Major land for Auburn as it now possesses arguably the best inside linebacker corps in the country with Reuben Foster (Auburn, Ala.) joining fellow Under Armour All-American Trey Johnson (Lawrenceville, Ga./Central Gwinnett). Physically, Foster is one of the more dominant linebackers we have seen in recent classes and we expect him to contribute immediately for the Tigers. While a great fit schematically for Alabama in the 3-4 defense, Foster might be called upon to more for the Tigers in an effort to revamp a lackluster defense that’s in need of young studs to stop the run.
When it comes to stacking the inside run and punishing ball carriers as a tackler, Foster is in a league of his own. He is very explosive, often violent on contact and plays the game with a fast and physical style that is coveted at the position. More than just a downhill plugger, this is a defender with sideline-to-sideline range and deceptively good laterally agility as well as coverage skills. He can beat blockers with strength or to the point with quickness. There are not a lot of holes in his game.
New Auburn defensive coordinator Brian VanGorder has a loaded defensive class headed to the Plains in 2013. The front seven is stacked with disruptive difference-makers and he has two inside guys in Foster and Johnson with ability to play early. If both prospects end up at Auburn and pan out as their abilities project, expect the lighter Johnson to likely slide outside and for VanGorder to incorporate both players, as his defense is multiple in its makeup and built around athletic linebackers who can run. It’s a good problem to have for a defense that needs vast improvement.