Barrows posted a new Q&A last night, in which he brought up a topic that has always left me a little perplexed: the potential of Ahmad Brooks.
Question: Matt - love the blog, bro. Which players are you most interested in watching this offseason?
Kyle, Tupelo, Ms
Answer: Two players with similar pasts - Ahmad Brooks and Jimmy Williams. Both have off-the-chart talent, but have been hurt by off-the-field issues and lack of motivation. I'm wondering if the Mike Singletary magic will work on these guys. If it does, and Singletary can get Brooks and Williams to realize their potential, then the 49ers suddenly have excellent depth at OLB, where they are thin, and at strong safety where Michael Lewis isn't getting any younger. It also might embolden Singletary to take chances on other so-called high-risk players ...
People have spoken about Ahmad Brooks with a general agreement on a high talent level. Although Brooks has played often as a middle linebacker, his scouting report indicates an ability to move outside:
He has excellent size for the middle in either a 4-3 or 3-4 scheme and is aggressive with some natural playmaking ability . . . He has enough speed to make plays outside the tackle box when he takes good angles. Brooks is a powerful, jarring tackler who arrives with some nastiness. His recognition and instincts need to improve. He will too often take false steps before reading the play . . . Brooks remains a work in progress and he has to stay on the field with more regularity to reach his potential, but there is a lot to build on here and he could have a bright future.
What do folks think the 49ers can really get from Brooks? He's been in the NFL for 4 seasons and has been active in a total of 13 games. Not exactly a broad brush of experience to draw from.
Anyways, I'm curious how much we'll see of Ahmad Brooks this season, so I've attached a poll. For those who don't know, although a team has a 53-man roster entering the season, for each game they can only have 45 active members of the roster. Brooks spent a whole lot of time on the 49ers 53-man roster, but was never activated for a game last season. Given the need for player rotations, if Brooks was activated, it's likely he'd see some sort of playing time.