Profile: James Vaughters
Location: Tucker, Georgia
High School: Tucker
Weight: 237 pounds
Vaughters has very good natural size, strength, and athleticism first of all. He is a very strong player that is pushing 6-foot-3 in height, and he is already closing in on 240 pounds.
He trains extremely hard and he has very little body fat and he uses that strength to help him on the field. He went from linebacker to defensive end and then back to linebacker in high school over the past three years and he will likely stay on the second level of defense on the next level.
He is best when playing north-south and ideally he will be most effective as an inside linebacker. He is strong enough to attack the ball carrier up the middle and he is smart enough to make the calls at middle linebacker as well. His intelligence is one of his biggest strengths on and off the field.
His lateral movement is an area he can improve on and that will help him become more of a sideline to sideline linebacker. He is a little stiff and improving his flexibility could help him play the run and pass better.
At defensive end in 2008, he really shined. He exploded off the ball and the rushed the quarterback creating pressure much of the season. Back at linebacker, he has to drop into coverage, and that is something else that he still needs to work on.
Like all linebackers, Vaughters has strengths and weaknesses, but overall, he is one of the top inside linebackers in the country. He reads and reacts quickly, he uses his hands well, and he plays a very smart game of football. I'd like to see him play with a little more aggression and improve his flexibility, but with his size and smarts, he should see the field very early at Stanford.