Ja’Von Rolland-Jones - Defensive End - Arkansas State
Height - 6’2”
Weight - 244 lbs
Bench Press - 23 Reps
40 Yard Dash - 4.88 Seconds
Vertical Jump - N/A
Broad Jump - N/A
Coming out of high school the Mesquite, Texas, native garnered little attention from schools despite an all-state honorable mention. Arkansas State came calling giving the defensive end a chance at the FBS level and all Rolland-Jones did was become one of the most prolific pass rushers in Sun Belt history, causing chaos for four stat-laden years and becoming the undisputed anchor for a Red Wolves defense that kept them at the top of the Sun Belt.
Again, despite eye-popping stats it seems NFL scouts are underestimating JRJ’s abilities. That’s a natural reaction and given his smaller than average stature, a questionable lack of an invite to the Senior Bowl and an incomplete combine performance is enough to take all these subjects into consideration.
But solid players can adapt to the rigors of the pro ranks and JRJ has the skills and abilities to grow into a solid career in the NFL.
At Arkansas State Rolland-Jones set the record books on fire leaving Jonesboro as the Sun Belt’s all-time leader in forced fumbles and tackles for losses, as well as being tied with some guy named Terrell Suggs as the all-time sacks leader in FBS play.
Stats are stats but the man has speed at the line and the Fun Belt wasn’t so fun if he got into your backfield.
He has that speed and potential to improve his off the line execution and with world class facilities and trainers, the size issue shouldn’t be that big of a concern, especially if he stays on the sidelines for a couple of years. A hard worker that seems to have his head on his shoulders, best believe he’s going to give you his all from camp to the regular season.
A film junkie who likes to play mind games with opponents, Rolland-Jones has a “cerebral assassin” mindset who approaches the offensive linemen like a pitcher would against batters. Possessing various skills to lull the blockers into a comfort zone of sorts he looks to exploit the offense with his strategy before using his physical gifts.
Where Rolland-Jones might land?
Rolland-Jones can thrive in a linebacker position in a 3-4 defense to compensate for his size. With his experience as an edge rusher, he could become an “out-of-nowhere” kind of pass rusher. I see JRJ going somewhere as high as the 3rd round and as low as the 6th round. Look for a team like Tennessee who has a mix of young and veteran players at the linebacker position to draft Rolland-Jones and let him develop for a couple of years.