Skip to main content

Draft Coverage

Meet the Prospect: Jack Campbell

Name: Jack Campbell

Position: Linebacker

School: Iowa

Ht/Wt: 6-5, 249

40-yard dash: 4.65

Bench: Did not bench

Vertical: 37.5 inches

Broad: 10-feet-8-inches

3-cone: 6.74 seconds

20-yard shuttle: 4.24 seconds

View photos of NFL prospect Jack Campbell.

How he fits: The Detroit Lions re-signed veteran captain and MIKE linebacker Alex Anzalone to a new three-year contract in free agency, and they also like the development of young linebackers Malcolm Rodriguez and Derrick Barnes, but defensive coordinator Aaron Glenn said at the Combine they'll be looking to add talent and depth across the board at every position on defense to improve competition.

Campbell is a heck of an athlete. He could have played Division 1 basketball had he chose that path. He ranked No. 1 among all linebackers at the Combine with an 89 NextGen athleticism score. He was the Dick Butkus Award winner as the nation's top linebacker this past season and was also named the Big Ten Conference Defensive Player of the Year after his second consecutive 100-tackle season (128). He had 143 tackles as a junior.

Campbell is a big, long, strong and smart linebacker with a nose for the football. He's also pretty good in space with 10 passes defended and five interceptions the last three years. His 1.59-second 10-yard split at the Combine showed he's got great burst.

Key observations: Campbell is Pro Football Focus' fourth highest graded linebacker to enter the draft since 2016. Only Reuben Foster, Roquan Smith, and Nakobe Dean were graded higher.

Only seven inside linebackers ever completed a faster three-cone drill than Campbell's 6.74 seconds, and only one of those linebackers was heavier, per The Athletic. Campbell finished first among linebackers at the Combine in the three-cone and the 20-yard shuttle and was second in the broad jump and vertical leap.

What they had to say about him: "Linebacker, got to give credit to Jack Campbell, he's a great player," Minnesota center John Michael Schmitz said at the Combine when asked who were the top players he faced in college. "His length, his size, he was one of the bigger linebackers. And just how fast he was to get to the ball. Another thing, how physical he was."

Go behind the scenes with the Detroit Lions during 2023 free agency.

How he stacks up: Most draft analysts thought Campbell would be a second-round pick ahead of the Combine but after his performance in Indy there's been some talk about him sneaking into the second half of the first round. analyst Bucky Brooks lists Campbell as the No. 3 linebacker available in this draft behind Arkansas' Drew Sanders and Trenton Simpson of Clemson. NFL draft analyst Daniel Jeremiah lists Campbell as the second best linebacker in the class behind Simpson and his No. 50 overall prospect.

Dane Brugler of The Athletic puts Campbell as the fourth best linebacker in the class and his No. 73 overall player. ESPN's Mel Kiper Jr., Todd McShay, Jordan Reid and Matt Miller all list Campbell as the third best inside linebacker prospect in the draft behind Simpson and Sanders.

What he had to say: "I feel like non-negotiables at linebacker are your eyes and your feet," Campbell said at the Combine. "It starts right there. It's simple stuff. A lot of people kind of overlook it and take it to a new level, that I don't think you need to take it to. I think you have to stay true to yourself and your fundamentals and then the mental aspect.

"The mental aspect at linebacker is the most important part to be able to perform at the highest level. I feel like coming from the University of Iowa, coming from a program led by Kirk Ferentz and the way we approach things. I feel like I've already come from a pro-level system and how we operate there as an organization. I think that's going to help me translate my game to the next level."

Related Content