Auburn linebacker Zakoby McClain‘s draft stock is becoming an issue of who a person asks and what day someone asks about him. Few players ever see draft considerations between a third-round pick to undraftable. That is simply the ambiguity of where draft analysts perceive the current state of McClain.
A large part of Zakoby McClain’s draft stick fluctuations is inconsistency in his play at Auburn, as he delivers both highlight-worthy plays and vanishes for stretches in a game.
The other primary concern for the LA Rams is that he would need to transition from 4-3 outside linebacker to 3-4 inside linebacker, which is doable, but it will likely take more time for him to adjust.
McClain’s greatest strength is as a run defender, so he will be worth a flier for any time that needs run defense from the linebacker position. His strength as a run defender can also give him a role on the LA Rams in particular situations.
In terms of the NFL Scouting Combine itself, Zakoby McClain will have the opportunity to showcase whether or not he has the coverage ability to work as an NFL inside linebacker.
If he can deliver consistent performance during the week and showcase solid skills in the on-field workouts, he could better solidify his draft status.
Given that the LA Rams have little assurance about their biggest need in the NFL Draft until after free agency and any potential retirements, the LA Rams will need to watch for any linebacker with upside, even if they have downsides that lower their stock.
A potential late-round pick with middle-round upside sounds like the perfect type of player for the LA Rams to watch during the NFL Scouting Combine.