Darius Fleming from Notre Dame was one of those under-the-radar players you'd consider picking midway through the 2012 NFL Draft. Fleming didn't stand out with his measureables and there were concerns he wouldn't have a position in the league, but there was definite talent if people recognized it.
Mike Mayock had this to say about Fleming in the lead-up to the Draft:
"Darius Fleming to me is underrated. He’s one of those tweener-sized guys — 247 pounds. Where do you play him? He’s more explosive than teams thought; he ran in the mid-4.5s. He caught the ball in the linebacker drills and he’ll be a core special teams player. He ran really well today. I think he’s a middle-round pick."
However, it looks like the San Francisco 49ers will have to wait awhile to see what Fleming can do on the football field.
Darius Fleming tore his anterior cruciate ligament during his first rookie minicamp practice on Friday, according to his agent Andy Simms. That puts his 2012 in serious jeopardy.
Fleming, a 6-foot-1, 245-pounder from Notre Dame suffered the injury in a non-contact drill, coming down on his knee awkwardly. He attempted to continue doing drills, but quickly realized his knee was giving out. He had an MRI, which confirmed the injury.
The 49ers don't have any glaring weaknesses in their defense, but they could afford some more depth from their outside linebackers to generate more pass rush off the edge and better pass coverage on short and intermediate routes. Losing Fleming isn't a huge blow, but it is a significant one.
Talk about Fleming with 49ers fans, head on over to Niners Nation.
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