Over the coming months, HoustonTexans.com will be doing weekly draft profiles, as we examine the top rated players in the upcoming NFL Draft.
Today we focus on UCLA linebacker Anthony Barr.
Name: Anthony Barr
Hometown: San Pedro, California
Stats (Defensive Stats Only)
|Season||Tackles||Tackles for Loss||Sacks||Pass Breakups||QB Hits||Forced Fumbles||Fumble Recoveries|
Awards2013• Lott Impact Award
• Walter Camp All-American
• First Team All-Pac 12
• AFCA All-American
• AP All-American
• Lombardi Award finalist
• AP second-team All-American
• First team All-Pac 12
• Collegefootballnews.com's Pac 12 Defensive Player of the Year
• CBS Sports All-American team
• Team Defensive MVP
Scouts, Inc.: 6th
CBS Sports: 11th
Mel Kiper's 'Big Board': 2nd
ESPN.com/Todd McShay: 3rd
UCLA's Anthony Barr is one of the more intriguing prospects in this year's NFL draft, due to both his pedigree and route to stardom.
The son of former NFL player Tony Brooks, Barr also has three uncles that have played professionally. The talented linebacker didn't start his UCLA career on the defensive end however, and his quick transition to dominance now has him ranked as one of the top NFL prospects in the country.
As a high school senior, Barr was a highly prized recruit, but on the other side of the ball. Barr starred at running back for Loyola High School in Los Angeles, and was ranked as the top athlete in the country according to Tom Lemming and MaxPreps. Barr committed to UCLA in part because they agreed to let him play running back at the college level. Several other top programs wanted Barr to transition to defense upon enrolling in college.
After two mostly disappointing years on offense, UCLA head coach Jim Mora urged Barr to switch to linebacker, and the rest is history. Barr went on to have two great seasons for the Bruins defense, compiling 23 sacks and 41 tackles for loss during that time. His was tabbed an All-American by several publications, and won the prestigious Lott Impact Award as a senior. Barr's versatility is one of his strong points, as his skill set appears to fit in all possible NFL schemes. His size (6-4, 250) and speed (4.5 according to ESPN) project well at the next level.
Barr's prospect ranking fluctuates, with his highest ranking coming via Mel Kiper's 'Big Board', where he is second overall.