CLEVELAND

Rookie Review: LB Mack Wilson

AP Photo/Ron Schwane

Hey, Browns fans. As I consider Cleveland’s rookie players, one thing is becoming clear to me; I need John Dorsey to be my shopping buddy. No offense to my current shopping buddy, but Dorsey has a knack for finding awesome bargains.

Just like last week’s rookie, Greedy Williams, this week’s featured rookie, Alabama’s Mack Wilson, makes my point for me. I covered Wilson in a pre-draft feature and noted that “Behind the Devins (LSU’s Devin White & TTUN’s Devin Bush) Wilson is considered to be one of the top inside linebackers of this year’s draft class.” Some analysts felt he was the top inside linebacker. The overwhelming feeling was Wilson was a lock as a second-round pick and definitely a top 100 pick.

Until he wasn’t.

There were murmurs about Wilson’s sub-par sack total bringing him down a notch. Of course, the 44-16 shellacking of Alabama by Clemson for the NCAA National Championship may have raised a few eyebrows, but that was an entire team failure. Even in a game where players live and die by intangibles, I find it hard to believe that Wilson’s grandstanding on social media had a significant impact on his draft stock.

Wilson entered Alabama’s linebacker factory as a five-star recruit from George Washington Carver High School in Montgomery. He played in all 15 games as a true freshman for the Crimson Tide and started 17 games through his sophomore and junior seasons. Wilson’s time playing for Nick Saban proved productive. He recorded 113 total tackles (59 solo, 7 for loss) 6 interceptions (1 pick six) and a single sack.

Whatever caused Wilson’s fall to the fifth round 155th pick, it no longer matters. Wilson comes to us in Cleveland with something to prove to the other teams who passed him by for four rounds. To quote Wilson, “That chip is always going to be on my shoulder. I’m always going to think about it.”

I say welcome to Mack Wilson and the chip on his shoulder. Get ready Cleveland, this dawg is set to howl.

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