Jump to content

Ranking the top edge rushers in the 2021 NFL Draft (Athletic)


Recommended Posts

 

A retirement, a return and an opt-out have created dizzying detours in the paths of Jaelan Phillips and Gregory Rousseau to the NFL Draft.

Ten months ago, Rousseau was coming off a 15½-sack season as the left end for the Miami Hurricanes. Phillips, meanwhile, had not played a game in almost two years.

In Phil Steele’s 2020 football preview that reached newsstands in June, Steele featured rankings of the top seniors, juniors and redshirt sophomores for the 2021 draft courtesy of Draftscout.com. At defensive end, Rousseau was No. 1. And Phillips? He was No. 64.

The rankings were perfectly understandable. Rousseau was the hottest pass rusher not named Chase Young in 2019 and Phillips was off somewhere in football’s no man’s land.

Following recommendations from the UCLA medical and coaching staffs, Phillips had announced his retirement from football in December 2018 after his second down year in Westwood. Multiple concussions, multiple surgeries on his left wrist stemming from an off-campus moped accident and multiple ankle injuries led him to walk away and enroll at Los Angeles City College to study music and concentrate on his keen interest in becoming a rapper and music producer.

Two months later, Phillips had a change of heart and decided to resume his football career as a transfer at Miami.

“Thank you God for giving me a second chance,” he tweeted. “The COMEBACK is going to be something serious.”

As Rousseau was running wild in 2019, Phillips, the No. 1 player in the country in the class of 2017, was sitting out as a redshirt. The prospect of having both players rushing the passer off the edge was a major reason why Steele predicted the Hurricanes would be the nation’s most improved team in 2020.

Everything changed on Aug. 6 when Rousseau elected to opt out of the season. It changed again when Phillips stepped in for Rousseau at left end and fulfilled his immense promise with an outstanding year.

The Hurricanes finished 8-3 and played in the Cheez-It Bowl, a game Phillips opted out of in order to prepare for the draft. The pair finally was on the same field together March 29 for their pro day in Coral Gables, Fla., and scouts were far more impressed with Phillips’ athletic testing than Rousseau’s.

A strong indicator of how the tide has turned toward Phillips came from my polling earlier this month of 18 executives in personnel. Not only did Phillips finish ahead of Rousseau on 14 ballots, he also fared better on two separate questions.

Asked who among the edge rushers had the best chance to bust, Rousseau led with seven votes while Phillips didn’t have any. Jayson Oweh collected four votes, Carlos Basham Jr. and Joe Tryon each had two and Joseph Ossai and Kwity Paye each had one. (One of the 18 scouts declined to vote.)

All 18 personnel evaluators then were asked who was the best pass rusher in the draft. Phillips dominated here with 13 votes, followed by Rousseau with three then Paye and Tryon, each with one.

“That’s a no-brainer,” an AFC decision-maker said. “Phillips has the most natural talent and biggest upside of all of them. I wouldn’t touch Rousseau.”

Another executive: “Phillips is top 10 or 12 if you watch the tape right. I don’t get what the hype is with Rousseau. There are major concerns.”

To draft Phillips high, a team would be counting on its medical staff to rule positively on his injury history and people inside and outside the organization to reach a positive judgment on his at-times immature behavior at UCLA.

“If he can build off what he did in one year at Miami, he’ll be a legitimate NFL (defensive) end,” an AFC executive said. “He seems to have responded there after the issues he had at UCLA.”

An NFC personnel director added: “That’s LA. He was going through stuff. I got green lights on him. I’m not even blinking. He’s smart, and he’s got drive and want and grit.”

Added an AFC scout: “We’re not sure we can count on (him). … Talent-wise, he’s way better than Rousseau.”

Rousseau weighed in at 266 pounds at the pro day, which, according to some scouts, was about 30 pounds heavier than his playing weight in 2019. His workout was merely average, and now scouts have varied opinions on what his position should be.

