by Ryan Myers
Photo courtesy of Irish Sports Daily.
At Draft 412, the NFL draft talk never ends. We will keep you ready for the next set of gridiron stars—from today and all the way until draft night 2024. We will bring you mock drafts, player profiles, individual team needs, and everything else you may need related to the 2024 NFL Draft.
Today’s Spotlight - Notre Dame, Linebacker, J.D. Bertrand
Name - J.D. Bertrand
Pos - LB
Team - Notre Dame
HT/WT - 6’1” 230 lbs.
Born - 05/05/2000
Home – Alpharetta, GA
J.D. Bertrand played his high school football at Blessed Trinity High School and helped them to back-to-back Georgia Class AAAA State Championships in his junior and senior seasons in 2017 and 2018. During his senior season, he registered 83 tackles, 13.0 TFL, 4.0 sacks and one interception. He earned a 4-star recruit rating from ESPN and 247sports while having a 3-star rating from Rivals.com. He was the 26th ranked outside linebacker nationally and the 40th ranked player in Georgia by ESPN. He had many offers from several power 5 schools and chose Notre Dame as his college football destination.
In his freshman year, Bertrand appeared in 4 games playing exclusively on special teams for the Irish. His sophomore year was his first season of action on the defensive side as he played in 11 games tallying 7 tackles, 5 of them solo. JD’s breakout year would be his junior year in 2021 where he started in all of Notre Dame’s 13 games and was the team leader in tackles, recording an impressive total of 102, 65 of which were solo. He also had 7 TFL, 1.5 sacks, and a forced fumble.
In his senior season in 2022, Bertrand was named a team captain for the first time and started in 12 of the team’s 13 games, totaling 82 tackles, 45 solo, added 8.5 TFLs, and two sacks. Bertrand decided to return for his fifth season this year at Notre Dame and so far, he has played in 7 games registering 52 tackles including 5 TFL and 1.5 sacks. He is on pace to lead the Irish in tackles for the third consecutive season.
Bertrand is a sure tackler, and plays the game with speed and instinctiveness. He has the necessary size to make the tough tackles for an outside linebacker and uses his considerable frame to wrap up the ball carriers. He is fast enough to cover from sideline to sideline and has great chase down speed, making him a dependable option for teams to use as a QB spy and a run stopper. Bertrand’s speed and range makes the defense seem “wider” for ball carriers, creating a situation where it’s tougher for them to get into open space on the outside. He is an extremely smart player who has a great understanding for the angles and other details of the game.
Bertrand isn’t the strongest of backers, and is more of a speedy, hybrid type player and less of a bruiser. He does not possess the strength to be a consistent pass rusher and his lack of pass rush moves makes him less of a threat in these scenarios.
J.D. Bertrand may not be the strongest linebacker, but his athletic ability and reliable tackling are his best qualities. He is a leader and a student of the game with a nose for the football and an ability to make plays all over the field.
Draft 412 Draft Prediction - 6th round