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Beyond the Draft: Meet Vince Redd (LB)

Vince Redd is a hard man to get a handle on.   

His size (6'6", 260 lbs) definitely matters.  A large defender with very long arms, "Bigg Redd" makes it difficult for blockers to grab him and hold on .  His excellent timed speed, cat-like quickness and good reaction movements are talked up in his NFL draft report, while SI Grade touts his size, athleticism and speed off the edge"Redd stepped his game up last season and showed the ability to dominate the action.  He offers outstanding upside for the next level."

The high points show Redd finishing strong at Liberty, starting 10 games, and registering 67 tackles with a league-high 6.5 sacks.  He's been timed a 4.56 in the 40 and brings a highly respectable 39" vertical to the field.

The Patriots refer to him as "one of the more intriguing undrafted rookie free agent prospects" and their assessment is understandable considering his "somewhat tumultuous college career."

Redd began his college career playing for Al Groh at Virginia.  But he was suspended for one game for violating team policy in 2005 and was then reportedly dismissed from the squad along with fellow Cavaliers defender Ahmad Brooks for another violation of team policy in March of 2006.  Redd transferred to Liberty where after sitting out 2006 he had a very productive 2007 campaign playing for former Groh assistant Danny Rocco's Flames.

The defense Redd played at both UVA and Liberty has many similarities to what he'll be asked to do in New England.  He's aware that he likely earned a free agent look with the Patriots thanks to his connection to Bill Belichick via Groh and Rocco and is hoping to make the best of the opportunity.

"Them knowing each other, they can speak to each other and see how I play and my character and stuff like that and how I actually work," Redd said before acknowledging that his familiarity with the scheme should help him in the early going.  "It's good for me, but I still have to come in here and make my own spot on the team."

By all accounts Redd needs to work on his alarming lack of strength and power for a player his size, which the rookie himself admitted to in an interview with Eric Rose in January.  Rose was very impressed with him and his future in the NFL .

When talking to Vince I noticed how poised and respectful he is.  He loves the game of football and is willing to do anything to play at the next level.  Don't be surprised if Vince Redd becomes a household name in a few years.  He's got the size and potential, and once he works on his speed, strength and overall knowledge of the game, like all rookies must do, I'm expecting Redd to be very successful in the NFL.

"There is nowhere to go but up , that's the way I see it," Redd said while admitting that he must work on the "total package" that is the tough job of playing outside linebacker in New England's 3-4 scheme." 

Let's watch him rise.