“He’s so stiff in the lower body that I don’t see how he plays on the edge,” an AFC executive said. “You can’t help but be impressed when he walks in the room. He had like 15 sacks, but 10 of them were from the inside. I think somebody will try to fatten him up, get him in the 280s and make him play as a 3-4 (defensive) end, then stay inside as a defensive tackle on third down.”

Rousseau and Phillips were among three edge rushers, a defensive tackle and a tight end who participated in testing at The U’s pro day. Rousseau’s vertical jump of 30 inches was the worst of the five, and his broad jump of 9 feet, 7 inches was fourth. Phillips led the five with jumps of 36 inches and 10 feet, 5 inches.

“He had eight months to get ready for a pro day, and at the workout, it looks like he never jumped in his life,” said one personnel man. “He fell down on the vert and fell down on the broad. I’ve never seen a player fall down on both of those drills.”

Rousseau’s prime measurables (6-foot-6½, 266 pounds, 4.66 40 time) have few matches in recent draft history. Among the closest would be defensive end Anthony Nelson (6-foot-7, 271, 4.83), a fourth-round draft choice by the Buccaneers in 2020. Devin Taylor (6-foot-7, 273, 4.74) was the Lions’ fourth-round choice in 2013. Michael Johnson (6-foot-7, 266, 4.69) started at defensive end in Cincinnati for nine seasons after being a third-round pick in 2009 and finished with 44½ sacks.

Maybe Rousseau will be Jadeveon Clowney (6-foot-5½, 266, 4.52) from the 2014 draft, or Dion Jordan (6-foot-6, 248, 4.58) from 2013. Jevon Kearse (6-foot-5, 262, 4.45) would be the sweet ceiling, but “The Freak” was one of a kind with jumps of 40½ (vertical) and 10 feet, 10 inches (broad jump) back in 1999.

Of Kearse, who went No. 16 to the Titans and made the Pro Bowl three times, former Bears GM Jerry Angelo said before that draft, “He’s the most special athlete I think I’ve ever seen.”

“He’s so intriguing,” an AFC personnel director said of Rousseau. “He didn’t work out as great, but I’m going off what he did as a 19-year-old kid in 2019 with a number of sacks and the upside the kid has. I think Rousseau is one we’ll look back on.”

The panel of 18 scouts agreed to rank their top five edge rushers in order, with a first-place vote worth five points, a second-place vote worth four and so on. Phillips drew 11 firsts compared to four for Paye, two for Rousseau and one for Tryon.

Phillips, with 74 points, led the voting, followed by Paye (53), Rousseau (42), Tryon (23), Azeez Ojulari (22), Oweh (15), Ossai (13), Basham (11), Payton Turner (eight), Ronnie Perkins (six) and Rashad Weaver (three).

“The top eight are all very similar guys,” said one NFL decision-maker. “Bottom of the first through bottom of the second-round talent. When you get to the fourth through seventh, there are still a lot of guys leftover that have traits.”

Ranking the edge rushers

1. Jaelan Phillips, Miami (6-foot-5½, 260, 4.58, Round 1): Turned his career around with the Hurricanes in 2020.

“Everything that you want in a modern NFL pass-rushing end, he has,” said one scout. “He has rush from the edge, from inside, from nose tackle. He’s got the length, the mass, the strength and power to do it. If he had played all the way through and didn’t have the issues, absolutely he’s a top-10 player.”

His freshman season at UCLA was limited to seven games because of a high-ankle sprain. His sophomore season was limited to the first four games due to multiple concussions. Redshirted at Miami in 2019, played well last season and declared a year early.

“I was at his pro day and it was a phenomenal workout,” a second scout said. “He moved like an outside linebacker. He had some concussion issues at UCLA. Didn’t know if he was going to play football or not, or how important it was to him. Got out of there and went to Miami. Reset himself. He’s the most gifted (of the edge rushers).”

His 4.18 time in the short shuttle led the position.

“He really blew up this year,” said a third scout. “I wonder if he can sustain that. A lot of his lack of production before this year wasn’t his fault. He worked out freakishly.”

