NFL Draft’s Potential Patriots: Illinois DE/LB Michael Buchanan
|04.13.13 at 7:12 am ET|
WEEI.com will continue to offer daily insight and analysis regarding options that might be available to the Patriots when it comes to the 2013 NFL draft. Here is one is a series of profiles of players who could be on the board when it’s time for the Patriots to make a selection.
Position: Defensive end/linebacker
Weight: 255 pounds
Achievements: 2012, 2011 All-Big Ten second team
What he brings: Buchanan has good height and length for his position. He has an excellent first step and covers a lot of ground. He is good at swatting offensive tackles’ hands off his body to get separation. He also is effective at linebacker, locking up tight ends off the line, and shows hip fluidity and agility to play in coverage.
“I see myself as being able to do a lot of different things,” Buchanan told the Chicago Sun-Times. “Yes, I was asked to play defensive end here. I think I can do that at the next level — put on some more weight and improve my run defense. [But] I also think I can play outside linebacker. I think I’m very versatile. I can do anything a team asks me to do.”
Where the Patriots could get him: Round 3 or later
Notes: In 46 career games (32 starts), Buchanan recorded 161 tackles, 26 tackles for losses, and 14 sacks. In his 2011 junior season, he had 64 tackles and 7.5 sacks as Illinois went 7-6. His senior season was a disappointment, as his production dipped to 57 tackles and 4.5 sacks for a 2-10 Illini team. … In the summer between his junior and senior seasons, Buchanan was involved in an altercation that left him with a broken jaw that was wired shut for a week. He was restricted to an all-liquid diet, which caused him to lose 20 pounds before the season started.
Related articles: Chicago Tribune: Michael Buchanan hopes to live up to Illini standard
Video: Here’s a look at Buchanan in action vs. Penn State in 2012.