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2012 3-4 DE Rankings

April 18, 2012

3-4 Defensive End

Prototype in the NFL: JJ Watts

Best In Class

Best Frame: Taylor Thompson                         Best Quickness: Trevor Guyton

Best Run Stopper: Cameron Jordan                  Best Motor: Mike Martin

Best Pass Rusher: Derek Wolfe                        Best Mean Streak: Mike Martin

Best Burst: Derek Wolfe                                    Best Technician: Billy Winn

1. Mike Martin Michigan #68 6’1 3/8 306 Sr.

Stats: Big 10

Year

Tackles

Sack

TFL

QBH

FF

INT

TD

2011 

64 

3.5 

2010 

 37

2.5 

2009 

51 

8.5 

2008 

20 

4.5 

Combine: HS wrestler. 10 yd split of 1.69 with an overall of 4.88 that both were outstanding for a DT. 2nd team Big 10. Fast and great hustle in double bag drill-his body doesn’t have an ounce of fat on it. Great bend and quickness in triple bag drill-best of DTs.

HGT

WGT

Arms

Hands

40

Reps

Vert

Broad

Shuttle

3 Cone

1 yr %

6013

306

32.25

9.13

4.88

36

33.5

905

4.25

7.19

90.4

Notes: Very short, compact player. Was the best player on a terrible defense in ’10 (2.5 sacks, 6 TFL). In the ’10 Gator Bowl vs. Mississippi St. he played against JC Brignone: beat JC and had tackle on outside run showing good power and speed (7:52 1st). I was very impressed with his base, strength, motor, and technical ability at the NT position. He won’t be a star due to his lack of height but looks like a future starter at DT or NT 1/15/11. In the 2011 Virginia Tech game he went up against RG Jaymes Brooks and rarely got a strong push vs. him-though did get penetration at times and wasn’t pushed back either, good quickness and push on C/RG, good quickness on zone blitz dropping into coverage (1:14 1st), good quickness rushing then getting 5 yd tackle trailing QB on scramble-elite quickness for a DT which makes me think that 3-4 DE is his ideal spot so he can anchor but also trail tackle, good push getting C 2 yds in backfield at snap, stacked and shed Brooks for 2 yd tackle on inside run, good stack and shed of C for 2 yd tackle on inside run, good 1 yd TFL wading through line to get scrambling QB two holes down-very quick for a DT. I continue to like Martin as he isn’t the biggest or strongest but rarely gets pushed out of his hole and has underrated speed in trailing plays. I think he will be a solid 4-3 two gap DT or a good 3-4 DE. 4th round 1/5/12. Senior Bowl: Day 1: 1×1: Couldn’t get edge vs. C Mike Brewster but bull rushed and fought to get him into cone for rather quick win (+3), slightly gained edge vs. Mike and had superior strength keeping it and pressing for 3 sec win (+4). Good battle vs. Brewster unable to get edge but battled and nearly got to cone on bull rush for slight loss (-2), good swim move getting outside edge for win (+4). 11×11: Good push vs. C and RG double team still getting them backwards. Day 2: 1×1: Good bull rush vs. Brewster getting him back then semi got edge and wrestled to cone and grabbing it throwing it in the air as he knew he had won (+3). Day 3: 1×1: Beat Bergstrom on outside edge with quick move then arm battle to turn corner to cone for quick, decisive win (+4). No movement on initial bull vs. C Rishaw Johnson but reacted well and swim moved him for win (+3). 2011 Senior Bowl Game: He got the start at DT, quick down block by RG Philip Blake got him initially blocked on inside run but a great spin move freed him and nearly got 5 yd tackle-great quickness for a DT, no rush in 4 sec vs. C Ben Jones, no rush vs. Jones, knocked Jones back and shed him on inside run but RB went to other hole avoiding TFL, great trail on run away getting off block and dive tackling him after 4 yds! (7:48 1st), stacked Jones then disengaged for no gain tackle on run at him, no rush and only small push vs. RG James Brown, no rush vs. C William Vlachos, no rush vs. Vlachos, great bull rush blowing through LG Will Blackwell and getting around Jones for pressure (4:55 3rd), good pass rush vs. Vlachos getting edge and being held otherwise would have been pressure or sack-not called. Out of the 10 DTs at the Senior Bowl he was #4 (Ta’amu, Howard, Reyes, Martin, Thompson, Wolfe, Winn, Randle, Jerrod-Eddie, Powell) as he showed elite toughness, strength, and continued to show off his underrated speed and quickness which are his best attributes to me.

