Player Profile: Steve Greer; Physicality & Toughness

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By PFC Draft Writer Philip Arnold @PhilipArnold20)

Virginia Linebacker Steve Greer is coming off a very successful career as a Cavalier. In the 2012 season he totaled 122 tackles and was a First Team All-ACC selection.  Through his career at Virginia, Greer was all over the field, totaling 376 tackles which ranks his 6th all-time in Virginia history and was 7th among all active FBS players.  Greer led the Cavaliers in tackles during the ‘09, ’11, and ’12 seasons and was second on the team in 2010.

Greer chose UVA coming out of Solon High School in Solon, Ohio and made an immediate impact for the Cavaliers defensive unit. A political science major, Greer felt Virginia offered a combination of academics & athletics, which not many schools around the country can offer.  Greer was a 4 year starter for the Cavaliers and capped that off with a strong senior season in which landed him an invite to participate in the East-West Shrine Game.  Greer had a good performance at the Shrine game totaling 3 tackles which was 3rd on the West team.  Greer got the opportunity to compete against some of the top players in the draft class and felt he stacked up well doing so.  “I felt really comfortable the whole week in Florida.  I got a lot of information and good coaching while being able to compete against top talent.” Greer answered when asked about his performance.  Greer describes himself as a competitor and focused most on that during the week.  “During the week you are put in unfamiliar situations in learning defenses and going against some of the better talent, I wanted to compete and show whatever situation I’m put in, I will compete.”  Greer also brought his tough, tenacious mentality down to Florida with him.  He was able to showcase his great football instincts and that he’s just an overall football guy.

As a linebacker at Virginia, Greer was best at stopping the run.  He brings a tenacious mean mentality and has fun stopping the run.  He is a guy that can play from sideline to sideline and make plays.  He breaks down well on ball carriers and is a reliable, physical tackler, proved by his numbers at Virginia.  Going into his senior year Greer worked a lot on pass coverage and felt he really improved that aspect of his game this past season. Though he didn’t record an interception, Greer was able to deflect 13 passes during his career.   “This offseason I worked a lot on my pass coverage ability.  I felt I showed and did really well in improving my ability this past year” when asked his pass coverage skills.  “It’s something I want to continue to work and improve upon and become dominate in that aspect and becoming a complete overall linebacker.” Greer also brings a leadership quality with him.  His senior season he was selected as a captain and wants to carry that into the NFL with him. “I can be a leader on and off the field; I want to be a positive influence to the team both in the locker room and out performing on Sundays.”

Standing at 6’ and weighing 236 lbs., Greer won’t have any problems working into different schemes if need be at the NFL level.  As a linebacker at Virginia, Greer has had the opportunity to play in multiple schemes.  He began his first two seasons in the 3-4 defensive schemes, while playing his last two in the 4-3 scheme.  “I really don’t have a preference; I can play wherever it helps a team win.  If that is inside, outside, or on special teams, I will compete and do whatever is best.” Greer’s motor and mentality to be a versatile player models Sean Lee of the Dallas Cowboys. Greer wants to become the “Do it all” player that Lee is both against the run and the pass.  Greer also noted that Lee’s leadership on the Cowboys defense is something he wants to emulate his game toward.

Greer has been preparing for the NFL draft at Virginia with fellow teammates and Strength and Conditioning coach Evan Marcus.  Marcus has experience in the NFL, having been the Dolphins and Falcons head, before coming to Virginia.  Working with Marcus, Greer should have no problems being ready for the transitions to NFL speeds and strengths.  Greer’s Pro Day was last week on the 19th, but hasn’t been released his times and scores yet.  Greer said, “It felt good to run around and I’m excited to getting back to playing football. Knowing that your game film is the most important for scouts, I was able to go out there compete and have fun doing what I love to do.” Greer hasn’t had any direct contact with NFL teams yet, but his agent, Kelli Masters has.

On draft days in April, look for Greer to be a 5th to 7th round guy.  Greer’s physical nature against the run will be a key point most NFL teams look at.  His versatility and experience playing in both a 3-4 and 4-3 schemes will help him in finding an NFL home, along with the performance at the East-West game.  If Greer continues to improve in his pass coverage ability to pair with his physicality as a run defender and tackling skillset, he is a player we can look at 10 years down the road with a strong NFL career as a late round steal.