Steelers Have Akron LB Jatavis Brown Scheduled For Pre-Draft Visit

With the month of April now here, the list of players that the Pittsburgh Steelers plan on bringing in for pre-draft visits is really starting to grow. Thursday night, a source told me that Akron linebacker Jatavis Brown has a visit scheduled with the team for April 6th.

According to George M. Thomas of the Akron Beacon Journal, Brown, the 2015 MAC Defensive Player of the Year, had a tremendous showing at his recent pro day that included him running between 4.38 and 4.44 in the 40-yard dash. Additionally, Brown did 33 reps on the bench during that workout. At 5-foot-11, 222-pounds, some wonder if Brown might best fit as a strong safety at the NFL level.

“Honestly, I’d like to see a team create a position for me. Not quite a linebacker, not quite a safety but use me and be creative,” Brown said after participating in the Houston Regional Combine.

However, after saying that, Brown made it clear at a later date that he feels like he’s best suited to play linebacker at the NFL level.

“I believe I’m a linebacker and I will play linebacker in the NFL,” he said, according to Thomas.

Brown was one of the obvious official scouting combine snubs this year, so he probably has a huge chip on his shoulder right now. He certainly isn’t flying under the radar as he reportedly has visits lined up with several other teams.

Despite his great athleticism and college production, many analysts still have Brown being a day-three selection in the 2016 NFL Draft.

  • vasteeler

    This guy is an awesome and underrated prospect, please don’t change him to safety, he has the strength to play linebacker and can mirror backs and TE’s in coverage, he is position flexible and with the right tutelage could easily play at any linebacker spot inside or outside, I challenge anyone to watch highlights or in depth tape of this guy and not come away impressed, Harrison proved long ago that short linebackers can be successful

  • Brian Miller

    what round are you thinking?

  • PittsburghSports

    That’s funny, someone was just on here yesterday asking you about this guy. Interesting prospect. Pro day numbers match well with some of the most athletic DBs in the draft, but his shuttle and 3-cone are Darian Thompson slow.

    Height: 5107
    Weight: 227
    40 Yrd Dash: 4.44
    20 Yrd Dash: 2.60
    10 Yrd Dash: 1.53
    225 Lb. Bench Reps: 33
    Vertical Jump: 35 1/2
    Broad Jump: 10’05”
    20 Yrd Shuttle: 4.31
    3-Cone Drill: 7.19

  • vasteeler

    I’d be surprised if he made it out of the 4th, he actually covered receivers in the slot quite a bit last season, someone will take a flyer on him sooner than expected, I hope it’s the steelers

  • Lil Smitty

    If the Steelers draft him, he will need to prove himself on special teams for a year. He looks big enough and strong enough to take on blockers at the line, but until he actual takes on NFL level blockers it will be a guess if he can. I have a hard time seeing as anything other than a day three pick.

  • Alex Kozora

    Had a GREAT performance at the NFLPA game. Size is just the biggest issue.

  • Joeybaggadonuts

    Not concerned about size so much…he can put on 15-20 lbs within a year, ie Alex Viianueva. He has natural leverage. He moves, dare I say like James Harrison but can he bend and get around the corner like James. Relax, he just has similar body type movements:). IMHO he would be a special teamer while getting bigger and learning the NFL game. Devils advocate question…hewas a D player of the week…why not the MAC Defensive MVP?

  • Sdale

    33 reps is insane for a guy this size.

  • Matt Manzo

    Don’t look now, but there’s a battle brewin at MLB! And it just might be a small school guy!

  • H.K. northern cali

    This guy can help us. I like what somebody said. About putting on 15-20lbs and being a fast lb!

  • Shane Mitchell

    This guy has Steeler written all over him when you watch him play, one of my favorite players in the entire draft, reminiscent of a young James Harrison

    He wants to play OLB but is not opposed to moving to SS, ridiculous he didnt get an invite to the combine because of his size, there is a place in the league for this guy he doesnt play small on the field.

  • Shane Mitchell

    I tried to give him the scoop

  • Rusted Out

    With that speed, someone will take a chance on him by the fourth.

  • Alex Kozora

    Was already well aware of him. Like I said, watched him at the NFLPA Bowl and he put on a show.

  • The Notorious TOM

    Why did he put all those other schools on his helmet at the Collegiate Bowl haha? I see Bowling green, Akron, William and Mary, and LA Tech. What is going on there?

