Football has become more and more of a passing league. The emphasis on size has gone away. Teams need a SAM to be someone that can hold his ground on run plays that come at him, but that can be done by a 6’1, 240 LB. The key now is for him to be able to hang with TEs, based more on athleticism that just size. Teams are now moving TEs around so if that happens with the SAM on the field, he must be able to play more in space.
This is just the introduction to a great breakdown Tommy has over on Scouts Notebook of the best SAM linebackers in the draft. Check it out. It makes a lot of sense to address middle linebacker in free agency, perhaps with a player like Stephen Tulloch, then shore up the outside spot with an early pick of Zach Brown or Keenan Robinson.