Tape: 2011: Notre Dame,Michigan St.,Ohio St.,Virginia Tech

Overall: Mike is one of those players that is a fan favorite, lunch pail type player who exudes toughness and hustle making him worth more than his stats show. He’s had a very good offseason having a highly publicized Senior Bowl as his one on one battles with Big Ten rival Michael Brewster were the talk of the event yet I continue to think he’s a bit misunderstood as a player. I think he would be a capable two gap plugging type DT yet his biggest asset is his surprising quickness and speed which allows him to trail a player better than almost any DT I’ve graded. He lacks the long arms or thin body that would allow his quickness to be utilized as a one gap penetrating tackle and lacks the huge frame that would make him a great plugging NT for a 3-4 so his best position would actually be as a 3-4 DE who can hold set the edge when run at him or trail tackle when run away from him. When watching him workout at the Combine I was struck by just how thick he was without having really any fat in him. As a space eating DT that svelte physique would be wasted as often times bigger is better at that position whether it’s fat or muscle yet as a moving 3-4 DE it would accentuate his rare speed and mobility for a man his size. I really think that Martin could be one of the better 3-4 DEs in the league if given a chance to play the position and will only be an average DT if placed in a 4-3 no matter whether he’s a one gap or two gap player. Hopefully he finds the right scheme b/c it would be a match made in heaven. Early 3rd round as my #1 3-4 DE 4/2/12.

2. Derek Wolfe Cincinnati #95 6’5 1/8 295 Sr.

Stats: Big East

Year

Tackles

Sack

TFL

QBH

FF

INT

TD

2011

70

9.5

21.5

6

2

0

0

2010

48

3

6.5

2

0

0

0

2009

41

5

8

1

1

0

0

2008

3

1

1

0

0

0

0

Combine: Long armed and long legged. Solid 40 yd (5.01) with a good 10 yd split (1.71). Solid in change of direction drill. Big East DPOY in 2011. Very good for a DT in multi bag drill-average for DE. Great bend for a DT in double bag drill. Solid in double bag drill. Good in triple bag drill.    

