Even though he may not be the first name you hear from this defense, he is a name that scouts know. Malone is a leader and helps get his teammates in the right spot.
Malone is very versatile, he has played inside and outside backer for the Ducks and he has the ability to contribute on special teams. He is very athletic and can cover very well. At the next level, he will have no problem moving to the outside. At 6′ 2″ and 220 pounds, he has the frame to add some more bulk and round out his body to compete at the next level.
He will be a smaller outside backer in the NFL at only 6’2″, so he will most likely have to settle as a 3-4 OLB. At times he is physically overmatched and relies on his speed too much to make up for mistakes in coverage. At the next level that does not work. Playing in the PAC 12 he really does not face many smash mouth run offenses and it remains to be seen if he can be successful against that type of offense.
This season he has compiled 62 tackles, 2.5 TFLs, .5 sack and two passes defended. Derrick Malone, Jr. is a mid level outside linebacker prospect and will most likely be selected in the 4th or 5th rounds. He will test well and can improve his stock in this years playoffs if he shows up big.