to stop their feet, and that's what he can do at our level."
Do you think Windsor needs to add weight to play the one-technique?
Derice: "He doesn't need to gain the way to play one technique in our style of defense where we're trying to get some vertical disruption. He's okay at 290. We've played with guys at the one technique at that weight before. He doesn't need to gain the weight. The key for him is how to beat the guard in center before they get to the block point, and he can do that with the quickness off the ball."
Windsor said his weight fluctuated when he was at Penn State. How much do you guys take stock into that when a guy up front doesn't stay at a consistent weight?
Derice: "So the times in which he was 315 were the first two years of his career. The last two seasons at Penn State, he was in a 290, 285 range, so I think he's comfortable at that weight. I don't think we're going to ask him to get to 315. I don't think that's what we're going to ask him to do. I think that we're going to just have him use his traits of the get off, the effort, the quick hands, to beat the blocks, to disrupt the field vertically — the game vertically."