HGT

WGT

Arms

Hands

40

Reps

Vert

Broad

Shuttle

3 Cone

1 yr %

6051

295

32.5

10.75

5.01

33

33.5

900

4.44

7.26

99.2

Notes: In the 2011 Vanderbilt game he had good stack of OG but missed tackle of RB in his hole allowing 7 yd TD up the middle, good no gain tackle pushing back RG right into RB, very next play stacked and shed OL for a 1 yd TFL on inside run-can’t run his way at all (3:10 1st), no stat on play but his quick penetration forced immediate cutback by RB in backfield, good 2 yd tackle stacking OL well, nice diving TFL on end around after getting solid penetration despite cut block (9:08 3rd), great instincts wading through line for 2 yd tackle two holes away. He really surprised me in this game as he showed up far more often looking nearly unblockeable on run downs. He has solid quickness and speed but his best attribute is his instincts and his technique which allows him to consistently stack and shed OL. Since it was Vanderbilt I want to see him in an All-Star even to make sure those attributes translate but if so he’s a 4th, especially b/c he has great size at 6’5 300 with the potential to add on pounds 1/3/12. Senior Bowl: Day 1: 1×1: Jumped offsides vs OG Kevin Seitler, not that quick off snap vs. Seitler but battled to eventually slightly win edge though a bit past QB (+1). 11×11: Blocked easily by Seitler. Day 2: 1×1: Good bull rush against OG Johnnie Troutman who had to reanchor 3 times and well past cone on final one for win (+2). Lined at DE and surprisingly won edge vs. OT Senio Kelemente but pancaked when tried to bend toward QB for very small loss (-1). Day 3: 1×1: Slightly got edge vs. OT Tony Bergstrom then did a nice shoulder dip to get around him but only gets small win b/c went well past cone-very nice bend for a possible DT (+2). Same thing this time vs. OT Mitchell Schwartz as he slightly got edge and did shoulder dip but went past cone so only a slight win (+2). 11×11: Good quickness making RB Isaiah Pead whiff on pass block for sack. 2011 Senior Bowl Game: Good initial push vs. TE Ladarius Green then shed him but TFL already occurred by teammate, just pancaked RT Jeff Allen on initial push helping cause ruined play ended in sack (3:16 1st), couldn’t get edge vs. Allen but was off balance and tossed him aside to get inside rush land and level QB as he threw for INT (2:30 1st), no rush on 3 step vs. Allen, good job meeting RB in hole and throwing him backwards-got first but showed great strength, good push vs. Allen getting him back 3 yds immediately but was 3 step, couldn’t get edge and not much rush but again pushed allen back a few yards, small rush pushing RT Zebrie Sanders back and pushing him down near end of play, no rush and much smaller push vs. Sanders, good push getting Sanders close to QB, knocked down by C Philip Blake on rush, blocked well by Blake but had great technique disengaging and making 5 yd tackle on RB in hole as he came by, no rush in 3 sec vs. Blake but won outside edge at end when ball already thrown-always battling, no rush in 5 sec in battle with Blake-definitely inferior strength wise to him, no rush early vs. Blake yet again got free late and got 4-5 sec pressure up middle, beat Blackwell on outside edge and got quickly to QB but Blackwell just was able to steer him past QB avoiding sack. Out of the 10 DTs at the Senior Bowl he was #6 (Ta’amu, Howard, Reyes, Martin, Thompson, Wolfe, Winn, Randle, Jerrod-Eddie, Powell) and actually neck and neck with Thompson for the 5th spot as he made a lot of plays and showed an intriguing blend of size, strength, and quickness often getting the edge on OTs as a true DE which I didn’t think he could do. He’s arguably the most versatile DL in this draft as he could play one gap DT, 3-4 DE, or SDE in a 4-3 easily and two gap DT isn’t out of the question either.

Tape: 2011:Rutgers, Vanderbilt, Senior Bowl Practices and Game

Overall: I have to admit Derek surprised me this offseason as I saw a tall, long DT who played with great technique and racked up elite numbers (9.5 sacks, 21.5 TFL) yet whose athleticism I questioned a bit and I labeled him as a bigger Brett Roy but someone who probably would just be a situational pass rushing DT. Yet he’s proved me wrong as he went to the Senior Bowl and not only looked like he belonged but showed himself to be one of the most versatile DL in this draft. Most of the week he lined up as a DE in a 4-3 and regularly won the edge on some of the best OTs in this draft. That surprised me as the fact that his burst allows him to play a legit SDE in a 4-3 means he can play that position as well as a one gap DT like he played at Cincinatti or a hybrid of the two as a 3-4 DE. It’s rare to find a 6’5 295 DL with that versatility and I think it could sneak him into the 2nd round as teams love to mix and match their DL to exploit certain matchups. Yet not only is he tall, quick, and long but he’s one of the best technicians in this draft making his impressive athleticism that much more tempting. Going into the offseason he had a 4th round grade that I expected to get worse once he proved that he wasn’t strong or athletic enough to be a full time starter yet he aced both the Senior Bowl and the Combine and now looks like a future starter at any number of spots on the DL. I moved him to 3-4 DE as I think that’s his best spot and am giving him a 3rd round grade as my #2 3-4 DE 4/2/12.

