So what's the NFL draft lowdown on Alabama's Terrence Cody? By Don Kausler Jr. -- The Birmingham News February 27, 2010, 12:06PM http://blog.al.com/tide-source/2010/02/so_whats_the_nfl_draft_lowdown_1.html Terrence Cody caused concern at the Senior Bowl when he weighed in at 370 pounds. He weighed in a 354 pounds today at the NFL Scouting Combine. (Cliff Welch / Icon SMI)INDIANAPOLIS - At least half of the 32 teams in the NFL now run 3-4 defenses. That's good news for former Alabama All-American nose guard Terrence Cody, because a big man in the middle of the three-man line is a focal point for the defense. "It's hard to find those big bodies, period," Minnesota Vikings coach Brad Childress said at the NFL Scouting Combine. Asked specifically about Cody, Childress said, "I've only seen a couple of his plays, but he's an active big guy. You value those guys." The Chicago Bears are unlikely to draft Cody, first because their first pick is in the third round and second, because they run a 4-3 defense, but Bears coach Lovie Smith is high on Cody. "He's a force inside," Smith said. "That's an athlete, too." The problem is that "Mount Cody" weighed 370 pounds last month at the Senior Bowl. Is that too big? "We'll find out if that's an issue or not. He won't be around long if he turns into a blimp," Childress said. Sharing that concern is former Dallas Cowboys executive Gil Brandt, now a draft analyst for NFL.com. "I'm interested to see what he weighs here," Brandt said. "Terrence Cody is a man among boys. He occupies a bunch of blockers for you. He's just a very good football player. But he has to remember, as he gets older, he'll lose some quickness. All of a sudden, he's going to be a hard guy to block, but he's not going to make any plays. Let's hope he keeps his weight down. What he'll do is get Brinks to pick up the money he's going to get. "I myself think he should be 350, but that's not up to me to decide. They now have scientific mechanisms for testing what your ideal weight is. I would think his ideal weight would be around 350. "Remember this: In pro football, there's a lot more passing than there is in college football. Consequently, there's a lot more running if you're rushing the passer." Cody eased those concerns today, weighing in at 354 pounds. There's concern that Cody could only be a two-down player, as he was at Alabama. "Looking at a guy that size, I can see why people would say that," Smith said. Why are guys who plug the middle so valued? "It's no different than baseball," Childress said. "Strength up the middle. "If it's like butter, you have a responsibility as an offensive coordinator to probe it and run it in there again. Most people will. The biggest thing is to exert your will on somebody. If a guy's a good player on the inside, it's not so easy to exert your will on him." So what is the lowdown on Cody? Cody could be a first- or second-round pick in the April draft, according to various projections. Tony Pauline of TFYDraft.com, writing for SI.com, projects Cody as the 27th pick in the first round. Here is what Pauline writes: Cody played well in spurts last season but, like (Florida DE Carlos) Dunlap, his motivation toward the little things has been questioned. His physical conditioning during the Senior Bowl has been well documented. Cody is not expected to show up at the combine looking like Adonis, but he still needs to round into better shape over the next few weeks. Here's an analysis by NFLDraftScout.com, which predicts Cody will be selected midway through the second round of the draft: Overview: The difference between a good Alabama defense in 2007 and a great one in '08 might have been the emergence of Cody. Like most nose guards, Cody's value starts with his size. In his case, it's also in his ability to force teams to dedicate two blockers to stopping him. Cody's production shouldn't be defined by his statistics. In two seasons, he posted a combined 52 tackles, 10.5 tackles for loss, two blocked kicks and only a half-sack, yet earned consecutive first-team All-American accolades. No running back rushed for 100 yards against the Tide after Cody transferred from Mississippi Gulf Coast Community Colleeg. As dominant as he is in this role, he is a bit of a one-trick pony. Alabama rotated or substituted at the position enough that some teams view Cody as a specialist, which will no doubt impact his draft standing with those teams. Analysis: •Pass rush: Offers only a minimal pass rush with a marginal burst off the snap. Lacks the agility and straight-line speed to close on the quarterback and turn pressures into sacks. Will become lazy in his fundamentals and even stops moving his feet to just lean on blockers on passing plays. •Run defense: Rarely moved off the line of scrimmage by one offensive lineman and even against double teams is often able to create such a pile in the middle that opponents can't run inside. At his best in short-yardage situations and can create a pile. Can slip off blocks as the ballcarrier goes by to make tackles at the line. •Explosion: Adequate burst off the snap, but has explosive power to knock the offensive lineman back into the pocket. •Strength: Massive defender with rare strength. Rarely moved off the line of scrimmage by one blocker and is often able to hold up against double-teams due to his leg drive and leverage. Capable of knocking back the long-snapper back and getting his hands up to block kicks. Tires easily and quickly loses leverage when he does so. •Tackling: Heavy drag-down tackler and catches most of his tackles by simply sliding off blocks as the back runs by. Lacks agility necessary to break down in space and is therefore forced to lunge at ballcarriers in the open field. Typically pushes his opponent to the ground, rather than wrapping up. •Intangibles: Too heavy to be an every-down player. Used as part of a rotation at Alabama and will have to be used in a similar role in the NFL. Wasn't nearly as effective in the second half of last season, prompting concern about his ability to stay fresh in a 16-game NFL season. Utilized as a fullback in short-yardage situations at times. Intimidating presence in the backfield, but typically is effective in this manner only due to defenders moving out of his way. Rarely gets his hands on the defender and makes a true block.