We’re on somewhat of a defensive end roll as this is the third straight day the SideLion Report prospect profile takes a look at that position. The previous two days highlighted Cameron Jordan and Aldon Smith, two guys that could be options with the 13th pick. Today we look at Pittsburgh defensive end Greg Romeus, a guy that the Lions could consider as a mid-round draft pick if they don’t add a defensive end earlier in the draft.
Greg Romeus, DE, Pitt
Weight: 264 lbs.
Arm Length: 35 in.
Hand Size: 10 7/8 in.
40-yard dash: 4.79 sec
Romeus missed nearly his entire senior year dealing with back and knee injuries, but he has excellent size and the athleticism to contribute at the next level. He is a powerful rusher with good speed that will be even more effective once he adds more counter moves to his repertoire. He is very strong and difficult to move in the running game and shows the agility to make tackles from the backside. He lacks the fluidity to make plays in space, but he has a very high ceiling and should be a middle round pick in spite of his injury concerns.
Missing most of the season due to injury is the biggest concern when it comes to drafting Greg Romeus. The Lions had him in for a visit on March 17, undoubtedly to evaluate him from a medical perspective. If the medical issues check out then Romeus has all the physical tools necessary to have a productive NFL career. The National Football Post provides this final impression in their Romeus scouting report:
A really long, impressive athlete with powerful hands and good closing speed on the football. Tore an ACL and suffered through back injuries as a senior and now has significant medical concerns which will keep him from getting draft high.
The injuries might sound like a really big deal but that didn’t keep the NFP from giving Romeus a grade of 6.1, which is described as the following:
A clean prospect who will need time and development in order to contribute…physically, this player has all the tools to be a starter in the NFL but has not yet developed the necessary skills due to level of competition, offensive or defensive schemes, injury, grades or lack of playing time…true developmental player who has the potential to become a starter.
That sounds pretty good to me if the Lions can pick him up in the fourth round. The medical issues may be only one reason that Romeus isn’t projected as high among the defensive end prospects. I noted the versatility of Cameron Jordan and Aldon Smith in their profiles. Romeus doesn’t have the same type of game film that shows off his abilities on the interior of the line. ESPN grades his him as just average in the versatility category and offers this explanation:
Has some experience dropping into coverage. Moves fairly well for his size but has some tightness in hips giving him limitations in space. Can be relied on to spot-drop off of a zone blitz package but not someone you want consistently put in this situation. Did not see him reduced inside to DT position during film study.
It is important to remember that while more negatives show up in his scouting report compared to the top prospects, Romeus may still provide great value based on where he is drafted. Everything is relative to the prospects’ draft position. Even so, the Lions may be forced into some tough mid-round decisions. Assuming they are satisfied with Romeus physically, they may be content to stick with Willie Young as their developmental defensive end now that they have been able to work with him for a year. Adding a top defensive end is one thing, adding a potential fourth rounder like Romeus is another.
What do you say Lions fans?