3. Trevor GuytonCal 6’2 5/8 285 Sr.

Stats: Pac-12

Year

Tackles

Sack

TFL

QBH

FF

INT

TD

2011 

46 

13 

2010 

29 

4.5 

8.5 

2009 

15 

4.5 

2008 

Combine: 2nd team Pac 12 in 2011. Solid in multi bag drill. Solid in double dummy drill. Poor bend but showed real long arms in triple dummy drill. Below average in direction cone drill.

HGT

WGT

Arms

Hands

40

Reps

Vert

Broad

Shuttle

3 Cone

1 yr %

6025

285

33

10.25

5.07

 

31

809

4.53

7.45

73.1

Notes: In the 2011 Stanford game he was landed on by other players on a run play and limped off field midway through 1st, dropped in zone blitz and showed good versatility by walloping TE going across the middle for 6 yds (9:32 2nd), very good run stuff on 3rd and 1 getting low vs. TE and shooting hard into the line and scrambling forward yet run was away from him, beat LT Jonathan Martin to edge and going for sack but thrown quickly (8:46 2nd), quick off edge getting around TE and nearly tackling RB with one hand missing him by inches on his diving attempt, big hit on RB as he was falling down, just a wrecking ball moving OG then pushing straight through RB to pressure QB (15:00 4th), pushed RT way back in backfield then went around pile to grab RB and throw him down hard for TFL (10:45 4th). A very physical, tweener type who makes the most sense as a 3-4 DE. Has a good burst, quickness, and motor but probably isn’t fast enough to be a pure 4-3 DE. He doesn’t fit all schemes but I really was intrigued by him as he has very good athleticism for a guy his size and strength. In the 2011 Texas game he had a great TFL shooting through OL and throwing RB down on toss sweep for -4 yds (12:35 1st), strong push on TE who then released for 30 yd gain but showed good hustle plowing into him at end of play for hard hit, good hustle but average speed chasing QB rolling away from him-he has great strength and good short area burst but is definitely a 3-4 DE as he won’t chase down many plays, good rush pushing off OL and getting 3.5 sec sack throwing him in end zone but not called safety and out at 1 yd line (2:52 3rd).

Tape: 2011: USC,Stanford,ArizonaSt.,Texas

Overall: Trevor is a future 3-4 DE with good quickness, burst, and movement skills that will be good against the run but even better against the pass as he’s a bit undersized at 6’2 5/8 but showed good penetration skills on film that makes me think he can overcome his lack of an ideal frame for a 3-4 DE. In fact some scouts might argue his best fit is as a 4-3 one gap DT and I wouldn’t be adverse to that but still think 3-4 DE will be a more natural spot for him. In numerous games the past two years Trevor has impressed me with his borderline elite combination of strength, technique, and quickness while putting up to notch numbers (10.5 sacks, 21.5 TFL, 2 FF in ’10-’11) in a top 4 conference. He’s a real sleeper to me as if he was 2 inches taller or 20 lbs heavier I would be talking about him as a possible 2nd rounder as he stacked and shed with the best of them yet also showed pass rush skills. I’m still worried about his smaller frame but think he could be a mid round pick who surprises people by how effective he is in rushing the passer as either a one gap DT in a 4-3 or as a 3-4 DE. Early 4th round as my #3 3-4 DE 4/6/12.

4. Malik Jackson Tennessee #97 6’4 ¾ 284 Sr.

Stats: SEC

Year

Tackles

Sack

TFL

QBH

FF

INT

TD

2011

56 

2.5 

11 

10 

2010 

48 

11 

2009 

18 

3.5 

3.5 

2008 

Combine: Very tall guy with long arms and big biceps but also a big belly which was surprising. Looks and plays like a 5 technique or 4-3 SDE as he has some pass rush but it’s more of a power rush than a speed one. Had a 1.69 10 yd split. 2nd team SEC in 2011. Solid in multi bag drill-good for his size. Tight hipped in double dummy drill. Tight but okay in double dummy drill. Long armed with better bend then I expected in triple dummy drill. Underrated in direction cone drill-loose ankles.

