(Because undrafted free agents are people too, I decided to continue the scouting report series for all of the rookies the Lions signed. Starting off the UDFA version of scouting reports is Matt Clapp.)
FB Matt Clapp (Oklahoma) - Undrafted Free Agent
With only one fullback on the roster (Jerome Felton), the belief was that the Lions would either draft or sign someone to shore up depth at the position. The Lions were actively targeting John Connor from Kentucky before the draft, but the Jets ended up taking him in the fifth round. No other fullbacks were worth a serious look in the draft, so the Lions decided to bring in Matt Clapp as an undrafted free agent.
More of an athlete playing fullback than a throwback type. Seems to enjoy carries and catches more than blocking. Still, he appears to be a competitive player and works hard to execute his assignment. Also gives good effort on special teams.
Positives: Underrated, athletic lead blocker rarely used on the college level. Displays terrific blocking vision, plays with a nasty attitude, and gets out front of ball-carriers then squares into defenders. Works hard, accelerates into blocks, and jolts defenders at the point of attack. Stays with assignments, blocks down well on defenders, and opens up the running lanes. Displays good awareness.
Negatives: Really best in a straight line and does not display the agility to turn the corner. Rarely asked to handle the ball.
Clapp is a good overall athlete with good size at 6-2 245 pounds and last season was used as a receiver around the goal line and had 9 catches for 92 yards and 3 touchdowns. Does a good job as a run blocker and could be used more in the passing game if Oklahoma didn’t have some many other weapons.
Career - 8 rushes, 22 yards, 0 TD; 9 receptions, 92 yards, 3 TD
Couldn't find any. He is a fullback, after all.
Couple of interesting tidbits from his bio on Oklahoma's website:
Son of Greg and Shelley Clapp ... has taken an ice bath prior to every game since high school ... enjoys playing chess ... boasts a body fat percentage of just 9.8 percent ... planned program major.
Also, he has great hair:
Outlook for 2010
Clapp has a great chance of making the team simply because the only other fullback on the roster, as mentioned, is Jerome Felton. The fact that he played special teams so often at Oklahoma will help his chances assuming he also gets time on special teams with the Lions. Whether or not he makes the team will mainly come down to whether or not the Lions want to keep two fullbacks on the roster. Considering Felton was banged up last season that may be a good idea. Then again, the Lions could always just put Clapp on the practice squad and activate him to the 53-man roster if there is a need to add depth to the fullback position during the season.
Previously: Ndamukong Suh, Jahvid Best, Amari Spievey, Jason Fox, Willie Young, Tim Toone