Jay Higgins
Jay Higgins  LB  Iowa | NFL Draft 2025 Souting Report - Portrait Image
Jay Higgins
Height
6-2
Weight
227
College
Iowa
Position
LB
Class
Sophomore
Home town
Indianapolis
84.4/100
Player Rating
8
PositionRank (LB)
4.72
FortyYD Time
Sacks
2
Fumbles Forced
1
Tackles
171
Sol tackles
79

Jay Higgins LB Iowa | NFL Draft Profile & Scouting Report

Jay Higgins LB Iowa
NFL Draft Profile & Scouting Report

PLAY STYLE: MULI-ROLE LB
Last Updated: 07/10/2024
Draft Year: 2025
40 time: 4.72 seconds (47%*)
Age: 22.4 DOB: 02/14/2002
Measurables:
Height: 6-2 (55%*) Weight: 227 (9%*)
Forty: 4.72 (O) (47%*)
0% 100%
(C) - NFL Combine (P) - Pro Day (O) - Other (HS) -Estimated from High School Combine
For an explanation of how the (HS) data is calculated see this article
SHARE THIS PROFILE:
PLAY STYLE: MULI-ROLE LB
Last Updated: 07/10/2024
Draft Year: 2025
40 time: 4.72 seconds (47%*)
Age: 22.4 DOB: 02/14/2002
Measurables:
0% 100%
Height: 6-2 (55%*) Weight: 227 (9%*)
Forty: 4.72 (O) (47%*)
(C) - NFL Combine (P) - Pro Day (O) - Other
(HS) -Estimated from High School Combine
For an explanation of how the (HS) data is calculated see this article
SHARE THIS PROFILE:
Overall Rating: 84.4 / 100
Average rating of opposition Offense player has faced
Offense Rating:
80%
Click the links below to view how player ranks vs other prospects.
Tackling:
92%
Pass Rush:
66%
Run Defense:
88%
Coverage:
96%
DRAFT PROJECTION: 3rd
Overall Rank: #98 Position rank: #8
College Games: 29 College Snaps: 1240
Grade: 3 ESPN  Stars 3 ESPN  Stars ESPN RATING: 72/100
College Combine Results
Grade: 247 Sports 3  Stars 247 Sports 83 Stars 247 RATING: 83/100
Grade: 3 Stars 3 Stars RIVALS RATING: 5.5 (90%)
Player Comparison* (Similarity level)
Junior Colson - Michigan
81%
Marte Mapu - Sacramento State
71%
Tommy Eichenberg - Ohio State
69%
Draft Profile: Bio
Jay Higgins, born in Indianapolis, Indiana, emerged as a defensive powerhouse for the Iowa Hawkeyes. A product of Brebeuf Jesuit Prep, Higgins arrived at Iowa as a three-star recruit across major scouting services. His high school accolades set the stage for a remarkable collegiate career.

Higgins' journey at Iowa began with special teams contributions, gradually evolving into a dominant force at linebacker. His breakout 2023 season saw him tie the school record with 171 total tackles, ranking third nationally. This performance earned him first-team All-America honors from multiple outlets and established him as a cornerstone of Iowa's renowned defense.

Throughout his career, Higgins has amassed 217 tackles over 45 games, showcasing consistent improvement each season. His decision to return for the 2024 season has generated significant buzz, with preseason accolades including first-team All-America selections from Walter Camp, Athlon, and Phil Steele. Higgins' trajectory points towards him potentially joining the pantheon of great Iowa linebackers.
Scouting Report: Strengths
  • Sideline-to-sideline motor evidenced by his gaudy tackle numbers, routinely cleaning up plays all over the gridiron.
  • Textbook wrap-up tackler with minimal whiffs, serving as a reliable last line of defense against the run.
  • Plus coverage skills for an off-ball backer, showing the chops to hang in nickel packages at the next level.
  • Stout at the point of attack, consistently winning the leverage battle and stuffing inside runs with authority.
  • Natural field general, quarterbacking the defense and earning the trust of the coaching staff as a team captain.
  • High-floor prospect who brings it every snap, logging double-digit tackles in most outings during his breakout year.
  • Special teams ace early in his career, offering immediate four-phase value as he develops into a defensive contributor.
  • Football IQ off the charts, displaying uncanny anticipation and always seeming to be around the rock.
Scouting Report: Weaknesses
  • Lacks ideal bulk for an inside backer, potentially struggling to stack-and-shed against NFL-caliber road graders.
  • Straight-line speed is pedestrian, potentially limiting his ability to recover if caught out of position at the next level.
  • Minimal production as a blitzer, raising questions about his ability to impact passing downs as more than a coverage defender.
  • One-year wonder as a full-time starter, leaving scouts wondering if he can replicate his production consistently.
  • May need time to adjust to NFL offensive complexity after thriving in Iowa's relatively straightforward defensive scheme.
Scouting Report: Summary
Jay Higgins fits the mold of a potential three-down WILL in a 4-3 front at the next level, with the instincts and coverage chops to stay on the field in sub-packages. His tackling prowess and run-stuffing ability should translate immediately, making him a day one contributor against the ground game and on passing downs.

His tweener size and average athleticism may limit his scheme versatility, but he's tailor-made for a 4-3 defense that can protect him with a stout front four. His special teams experience will be his ticket onto the field early as he acclimates to the speed of the pro game.

While Higgins may not possess the elite physical traits that scouts drool over, his production, football acumen, and well-rounded skill set make him a high-floor prospect likely to come off the board on day two. He projects as a solid starter with the potential to outplay his draft position thanks to his reliability and diverse skill set.
Written By:
K.C. Martinez (Big Ten)

How other scouting services rate Jay Higgins (Overall Rank)

All Scouts AverageOverall Rank
102.0
All Scouts AveragePosition Rank
11.0
*Percentile Ranking in Player's Position Group (NFL Combine Historical Data): This percentile reflects how a player's specific statistics rank in comparison to historical performances at the NFL Combine, specifically within their position group. A higher percentile indicates a better performance. For instance, being in the 90th percentile for a particular stat means the player outperformed 90% of their peers in that category.

*Similarity Percentage: This percentage is calculated based on a comprehensive analysis of various factors, including height, weight, 40-yard dash times, on-field performance statistics, and overall player rating. The analysis is conducted against our database of draft prospects from 2021 to 2023. This similarity score helps in evaluating how closely a current prospect aligns with past prospects. It is important to note, however, that this score reflects similarities based on college production and attributes, and does not account for eventual success or performance in the NFL.