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2023 Steelers Prospect: Clemson LB, Trenton Simpson

Ranked By: Joe 412 and John Toth

Clemson’s Trenton Simpson, in the vein of the modern day multi-positional

linebacker, projects as a hybrid player at the next level. His rare combination of

strength and speed will allow him to play both inside and outside, making a great

candidate to help the Pittsburgh Steelers fill a hole in their defense.

A former 4-star (ESPN) and a 5-star (247 Sports) athlete in high school,

Simpson was heavily recruited for his array of physical attributes. At the

conclusion of his NCAA career, he best demonstrated his positional flexibility by

becoming a semifinalist for both the Butkus Award and the Lott Impact trophy.

Simpson will be a player at the next level, perhaps best described in the

hybrid role the Steelers covet. His play reminds Draft 412 of Ryan Shazier, an ILB

that could contribute both inside and in pass coverage, but it is hard to ignore

flashes of Troy Polamalu or even Cowboys Micah Parsons in his game. Simpson

can play all over, moving to safety, linebacker and in some instances help with the

rush. Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah who was drafted by Cleveland 52nd overall in the

2021 draft is a great comparison of how Simpson may be used in the NFL.

Here is a look at Trenton Simpson pros and cons:

LB-Trenton Simpson Measurables: 

Height: 6’3” 

Weight: 240 lbs.

Hands: 10 3/8”

Arm: 32”

Span: 76 6/8”


  • Elite speed, unofficial 4.3 type times given from Clemson coaches

  • Flexibility, able to rush or cover on 3rd down with no issue

  • Big hitter, with elite range

  • A sure tackler who wraps up; technically sound

  • Gives team options at where he can line up, down to down


  • Can be taken out when trying to seal the edges by bigger lineman

  • More speed than strength

  • Can be over aggressive at times and bites on fakes at times

  • Must improve hands when battling one on one with blockers

Final Analysis

Trenton Simpson is a tough player to project. Simpson is a freak of nature with his

build and speed. His flexibility and athleticism should have defensive coordinators

begging for this pick, as he should be able to succeed in most defensive schemes.

But having no natural position may cause him to slip.

Projected Draft Position

Trenton Simpson could go as early as mid-first or as late as mid-2nd . Either way

expect Simpson to be in the top three linebackers taken and for the Steelers to

have a keen interest, as he fits their scheme and needs well.

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