HGT

WGT

Arms

Hands

40

Reps

Vert

Broad

Shuttle

3 Cone

1 yr %

6046

284

33.75

9

4.91

25

28

809

4.41

7.38

61.3

Notes: Is undersized for a DT yet shows no inferiority in strength vs. OL as he battles with the best of them. In the 2011 Georgia game I noticed him numerous times getting off blocks from OL to make tackles on running plays. Had a good TFL stacking and shedding LG on 3rd and 10 forcing punt (6:21 4th). He was incredibly dominant in the 2011 Arkansas game despite his team getting blown out as he has great quickness, strength, and mobility for a guy his size. His frame is elite as he is 6’5 270 and doesn’t seem to have an ounce of fat on him. I don’t think his burst is good enough to be a full time DE so his position at the next level will probably be as an under tackle in a one gape scheme. In the 2011 Florida game he avoided an OL block and hit RB Chris Rainey low for TFL 99:00 3rd), good trail on Rainey who bounced run outside but unfortunately he grabbed his facemask for personal foul (12:45 4th). Late add to the roster. Senior Bowl: Day 3: 1×1: Great bull rush getting low and plowing through and pancaking OT Matt McCants for big win-only not a 5 b/c he fell somewhat too (+4). Good job fighting for edge and finally winning it vs. OG Will Blackwell dipping shoulder well to turn corner for win (+3). Went super low on bull rush again this time vs. McCants and got to cone and both fell down again for win (+3). Only small push vs. OT Cordy Glenn and couldn’t get edge for loss (-3). 11×11: Blocked well initially by McCants but shed him and got 4 sec pressure, couldn’t get off block vs. McCants on run play. 2011 Senior Bowl Game: No rush in 3 sec vs. RT Mitchell Schwartz, gained edge vs. Schwartz getting hit on QB at 4 right after he threw ball that looked very bad but QB bounced right back up-looked like he collapsed a leg, no rush in 3 sec vs. Schwartz, no rush vs. LT Mike Adams, great move getting inside edge vs. Schwartz immediately and rushing to QB for very quick pressure and dump off (0:45 2nd), great job not biting on naked bootleg to be right in QB’s face when he turned around to get batted ball (0:37 2nd), got edge vs. LT Senio Kelemente (hard to do) but ball dumped off quickly, walled outside by Kelemente on run play right at him allowing big run. 5th round with upside potential.

Tape: 2011:Florida,Georgia, LSU

Overall: Malik is a player that has been low on scouts radar this year since he played for aTennessee team that had its share of blowouts but who actually had a very good season. He’s a tweener DE/DT at basically 6’5 285 and I think he could play left DE in a 4-3 or one gap DT in a 4-3 but his best position probably is as a 3-4 DE as he’s stronger than quicker and his stack and shed skills are very impressive. He’s another player that I bet would be talked about as a 2nd or 3rd rounder if he played for LSU orAlabama as he’s a big, strong, fiery guy who can really impact a game. His stock went to a new level after his Senior Bowl performance where he lined up solely at DE and won the edge on top OTs more often than I thought he would be able to. It just proved his versatility in my eyes and opened up the possibility of him as a 4-3 left DE which I previously thought wasn’t an option. In the end I’m giving him a 4th round grade as my #4 3-4 DE as he’s a big time sleeper who has a motor, great strength, and enough quickness to threaten the edge on an OT 4/5/12.

