Now that Devin Bush has been drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers at the 2019 NFL Draft in Nashville, Tenn., here's a look at what fans need to know about the 5'11", 234-pound Michigan linebacker.
Bush is twitchy, physical and the most instinctive linebacker in this year’s draft. His read-and-react skills are already at the level you’d expect to see from an NFL veteran. He’s undersized but exceedingly physical, packing a wallop as a tackler and rarely missing a tackle. He’s also surprisingly effective working through traffic, with a combination of low center of gravity and outstanding balance, plus his sudden and heavy hands. He can run — a sideline-to-sideline hitter. He’s a strong blitzer and is excellent in zone coverage, where his instincts really show up. He also has NFL bloodlines — his father was a first-round pick of the Falcons as a safety in 1995 and a member of the 1999 Super Bowl champion Rams.
His lack of size is going to cause some issues. Even if Bush proves capable of stacking and shedding — despite his success in college, it’s a question mark as he heads toward the pros — the lack of length is going to show up when he’s asked to guard tight ends. He’ll often be giving up five or six inches in height when running in coverage, and he had trouble working downfield against bigger targets at the collegiate level. NFL teams will find that matchup if they can get him on a tight end.
Bush is the kind of guy who can quarterback a defense for the next decade, and having such a cerebral linebacker is more important than ever as offenses keep evolving. Because of the lack of size, he doesn’t have the same ceiling as LSU’s Devin White, but he’ll make a nice consolation prize for a team that couldn’t get its hands on White.