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Mario Haggan

SELECTED BY TAMPA BAY , ROUND 7, PICK 27, OVERALL PICK 228
LB | (6-2, 252, 4.91) | Mississippi State
By Pro Football Weekly

Notes: Redshirted in 1998. Lettered as a backup defensive end in '99. Started at middle linebacker in 2000 and won All-Southeastern Conference honors. Started Games 1-3 and 8-11 at the DLE spot and Games Four, Six and Seven at middle linebacker in '01. Missed Game Five with a sprained ankle. Played in an unconventional defense, as the team often lined up with just one linebacker. Started all 11 games in '02 and had 119 tackles, 7½ tackles for loss, three forced fumbles and broke up one pass. Was second-team All-SEC and didn't hurt himself at the Senior Bowl.

Positives: Quick-twitch pass rusher with an explosive first step. He has good athleticism and is a hard worker. Has impressive size, upper-body strength and long arms for a linebacker. Plays with leverage and is a sure wrap-up tackler. Excellent intangibles as the team leader and captain. Instinctive and smart. Will flatten out around the edge and is fluid moving forward and backward, possesses lateral quickness and has added lower-body strength.

Negatives: As a middle linebacker, he is much better playing up close than backed off. Haggan may lack speed to the sideline, but he plays much quicker than he times. Will struggle a bit at times in man-to-man coverage. Doesn't have the size for defensive end. Doesn't knock you back with his explosion and will disappear at times.

Summary: Versatile, big-play 'backer didn't show enough consistency to be a first-day pick.

* Player biographies are provided by Pro Football Weekly.