INDIANAPOLIS–As inside linebackers go, Benardrick McKinney (left) and Denzel Perryman (below) are the long and short of the position.
McKinney and Perryman are two of the top prospects at inside linebacker in this year’s draft. The Packers, of course, are thought to be in the market for an inside linebacker.
“Yeah, I have an advantage of my height and making the quarterback make difficult throws
over the top of me, so I definitely have an advantage,” McKinney told reporters at the scouting combine. McKinney is 6-5, 245.
“I’ve been pretty much getting knocked for my height since I got to high school, getting recruited,” Perryman said. “My play makes up for my height. I don’t play like I’m 5-11.”
The Packers released veteran inside linebacker Brad Jones on Friday, a move that would seem to invite a draft pick at the position. Height aside, McKinney and Perryman have similar traits: They’re tough and productive.
“First of all, you have to be tough. You’ve got to be a vocal leader because you have to set the fronts, get everybody lined up. You’ve got to be smart, you’ve got to know the game, you’ve got to know your opponent, you’ve got to figure out formations, figure out what the offense is going to do to you. You’ve got to be smart and you’ve got to be really tough,” McKinney said.
He wants to be the first inside linebacker selected.
“It’s very, very important. I have high expectations for myself. It’s been a dream since I was young to be the best at what I do, to be the best linebacker in the country,” he said.
“Just look at the tape. Say my name and you’re going to get a physical, hard-nosed downhill dog,” Perryman said.
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