2021 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Chazz Surratt

2021 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Chazz Surratt

by April 5, 2021 0 comments

Former quarterback turned all-star linebacker? That is Chazz Surratt’s story at the University of North Carolina. After playing quarterback for three years (starting one), he knew that his talents were best used elsewhere, especially with Sam Howell coming to save the day. PFF grades state that Surratt has had his struggles at both positions, but the NFL and the draft community still seem to be in favor of the former Tarheel’s projection to the next level. Let’s see who is more right.

Make sure to check out all of our other 2021 NFL Draft Scouting Reports.

Player Bio

Name: Chazz Surratt

Jersey: #21

Position: Linebacker

School: North Carolina

Class: Redshirt Senior 

Height: 6’2”

Weight: 225 lbs

Tackling (6.5/10) 

Surratt starts well. He is a strong tackler that is very willing to take on anyone. There is power, control, and desire wrapped up in each tackle. The North Carolina product does have a few noticeable flaws, however. First, he tackles way too tall: the tackle is around the shoulders with no leverage. In other words, this will be more susceptible to being broken by NFL ball carriers. The NFL has enough mediocre to poor tacklers, and it cannot add another one. This is easily coachable, and Surratt had flashes of good form, so that is why he got an above average here. 

Note: This scale uses 5.0 as average and 9.0 as elite.

Hit strength (6.0/10) 

This category is hard to gauge. When Surratt hits a quarterback, running back, or receiver, they are noticeably shaken. He has true power at the point of attack; however, he has zero impact on larger players. This will be talked about next, but he gets bullied by linemen and larger offensive players. This is scary at the next level, and it will certainly hinder his positional versatility.

In short, he can lay the wood on smaller players but is ineffective on larger ones.

Run Defense (3.0/10) 

This one hurt. The only thing keeping this score from being a two or a one is the fact that Surratt can jump through the holes that the linemen make. He does not finish the play, because he gets tossed around like a ragdoll by offensive linemen. If a lineman gets their paws on Surratt, kiss him goodbye. He was pancaked multiple times. That cannot happen in the NFL: defense cannot function with 10 effective players. This is really scary in terms of Surratt being a true linebacker at the next level. Maybe he is best suited elsewhere.

Pursuit (7.5/10) 

Finally, a bright spot, again. Surratt is quite amazing with his pursuit angles all over the field. Few can track as he can; however, the former Tarheel does overpursue targets consistently when he has an open lane to them. This occurs, especially in the backfield. Mobile quarterbacks will be a headache for Surratt, because he moves too fast for his own good. 

IQ (9.5/10) 

Surratt is a true field general. He may be 24 years old, but he looks like he has been playing for most of his life. Few have looked like Surratt before and during the play. Never once did he look like a deer in headlights. The blitz timing, snap timing, and overall play execution was phenomenal. That is rare at the collegiate level, and that is amazing day one in the NFL. This will be one of the main reasons Surratt gets drafted. He did miss the read twice on read options, but that is far from a concern. 

Coverage (7.0/10) 

Surratt once again is quite solid. This may be one of the highlights of his game. Even wide receivers could not beat him in one-on-one coverage. Surratt is dynamic and aware of his surroundings, which is a major asset when it comes to both zone and man coverage. He seems to even be able to feel what is going on behind him like he has eyes in the back of his head. Surratt will not be an asset in press, though. His play seems to be cornering him into one type of role at the next level.

Straight Line Speed (7.25/10) 

Surratt flies both in-game speed and tested speed. He ran a 4.58 second 40-yard-dash at his pro day, and he plays like it. Surratt kept up with a wide receiver one-on-one on a deep route with zero separation. That is spectacular. The NFL will love this speed. 

Short Area Burst (6.75/10) 

Surratt has solid short-range mobility. He is fluid, but it is far from an elite level of fluidity. The burst is above average on tape and in his pro day testing numbers. Surratt ran above the 65th percent in both his three-cone and short shuttle tests. This will certainly keep his draft stock around the day two range.

Positional Versatility (5.0/10) 

Surratt played a multitude of roles including slot cornerback, but he mainly was a linebacker. Given his poor run defense and inability to deal with offensive linemen, the former Tarheel cannot remain at linebacker in the NFL. Safety may be the best route given his IQ and coverage skills. He may be able to stay at slot cornerback as well. Overall, there are a few roles that Surratt can play, but they are not the role he primarily played at North Carolina, and that should hurt his draft stock. 

Competitive Toughness (4.25/5) 

Surratt gives his all on many plays, but the effort is not fully consistent. When pass-rushing, he is off and on in using moves and hand fighting. Given his inability to deal with linemen, he should be doing this every time. Another instance was versus Virginia Tech, where he gave up on a run play early that ended up breaking for over 15 yards. Surratt has to keep his head in the game the whole time. 

Injury (3.5/5)

Surratt had major injuries in both high school as well as college. Fortunately, his college injury led to him switching to linebacker and not quarterback.

Player Summary 

This was a rollercoaster. Surratt does so many things well, but he fails at critical points for his transition to the next level. It is hard to give him anything on day two solely because his best position is not one that he has played consistently. There does appear to be the potential to play very well at safety or in the slot, however, so the position change will not hurt him that much. Surratt has the athleticism and intelligence to play at a high level in the NFL. The ceiling is pretty low, especially since he is much older than most prospects, but the floor is undeniable. Surratt should be a day one starter on a team in need of a linebacker, slot corner, and safety hybrid player. The boom or bust factor is a big one here, so all eyes point to draft day to see which if he pans out or fails.

 Final Grade (66.25/100): Late Third Round

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