From Redlands, Calif., Phillips started six of his 11 games for the Bruins in 2017 and ’18 on teams that went 6-7 and 3-9 under Jim Mora and Chip Kelly, respectively. Finished with 86 tackles (23½ for loss) and 12½ sacks.

“He plays like he loves football,” a fourth scout said. “He’s really good in the run game and can get to the quarterback in a variety of different ways.”

2. Kwity Paye, Michigan (6-foot-2½, 261, 4.57, Round 1): Lightly recruited player from Providence, R.I. Compared by one scout to Chiefs defensive end Frank Clark, another former Michigan right defensive end.

“(I) like the way he plays,” said another scout. “It’s not anything special. He’s got good get-off and burst. There are moldable things to make him an efficient defensive end or outside linebacker. He worked out pretty well.”

Barely played as a freshman before starting four of 13 games as a sophomore. Moved into the lineup in 2019 but failed to put up impressive numbers.

“I don’t think he’ll be a bust,” another scout said. “High-effort guy. Played with violence. I’d have liked more stats, but he still was disruptive. He showed quickness off the snap. He could do it (rush with) both power and speed. Can hold the point. Has the strength (36 reps on the bench).”

Started 20 of 38 games, finishing with 100 tackles (23½ for loss) and 11½ sacks.

“He’s got a lot of things you want,” a third scout said. “Now, he is short. That’s his biggest deficiency. But his arm length (33 inches) is solid. I think his best attribute is he can really accelerate through contact.”

Was born in a refugee camp in Guinea. Came to the U.S. with his Liberian parents at 6 months.

“You see some violence, you see the jolt and snatch, you see some burst off the edge,” said a fourth scout. “I like him, but he should be better than what he is.”

3. Gregory Rousseau, Miami (6-foot-6½, 266, 4.66, Round 1): His freshman season ended after two games because of a broken ankle that required surgery. Was second in the nation with 15½ sacks in 2019 before opting out in ’20.

“He’s not explosive, but he’s a really good technician,” one scout said. “He knows how to use his hands and get off blocks. He knows angles. He’s a really smart player. He has the pass-rush knack. He just has feel for what he needs to do. He’s what you want in a full-time defensive end.”

Reminded another scout of Justin Tuck (6-foot-5, 265, 4.75), the 11-year defensive end who registered 66½ sacks.

“(Rousseau’s) production comes from interior pass rushing, a la Tuck,” the evaluator said. “He could possibly (bulk up) and be a 3-4 defensive end.”

Another scout expects him to do just that.

“He looks like an NBA power forward because of the height, the length and the range,” he said. “I think he’s going to be that 275-, 280-pound guy and be a 5-technique. He’ll be able to leverage players (stopping the run).”

His arms were 34⅜ inches and his hands were a position-high 11⅛ inches.

“Got a lot of athletic ability, but a complete finesse player. There’s no nasty to him,” said a fourth scout.

The Coconut Creek, Fla., native entered the draft with only seven career starts. Played in 15 games, finishing with 59 tackles (22½ for loss) and 15½ sacks.

“He’s a gangly athlete,” said a fifth scout. “Struggles to change direction. He’s raw.”

4. Joe Tryon, Washington (6-foot-5, 259, 4.67, Round 1 or 2): A fourth-year junior who played only two seasons after redshirting in 2017 and opting out in 2020.

“Extremely well put together,” one scout said. “He’s going to be overdrafted for what he’s actually done in his career. Somebody will take a chance on the physical traits. He’s gifted. He had (12½) sacks the last time he was on a football field. Looks the part, but (Joseph) Ossai and (Ronnie) Perkins outplayed him.”

From Renton, Wash., Tryon played from multiple alignments in his 25-game, 14-start career.

“I don’t know if he’ll ever be a dominant sack guy, but I could see him having steady six, seven (sack) years with a 10 every blue moon if his technique improves,” said a second scout. “He’s big, long and can run. He’ll probably be a DPR (designated pass rusher) early. I don’t see dominant ability, so he probably has the best chance to bust.”

Finished with 61 tackles (14½ for loss) and nine sacks.

