MONTY RICE | Georgia | IB | #32 | Sr | 6002 | 238 | Huntsville, AL | James Clemens HS
Manning the middle of a talented Georgia defense, Rice is the type of run-and-chase linebacker who is in high demand in the modern NFL. Rice is a super explosive player who does some masterful work in pursuit, quickly closing the gap with absurd closing burst. Working to the perimeter, opposing ball-carriers have some serious issues getting around the corner. In pass coverage, Rice has very nice instincts and understanding of zone spacing with ability to close quickly. Whether in zone or pass coverage, Rice does an outstanding job maintaining solid position and making plays at the catch point. There is a clear role for him at the next level on obvious passing downs and in sub-packages. Rice is not your traditional early down run stopper who does some admirable work at the point of attack. He is a lightly built linebacker who lacks length to consistently stack and shed near the line of scrimmage. Rice can get absolutely overwhelmed in the run game, bringing a lot of questions of how high a volume he can carry for a defense. In all, his tape leaves a lot to be desired. With this lack of physicality, an opportunity should not come until some time on Day 3 of the draft. Some teams will bet on his athletic traits. With his combination of quickness, burst and passing game contributions, there is a decent baseline for a team to take advantage in certain roles in the pass-happy NFL.
Rice has played in 46 games for the Bulldogs, starting 28. He was a second-team All-SEC selection during the 2019 season and first team in 2020. Played for head coach Wade Waldrop at James Clemens High School in Huntsville, Alabama. Considered as a four-star recruit. Chose Georgia over offers from LSU, Auburn, Arkansas and Cal, among others.
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