5. Billy Winn Boise St. #90 6’3 ¾ 294 Sr.

Comparison: Poor man’s Cameron Heyward

Stats: MWC

Year

Tackles

Sack

TFL

QBH

FF

INT

TD

2011 

33 

2010

29 

5.5 

10.5 

2009 

44 

12.5 

2008 

27 

2.5 

6.5 

Combine: Slipped in 40 for false start. Had 1.78 10 yd which was average for a DT. Quick in change of direction drill. 2nd team MWC in 2011. Below average nearly falling in multi bag drill. Tight but solid in double bag drill. Very fast though didn’t bend that well in triple bag drill.

HGT

WGT

Arms

Hands

40

Reps

Vert

Broad

Shuttle

3 Cone

1 yr %

6036

294

32.5

9

5.00

24

27

811

4.44

7.37

68.3

Notes: Big frame with an NFL look to him. Plays 3-4 DE for them at times and even lines up at DE in their 4-3 as they are a multi formation D. In the 2011 Georgia game he was too quick for LG and LT Cordy Glenn getting tackle on RB for no gain, way too quick for RG to block him being in the backfield immediately (0:34 1st), took stunt outside pushing right through Glenn’s block for 5 sec sack and big hit on QB Aaron Murray (5:33 3rd), great penetration forcing RB Isaiah Crowell to cut in backfield ruining the run play. In the 2011 Arizona St. game he had solid swim move to get edge vs. RT but ball thrown quickly, very good bull rush of LG pushing him 4 yds in backfield forcing RB to cut outside and bringing him down with one paw for TFL (12:00 2nd), solid coverage sack getting QB as he stepped up to scramble after 5 sec (13:21 3rd), good tackle for 1 yd gain on inside run. Senior Bowl: Day 1: 1×1: Great initial punch vs. OG Johnnie Troutman knocking him back and nearly pancaking him but he reanchored and held him to a feisty draw (0), won outside edge vs. Troutman on initial move and pressed it forcing hold around his neck for win (+3). Day 2: 1×1: Pushed OG Tony Bergstrom back slowly and near cone but not enough, settling for small loss (-2). Had quick win vs. Winn who attacked but fell down immediately (could argue pancaked, could argue tripped so just gave him a +3). 11×11: Good shed of Troutman then diving for TFL. Day 3: 1×1: Couldn’t get edge vs. OG Keleche Osemele who then got a hold of him and pancaked him for embarrassing loss (-5). 2011 Senior Bowl Game: No rush vs. RG Philip Blake, good initial burst getting outside edge vs. RG James Brown but 3 step drop so no time for pressure, run blocked well by Brown who got him on wheels away from play, again got outside edge vs. Brown and got pressure and almost batted ball on 3 step drop-very tough to affect a 3 step but he did, got outside edge vs. Brown again but pushed away from QB for just small pressure, little push and couldn’t disengage from RT Zebrie Sanders on inside run, disengaged on off tackle at him and made tackle-albeit 5 yds downfield, couldn’t get edge on Sanders but sort of held, no rush in 5 sec vs. LT Cordy Glenn, no rush in 4 vs. Glenn, got edge vs. Sanders and dipped shoulder but went too wide and well past QB. Out of the 10 DTs at the Senior Bowl he was #7 (Ta’amu, Howard, Reyes, Martin, Thompson, Wolfe, Winn, Randle, Jerrod-Eddie, Powell) but a clear step above the bottom 3 as he showed a lack of playmaking skills but was at least good at plugging a hole unlike the bottom DTs.