“Love this kid,” said a third scout. “He can bend. He can drop into coverage. He doesn’t have any speed-to-power move. He’ll get stalled. But his effort is undeniable. He’s a very determined football player.”

5. Azeez Ojulari, Georgia (6-foot-2, 249, 4.62, Round 1 or 2): Suffered a torn ACL in his final game as a prep (in Marietta, Ga.) and redshirted in 2018 while rehabilitating the knee. Started 23 of 24 games for the Bulldogs the past two years before declaring as a third-year sophomore.

“He’s athletic and quick with a good get-off,” said one scout. “He can get on an edge. He runs well. Playing (every) down, the size factor could be an issue. He can be a 3-4 or a 4-3 guy.”

Played from two- and three-point stances.

“I’d probably play him as a ‘Sam’ (linebacker) on early downs and then on third down try to find ways to get him involved in the rush,” said a second scout. “Georgia always has athletes, but their rush instincts aren’t there. In the NFL, the tackles are too good just to be a good athlete.”

Finished with 67 tackles (18½ for loss) and 14 sacks.

“I think there’s some risk with him, but if you’re saying that, what’s Kwity Paye?” a third scout said. “(Ojulari) had 8½ sacks (in 2020) in the SEC, and the biggest season Kwity had was 6½ in the Big Ten.”

He’s the shortest of the top 15 edge rushers, but his arm length (34½ inches) is excellent.

“They played him at end and off the ball, and he gets beat up wherever he is,” said a fourth scout. “You love the way he plays, but he’s a little guy. His pass rush is just effort. That’s really what he’s got. I don’t have a role for him.”

6. Jayson Oweh, Penn State (6-foot-5, 257, 4.37, Round 1 or 2): “He should be a better player, but his upside is insane.”

That evaluator summed up what many of his scouting brethren have been saying about Oweh, a pro-day wunderkind but too often a nonfactor for the Nittany Lions.

“You see the workout and the flashes,” said a second scout. “He didn’t have a sack (in 2020), but Danielle Hunter had only (1½) his last year at LSU. You just don’t pass up rare (skills).”

Led edge rushers in the 40, broad jump (11 feet, 2 inches) and 3-cone (6.90). Long arms (34½ inches), small hands (9¼ inches). Played only two years of prep football in Howell, N.J.

“It’s still new to him,” a third scout said. “He doesn’t play like his test numbers, but somebody will take a shot on him. He shows back-side chase and all that. He’s just got to be more consistent at the point of attack.”

Redshirted in 2018 after playing minimally in four games. Backed up in 2019 before starting last year. In 24 games (eight starts), he finished with 63 tackles (13½ for loss) and seven sacks (five in 2019).

“You can see he’s got some talent, but he didn’t have a sack,” a fourth scout said. “Some team will take him and get burned. He’s my 11th edge rusher.”

7. Joseph Ossai, Texas (6-foot-3½, 256, 4.63, Round 2): Third-year junior, two-year starter.

“When I watch him, I see Danielle Hunter,” said one scout. “This guy plays harder than anybody in the draft. He just wears guys out by how hard he plays. He’s got explosive, wow plays. He’s got some stab and jolt at the point of attack. The backside stuff, how he chases, is incredible. On the pass rush, he shows you a lot of moves, the burst, bend. They drop him some, but that’s not really his deal.”

Born in Nigeria, he moved with his family to Houston at age 9. Played high school ball in Conroe, Texas. In 2018 and ’19, he played extensively as an off-ball linebacker before moving outside in ’20.

“He might be a 3-4 outside linebacker,” another scout said. “He is kind of tight for that. I really liked his passion for the game. He’s got legit, straight-line acceleration.”

Led the top 15 edge rushers in the vertical jump (41½).

“He’s just a guy to me,” a third scout said. “He didn’t blow it up there, and he had plenty of times to rush. I think he’s more of a DPR.”

Started 24 of 36 games, finishing with 165 tackles (30½ for loss) and 11 sacks.

