My *gut* is that it’s probably either a heart block (which is no immediate deal) or a condition that effects the heart but that is also not only cardiac (connective tissue disorder, etc.). Usually when this stuff is hidden until after the draft it’s something that is not concerning in the short-to-immediate term.It's very hard to say one way or another without knowing what the exact condition is that is affecting JOK. However, the Browns felt comfortable enough to trade up for JOK and give up some assets for him. They have also said nothing but reaffirming things about JOK with regards to the heart condition.
We have not heard anything as of yet that should be an immense amount of concern, but it's something to always keep in mind.
I actually have JOK ranked higher than Simmons because of size and length. Simmons also really played well in the second half of the year when the Cardinals started having him do more traditional MIKE things and less safety things.I love the versatility that JOK, Delpit and Ronnie Harrison give us in that secondary. Hill is also extremely multi-positional. He is best as a slot corner but you can move him to the outside corner or even nickel spots and he could do a serviceable job.
Ronnie Harrison was forced to play a lot of high safety last year because Woods didn't trust any of the others and he did a pretty good job with it, but that is not where he is at his best. Again, extremely versatile player who I think will basically be a roaver.
Delpit, same thing although I think he has the chance to be an elite free safety one day the way JJ3 is right now. I would consider him in that understudy role to Johnson's lead dog -- even though Johnson is only three years older than Delpit. Both will hopefully be with us for a long time.
But, these are the guys -- Harrison, Delpit -- that I would be comparing to what *I think* Woods will use as JOK's role. That isn't to say he won't play linebacker ever but I would lean more "safety" than "linebacker" in that hybrid wording for JOK.
I would also temper first year expectations for him. I'm as excited as anyone. I think versatility is the key to defense in the 2020s NFL but he is going to have a lot to learn. We saw it with Isaiah Simmons last year in Arizona. He struggled horribly for most of the year and teams hunted him in pass coverage.
I think Simmons and JOK are similar enough prospects that looking at his rookie year could be informative for us. That said, we have *way* more talent and support around JOK here than Simmons had in Arizona and the Browns will also be asking much less of JOK than the Cards did of Simmons. This all helps.
The Cardinals basically threw him out there and said, "cover that veteran NFL wide receiver over there." It didn't go well. Woods will not make that same mistake and there are enough pieces on this defense to bring him along slowly and in the right role, me thinks.
I actually have JOK ranked higher than Simmons because of size and length. Simmons also really played well in the second half of the year when the Cardinals started having him do more traditional MIKE things and less safety things.
To your point, what JOK does so well is adds another piece that can play in multiple positions. Troy Hill can play slot or boundary, JJ3 and Ronnie Harrison both so lots of linebacker-y things, JOK can play linebacker or safety, Walker can play the MIKE, SAM, and WILL, Clowney, Jackson, and Myles can all play inside or outside, etc.
The defense is incredibly versatile. Woods has no excuses this year.
I agree with all of this. The differences between Simmons and JOK can be boiled down very quickly to "Projection vs Production." Simmons had athletic traits that people hoped could translate. JOK already did it.Also, in regards to this, the difference between the two players is pretty stark. People thought Isaiah Simmons would be able to cover just because he was super athletic and he would get a few right place at the right time INTs. While that's true, Simmons showed, on tape, that he wasn't very versatile when it came to coverage and had plenty to suggest that he was, at best, mediocre in college. What Simmons did best was as a traditional linebacker, taking on blocks and quickly shedding them to make the play.
In contrast, JOK has shown he is apt at playing coverage in College, so much so that Notre Dame would put him in as a slot corner and feel good about it against NFL prospects. The only flaw I see in his coverage abilities is totally correctable too, which is a huge plus (he struggles at finding a back slipping out into the flat at times). Where JOK struggles is attacking blockers in the running game. That's really his only true weakness. It feels like the Browns defense is being built with this in mind and just keeping their linebackers extremely clean. If you keep JOK clean, and he can run around, the defense is going to benefit immensely.
Maybe the biggest JOK trait that I wasn't expecting is that he does have some legitimately good pass rushing moves as an OLB. Not enough to play him there anywhere close to full time as a 3-4 EDGE rusher, but it's in his bag. A few times a game, if they wished, I think they could use him as a 5th rusher and cause real havoc, just to switch things up from time to time.