Mark Anderson DE 6'4 254 Alabama
By: Robert Davis
Mark Anderson was a big part of Alabama's return to dominance this past season. The Bama defense was awesome all year, and his playmaking off the edge was a big reason for it. Anderson began to show his potential as a sophomore when he notched a career high 48 tackles, 11 for loss, and 2.5 sacks. His numbers were very similar as a junior, finishing the season with 41/11/2.5. His emergence as a true playmaker this season though helped vault Bama back to the top. He had 40 tackles, with career highs of 18 for loss and 7.5 sacks.
Anderson brings big time pass rush potential to the defensive end position. He is a very good athlete, is agile, and shows the speed to close and make plays. He gets off the line quick, and once he has that step, you can't stop him. Anderson also shows the ability to hold his ground at the point of attack, something most edge rushers lack. Anderson has a ton of experience at a high level, so he should be ready to provide an impact soon in the league.
Even though the tweener label is not as big of a negative as it once was, it is still a concern. Anderson will need to bulk up to remain at DE. Even though he can use his hands to get off blocks, he will need to add more bulk to do it consistently in the NFL. If asked to move back to OLB in a 3-4 scheme, he'll have to show the ability to play in space and run down plays.
With his solid senior season, and a good showing at the combine, Anderson is on the rise. Teams are always looking for pass rushers, and after posting a 4.62 40 and a 42" vertical jump at the combine, teams feel he has a lot of upside. Anderson has a chance to hear his name called in the second round, but will not last long into the third if he falls there.
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