The Atlanta Falcons zeroed in on and ultimately selected Minnesota linebacker De'Vondre Campbell in the fourth round of the NFL Draft. He adds depth, youth, and talent to a depleted linebacker corps sorely needing all three.
At 6'4, 235 pounds, Campbell has the body and athleticism to develop into a consistent contributor at the next level. His broad jump was nearly ten feet and his vertical was nearly three feet. He can also run a sub 4.6 40 yard dash. Basically if you were going to become a mad scientist and create a linebacker prototype,
you'd probably be arrested for human trafficking it'd look a lot like Campbell. All those complimentary things said, he's going to need some seasoning, so for now, the coaching staff will just ask him to be malleable. (That's not outlandish given that the Shrine Game coaches apparently raved about how coachable he is and how he developed as that week of practices progressed.)
So how will the Falcons use him in 2016? Again, and I can't emphasize this enough, he's going to need some repetitions and time with the playbook. Campbell might have a high ceiling, but he won't get there immediately. Look for Dan Quinn to play him close to the line of scrimmage this season, blitzing to make good use of his rare combination of size, athleticism, and tenacity. Eventually he could develop into a three down linebacker, contributing in coverage as well. In short, he's going to get playing time right away, but it's definitely possible he won't start in the foreseeable future.