  • Al Webber

    At 5’11” he doesn’t have much scope for adding weight. Or not while maintaining his speed. I’m not sure he’s an every down linebacker in a 3-4 where LBs have to go up against linemen. As a role player he might be good in the 4th if he’s still there.

  • Conserv_58

    James Harrison went undrafted because of his size and he did pretty well for himself. It’s not the size of the dog in the fight, but rather the size of the fight in the dog. Brown is clearly a play maker and playmakers always have a place in the NFL. Aaron Donald was regarded as being too small to play DE/DT in the NFL and he played at a pro bowl level this past season. Brown could make for an impact player at MLB. I can imagine him lined up inside Shazier. With the speed and playmaking ability those two have RB’s and TE’s would have a very difficult time getting downfield.

  • vasteeler

    I agree with you rusted out, that was my thought process too, that someone would covet his speed

  • Steve Johnson

    Day three? I can see that, maybe 5th Rd.

  • Paddy

    That started about 10 years ago. Why on earth I don’t know

  • The Notorious TOM

    Bizarre, especially to have a cross state rival like BG slapped on there next to his alma mater.

  • JNick

    At 5’11 and as strong as he is, I see no legal way for him to just stack 20 lbs in a year. If you’re drafting him you may be hopeful that he can add 10 more, otherwise you’re living with his tweener size and hoping his other traits compensate well enough.

  • thomas hmmmm

    I found the 33 reps of 225 more impressive than his speed… All around this guy has the athletic ability that a team wants in a player… The only real knock being his size.

  • thomas hmmmm

    It’s to rep the smaller school guys.. A one for all, all for one type deal. I believe…

  • Sam Clonch

    Highlights looked awesome, but that’s what highlight videos are supposed to do. Glad he has caught the teams eye though, definitely worth checking out.

  • PittsburghSports

    Ha! Good call, man. Never heard of the dude before yesterday.

  • Shannon Stephenson

    Because of the big question on his size Im sure the Steelers want to really get a good read on him to see if he is NFL quality. He seems to be a exciting guy

  • Ask Questions Later

    …. New Sean Spence pre- catastrophic knee injury anyone?

  • PittsburghSports

    What did he do in the game? I skipped through it very quickly last night, but didn’t really notice much. His speed was evident.

  • RMSteeler

    Yeah, that’s what I see. ST ace and play in the nickel instead of an extra CB. More of a hybrid type that they tried to start with Spence. Would def be an asset in 2 TE looks, I think.

  • PittsburghSports

    Never mind I got to the 4th qtr, which he dominated. He plays LB too well to be switched to Safety.

  • PittsburghSports

    He’s an off the ball LB not an edge rusher, even though he can rush the passer and got 11 sacks last year.

  • Jeff Papiernik

    Why do people say he’s undersized? He’s 222. Shazier is 229. Timmons is 234. This guy puts on 10 pounds which isn’t asking that much, and he’ll be fine.

  • PittsburghSports

    Shazier bulked up to 237 lbs before the draft, and then to 245 lbs before last year.

  • Joeybaggadonuts

    James Harrison…maybe 6′. 260 lbs. If he puts on 20 he may lose a 10th of a second which he can afford to. Let’s be real…most NFL’ers scurt the rules regarding ways to gaining weight and remaining healthy. I would argue that anyone who plays longer than 4 years has some knowledge of chemistry.

  • Joeybaggadonuts

    Not really…he has short arms.

  • Joeybaggadonuts

    Why do you say that. At 5’1111with blazing speed and leverage, he would give tackles fits with proper technique. Think James Harrison.

  • SkoolHouseRoxx

    From what I see he doesn’t go for the Big hit, instead he wraps you up and tackles and won’t stop til he gets you to the ground! Me likes, me likes!

  • PittsburghSports

    I just watched his tape. There’s none of just him on draftbreakdown, but if you search Akron there’s a few from the last 2 years with him in it. He plays Will in a 43 or MLB in their subpackage. Rarely lines up at the LOS, but he does blitz a lot. I watched him in the NFLPA Bowl too.

  • PittsburghSports

    Do you know his arm size? I couldn’t find it. They look long on tape. Not crazy, but 33″ or so, and that’s good for a LB.

  • Joeybaggadonuts

    I thought I saw it in the article or maybe the video. That’s why I made the statement…now I can’t find it. I might be no losing it.

  • Sam Clonch

    Hope not, considering Pitt doesn’t have a 5th rounder this year!

  • Fuamatu-Ma’afala

    Mayock has him as his 5th overall LB in the draft now.