Monday, June 15, 2009

Raiders Sign Veteran Greg Ellis

The Raiders signed veteran DE/LB Greg Ellis to a 3 year deal today with the contract details unknown. Ellis, who was cut by the Cowboys a few weeks ago, will transition from a 3-4 LB to a 4-3 DE. Does this move mean that Derrick Burgess will be shipped off for a 3rd round pick? I am hopeful that the organization will keep DBurg around 1 more season to squeeze as much production from him in a contract year.

If DBurg stays in Oakland, this is the list of DLineman competing for a spot on the final 53 man roster:

DE Derrick Burgess, Greg Ellis, Jay Richardson, Trevor Scott, Greyson Gunheim, Stryker Sulak (R)

DT Gerrard Warren, Tommy Kelly, Terdell Sands, Ryan Boschetti, William Joseph

Greg Ellis - 6'6", 262 lbs, 11 year veteran
2008 Stats: 36 tackles (25 solo); 1 interception, 8 sacks

Ellis is 10-year veteran with very good size and adequate speed and quickness. He reacts quickly to the run. He has good size and strength to maintain effective hand use. He has long arms to stack and shed. He will get upright with his pad level, but has good strength and balance to keep his feet. He's a former defensive end who understands leverage. He can play physical and get off blocks with good timing. He is still quick enough to work his feet and re-gain outside leverage. He is also quick enough to contain and force running backs back inside. He has adequate acceleration in space with good effort to pursue from behind. As a pass rusher, the Cowboys will bring him off the edge from a three-point stance where he has good success recording sacks when his hand is on the ground. He has strength in his upper body to re-work his hands inside then react off of the offensive tackle's technique. He's physical with his hands and works to finish. He is also strong with the ability to rip inside-out. He has a variety of pass-rush moves including spins and counters. He does a good job turning speed to power. He will get upright on counter moves, but comes hard inside and has strength into traffic. He has some limitations in coverage due to his lack of burst in space. He will stall changing direction and lack the quickness to break down consistently, when isolated.