3 Linebackers the Cleveland Browns should draft in Round 1
Zaven Collins – Linebacker, Tulsa
The 6-foot-5, 259-pound linebacker out of Tulsa is one of the most interesting prospects in 2021. While he has the size of a defensive end, he has the athleticism of a linebacker. While his best fit may be in the interior of a 3-4 defense, there is no reason at all he wouldn’t fit just fine with Joe Woods.
Zaven Collins is a three-year starter who was consistent every single snap of his career. Collins has a freak frame for a linebacker and still has the athleticism to run in coverage. He has strong awareness and quick eyes which also make him an effective defender in zone coverage.
One thing Collins will have to continue to work on is using his size to his advantage. At times he plays high and can be moved in holes by offensive linemen. While Collins does have the straight-line speed, his size does at times impair his ability to change direction quickly. At times this can get him in trouble on play-action and misdirection plays.
Some have fears that Collins didn’t play at the highest level in college, but from what I can see his game translates well to the next level. If the Browns go with Collins at No. 26, Walker and Jacob Phillips would be the primary linebackers with Collins on the field in three linebacker sets.