“I think he’s stiff and doesn’t have a plan when he’s rushing,” said a fourth scout. “He loses his feet too much when he rushes. He is determined to get there, though.”

8. Carlos Basham Jr., Wake Forest (6-foot-3½, 274, 4.62, Round 2): Redshirted in 2016, played a lot in a rotation in ’17 and started 32 games over his last three years.

“He’s the most natural pass rusher in the draft,” said one scout. “He has underproduced for his skill level, which certainly is a concern. The competitive nature of the player needs to improve to maximize his potential. His level of talent is up there with the better guys in the draft.

“He’s a much better athlete than Za’Darius Smith was. They’re completely different, though. Za’Darius was an overachiever and Basham is an underachiever. Za’Darius has less physical ability but a much greater competitive spirit.”

Basham played defensive end in a 4-3 scheme but impressed while rushing inside at the Senior Bowl.

“He’s interesting because he can play both spots and can probably be an inside sub rusher,” said a second scout. “He’s kind of been a coast-on-talent guy. He’s been a big fish in a small pond at Wake Forest. Probably not held to the same standards a guy from Alabama would be held to.”

Arm length (32⅞) was the shortest of the top nine edge rushers. From Roanoke, Va., Basham finished with 173 tackles (35½ for loss) and 20½ sacks for Wake Forest.

“He’s an inconsistent player,” said a third scout. “More productive as a junior. His motor needs to crank up.”

9. Payton Turner, Houston (6-foot-5½, 268, no 40, Round 2 or 3): Playing college ball in his hometown, Turner backed up in 2017 before starting 27 of 28 games from 2018 through ’20.

“A little upright, a little stiff, but he may have the best motor in the draft,” one scout said. “He plays really hard and he’s really big. I just think guys like that end up being good players. He has pass-rush tools, but he doesn’t have pass-rush productivity yet.

“He can be anywhere from 275 to 300 (pounds). He’s best if you play him at about 275 coming off the edge and chasing the ball. Kind of just being big and a tone-setter.”

The 3-4 teams either see him as an outside linebacker or as a 5-technique with 25 additional pounds. The 4-3 teams view him as a left or right end.

“He didn’t stand out at the Senior Bowl,” another scout said. “He didn’t have huge fall grades, so this is a little bit of a rising sun. He’s got some rush potential, both power and speed.”

Has the long longest arms at the position (35⅜ inches).

“He’s weighed almost 290,” said a third scout. “He dropped down for some reason for the Senior Bowl (270). Has the tools to be a good NFL pass rusher. Let’s put it this way: He’s got all the material, but he wasn’t as productive as I thought he should be.”

Finished with 115 tackles (25 for loss) and 10 sacks.

10. Ronnie Perkins, Oklahoma (6-foot-2½, 253, 4.71, Round 3): An undersized third-year junior with short arms (32⅞ inches) and small hands (9 inches). Failed to impress at pro day with a pedestrian 40, a slow shuttle run and a 32-inch vertical jump.

“I think he goes mid-to-late third,” said one scout. “But he’ll be a better player than some of the guys that go before him.”

The St. Louis native started 25 of 33 games at defensive end for the Sooners.

“He is (small), but he plays extremely hard,” a second scout said. “He may be an exception to the rule. He’s pretty explosive.”

Failed an NCAA drug test in late 2019 but successfully appealed and returned after missing six games.

“Character all checks out,” a third scout said. “He’s a 100-mph, try-hard, play-with-your-hair-on-fire guy. He’s got the strength to do the cobra strike (bull rush). He’s a pain in the *** to block.”

Finished with 99 tackles (32 for loss) and 16½ sacks.

“Love the way he plays,” said a fourth scout. “There is a little bit of tightness to him. I could see people saying he’d bust because a lot of his (production) comes from his effort.”

11. Rashad Weaver, Pittsburgh (6-foot-4½, 259, 4.85, Round 3): Described by one scout as a “subtle” rusher. Missed all of 2019 with a torn anterior cruciate ligament but returned better than ever in ’20.

