Last time we talked with Austen Lane (DE/OLB, Murray State), he told us, “It’s not where you’ve been, it’s where you’re going.” Well, let’s check where he’s been these last few weeks, and figure out where he is going.
One of Austen’s big selling points is his versatility. Unfortunately, he wasn’t able to showcase that much at the Senior Bowl. “I played strictly at defensive end. No linebacker.” He did confirm that he will get the chance to perform in both the DE and OLB drills at the NFL Combine coming up later this month. While he’s there, Lane plans on excelling at “The forty. Also the broad jump and shuttle run… I don’t like predictions, but I’d like to run in the low 4.6’s.” Austen Lane is currently working out at API in Pensacola, FL with the likes of Terrence Cody, George Selvie, and Jon Jerry.
Even without the ability to show off his OLB skills, Lane did draw the attention of some 3-4 teams, including the New England Patriots. “I met with the Patriots on Wednesday night. It was great, met with a scout. We talked about basic stuff, where I was raised, my background. We went through plays I ran in college, some of the looks. (note: Murray St. ran a base 4-2-5 and a 3-4 on occasion) What I gathered was that the scout was interested in me as an OLB, but also as a DE. They would see where my body takes me.”
Mike Iupati (OG, Idaho), Brandon Graham (DE/OLB, Michigan), and Jared Odrick (DL, Penn State) were the three players that stood out most during his time at the Senior Bowl. “Iupati has great size, and really long arms – huge wing-span… Graham’s pass rush is so sound. He’s not the biggest, but his hands and technique are so good… Odrick is dominating. Really fast off the ball.”
If Austen keeps improving, his feelings on draft day will emulate the feelings after scoring a touchdown in the 2010 Senior Bowl. “I think I did a chest bump. I was just in shock.” However, if Austen’s name is called in the first 50 names of the draft, we won’t be shocked.
Tags: Prospect Interview