“He gets a lot of cleanup sacks,” said a second scout. “He has technique, but no explosion. He’s a try-hard, overachiever type. He was (productive), and I don’t know how he does it. He’s a lot like the guy last year from Boise, Curtis Weaver. He also had a knack.”

From Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Rashad Weaver started 28 of 35 games over four seasons, finishing with 110 tackles (34½ for loss) and 17 sacks.

“He’ll end up being a CEO of a business someday,” said a third scout. “He’s a great kid. Plays hard. He just doesn’t have quick feet. I think he can go to a team where he doesn’t have to be that fast and maybe be a backup as a Day 3 guy.”

12. Patrick Jones II, Pittsburgh (6-foot-4, 261, no 40, Round 3 or 4): Pulled up slightly before crossing the finish line of his 40 at pro day. Although there is no satisfactory clocking, teams estimated his speed to be in the high 4.8s. His broad jump (8 feet, 11 inches), meanwhile, was the lowest at the position.

“He’s the one who reminds me of a Za’Darius Smith,” said one scout. “Za’Darius ran 4.81. It’s a big man’s game.”

Started at left end in a four-man front, but some teams see him agile enough to stand up outside in a 3-4.

“He doesn’t play the game fast,” a second scout said. “He’s a power guy. He wants to be the best guy there. But I don’t think he’s very strong and I don’t see counter moves. He’s got to get stronger.”

From Chesapeake, Va., Jones started 24 of 48 games over four seasons after redshirting in 2016. Finished with 117 tackles (33½ for loss) and 22 sacks.

“Tries his *** off,” said a third scout. “Great kid. Got better as far as being a technician as a rusher this year. But he’s stiff. He was disappointing at the Senior Bowl. He’s a classic overachiever.”

13. Cameron Sample, Tulane (6-foot-2½, 267, 4.86, Round 3 or 4): From Snellville, Ga., he played defensive end as a three-year starter for the Green Wave. His size and athleticism make him one of the most versatile defenders in the draft.

“Kind of a ‘tweener,” said one scout. “But when it comes down to just playing football, he just makes plays. He’s too small to play inside consistently, but he’s got some quickness. I think his best position based on his body type is that Pittsburgh 3-4 outside linebacker. If I was running that defense, I could see him as a third- or fourth-round pick. If you play him on the edge, that’s his best bet.”

Posted a 37-inch vertical jump.

“He has the capacity to play in the 280s and he is strong,” a second scout said. “Good football player.”

Started 38 of 46 games, finishing with 151 tackles (21 for loss) and 10½ sacks.

14. Chris Rumph II, Duke (6-foot-3, 239, no 40, Round 4): Moved regularly with his family because his father, Chris, has been a college or NFL assistant coach since 2003. Presently, the elder Rumph is the defensive line coach for the Bears.

“The guy just never stops,” said one scout. “He gets bounced around like a pinball, but the guy has some edge rush ability. He’s a rotational defensive end (in a 4-3), or he could play in a 3-4. Pretty decent athlete, but (size) is an issue. Looks like a basketball player.”

Managed just 18 reps on the bench, the fewest by a top-15 edge rusher. After playing high school ball in Gainesville, Fla., Rumph started only as a senior for the Blue Devils, finishing with 125 tackles (34 for loss) and 17½ sacks.

“Poor man’s Leonard Floyd,” said a second scout. “Love the way the guy plays. Has amazing flexibility. He just gets in so many awkward positions and gets knocked around, but he always comes out of it. How much bigger and stronger is this guy going to get?”

15. Quincy Roche, Miami (6-foot-2½, 245, 4.68, Round 4 or 5): From Randallstown, Md., Roche stepped into a starting role at defensive end in his first season with the Hurricanes after Rousseau opted out.

“Plays hard, really instinctive, smart,” one scout said. “Knows how to play. Not a lot in his tank. He could be a really good backup for somebody for a long time.”

At Temple, he redshirted in 2016 and started 17 of 39 games from 2017 through ’19. Moved to Miami as a grad transfer and started 10 games at right end in a 4-3 defense.

“He has a lower ceiling because of physical limitations,” a second scout said.

His production was extraordinary. In 49 games (27 starts) for the Owls and Hurricanes, he had 182 tackles (54 for loss) and 30½ sacks.

“(Christian) Darrisaw just ate this guy up,” a third scout said of the Virginia Tech left tackle. “Excellent dip and bend at the corner. He has a great first step. Needs to play more physical against the run.”

Other top edge rushers: Jordan Smith, Alabama-Birmingham; Elerson Smith, Northern Iowa; Ade Ogundeji, Notre Dame; Janarius Robinson, Florida State; Daelin Hayes, Notre Dame; Charles Snowden, Virginia; Jonathon Cooper, Ohio State; Shaka Toney, Penn State; Malcolm Koonce, Buffalo; Joshua Kaindoh, Florida State; Hamilcar Rashed Jr., Oregon State; William Bradley-King, Baylor; Tarron Jackson, Coastal Carolina; Wyatt Hubert, Kansas State.

The Skinny

Unsung hero

Elerson Smith, Northern Iowa: One evaluator said Smith (6-foot-6, 252, 4.75), who has a 41½-inch vertical jump, has the ability to bend around the corner much like Bryce Paup (6-foot-4, 245, 5.01) did for the Packers, Bills, Jaguars and Vikings. Paup came out of UNI as a sixth-round pick in 1990 and went on to make four straight Pro Bowls and notch 75 sacks. Smith had 28 sacks in three years, including 14 in 2019, but lost the ’20 season when the Missouri Valley Conference canceled its season. Smith is much better rushing the passer than playing the run.

Scouts’ nightmare

Janarius Robinson, Florida State: His height/weight/speed numbers (6-foot-5, 262, 4.69) are top-notch. So is his arm length (35¼) and hand size (10⅞). But it just didn’t happen for him in Tallahassee: 42 games, 28 starts, eight sacks. Scouts appreciate his effort and sincerity. Some team will seek to unlock his potential.

Scout to remember

Jim Parmer: A star halfback at Oklahoma State in the mid-1940s, Parmer backed up Hall of Famer Steve Van Buren on the Eagles’ championship teams of 1948 and ’49. After a nine-year playing career in Philadelphia, he coached at Texas Tech before joining the BLESTO combine as a scout in 1967. That eight-year stint was followed by about two decades as a regional scout for the Bears. Working under George Halas, Jim Finks and Bill Tobin, Parmer was a no-nonsense evaluator of college talent. His legacy lives on in grandson Jeff Ireland, the Saints’ assistant general manager. Parmer, a native of Mangum, Okla., died in 2005 in Lubbock, Texas. He was 79.

Quote to note

AFC personnel executive: “In college, if you’re a really good athlete, you can get away clean. People can’t block you. But in the NFL, even Aaron Donald, people get in front of him. He just has the strength and athletic ability to run through guys. You don’t get many sacks in the NFL just by going clean to the quarterback. You’ve got to fight through contact, play through bodies.”

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 minute ago, falcons007 said:

Yeah. I saw that but no description of him in the rankings. Smith in reality may be 2-3 round pick compared to other guys. 

Seems like Pees and the defensive coaches are going to earn their paychecks with this draft class if we pick up an edge player in any of the rounds.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have very similar rankings to this. Really glad to see Rousseau getting some love again. I think people are forgetting about him, but he is a beast. Jayson Oweh deserves that slot, and I don't understand the 1st round hype with him. He has the ability to be good, but he just doesn't have "it" right now, and there's no way I am taking a project in the first. I'm not getting burned again by a workout warrior.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Something about this year's crop of linemen (on both sides) make me hesitant to pick either before the 4th round. 

I don't buy the players listed as the top edge... None of them really dominated in my opinion and a lot of their draft stocks are based on projection than college performance. 

Same with O line... Who did Sewell ice to be considered a top 5 pick? 

I wouldn't be shocked if the best defensive player from this draft was picked in the 4th or 5th round. 

Feels like a draft filled with Takks and Vics

Edited by ramonezy
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...