Tape: 2011:Georgia,Arizona St., TCU, Senior Bowl Practice and Game

Overall: Winn is a player that seems to have been around forever and possibly should have left school early as his grade has slowly dropped each of the past few years. He probably peaked in 2009 when he had a career high in tackles (44), sacks (6), and TFL (12.5) which would have caused most scouts to salivate thinking of how much better he would be in a few years. Yet a few years later there is something missing with him as he’s got an NFL body (6’3 3/4 296) and looks pretty athletic on film but just doesn’t seem to make many plays and at times at the Senior Bowl was dominated. He’s a tweener in that he isn’t great at occupying blockers in a 2 gap scheme but isn’t quite athletic enough to be a dominating one gap DT. That’s why I think his best spot will be as a 3-4 DE as he does have a nice blend of size, strength, and quickness with his position accentuating the blend instead of putting light to the fact that he does nothing really well. I suspect Billy will be nothing more than an average starter at either 3-4 DE or 4-3 DT yet a team will be happy to know that he’s a hard worker, experienced, and a natural leader who was a key player on numerous top Boise St. defenses. 4th round as my #5 3-4 DE 4/2/12.

6. Taylor Thompson SMU #8 6’6 1/8 266 Sr.

Stats: C-USA

Year

Tackles

Sack

TFL

QBH

FF

INT

TD

2011

42

7

8.5

2

4

0

0

2010

33

5.5

6.5

3

1

0

0

2009

40

5.5

6

6

0

0

0

2008

23

0

1.5

1

0

0

0

Pro Day: 4/14/12

HGT

WGT

Arms

Hands

40

Reps

Vert

Broad

Shuttle

3 Cone

1 yr %

6061

266

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Notes: First team C-USA in 2010 and 2011! Isn’t just skinny but is very skinny for 287 lbs and could easily add 20 lbs of muscle while keeping his elite athleticism. In the 2011 Pittsburgh game he had a nice sack, his height and frame are very NFL like and I think he could be a good fit as a 3-4 DE, elite speed for his size trailing play then shoved TE to the ground at the end showing strength, very good closing speed after shedding RT forcing throw away on rollout-injured QB on hit (3:10 2nd), rarely got edge vs. RT so definitely not a SDE, elite stunt inside bull rushing and pancaking OG Lucas Nix (future drafted player) for 3.5 sec sack (0:45 2nd). He really caught my eye as a tall, big, fast DL who seems miscast as a 4-3 DE yet was productive even in that role with 9 sack in 2011. He has the frame to add 20 lbs and could very soon be a 6’6 310 lb guy with long arms and good speed who is an absolute freak as a 3-4 DE or 4-3 DT. I would be surprised if he’s drafted but he has elite potential and is a classic late round project. 6th round 1/7/12. Word is he doesn’t breathe football and doesn’t put in the amount of work needed in the offseason. Is a big outdoors guy. Gil Brandt watched his workout and, though he played DE in college, he worked out as a TE (played WR in High School) and caught the ball extremely well. Brandt now has him as a late 3rd/early 4th round developmental TE who makes his Top 100.

Tape: 2011:Texas A&M,Pittsburgh

Overall: Taylor was an interesting late round project type I had as a 3-4 DE who just recently blew up due to his elite pro day workout and now is projected by some as a 4-3 DE or even a TE. No matter where a team decides to play him they’ll be getting a tall, long armed player with rare movement skills to go along with raw potential that has barely been tapped. What excites me the most about Thompson though is that he’s a project with 1st round measurables who also was a productive player the past 3 years (138 tackles, 18 sacks, 21 TFL, 5 FF) earning 1st team C-USA in 2010 and 2011. I love prospects who have barely begun to realize their immense potential yet already are productive players as it allows a team to have a quality backup or average starter with upside instead of a guy who will have to sit on the bench for awhile as a team waits on his upside to be developed. I still contend that his best spot is as a 3-4 DE and his frame (6’5 7/8) could easily get up to the 300 lb range yet since he decided to cut weight (dropped 28 lbs from his listed playing weight of 287 to his pro day weight of 259) and numerous scouts said he looked fluid catching the ball in drills I might be able to be convinced to try him at TE or even as a 4-3 DE initially. Whether as a #3 TE, backup 4-3 DE, or backup 3-4 DE I really like Taylor as a mid to late round freak athlete project as he’s such a natural athlete that he was able to be a very productive player for SMU despite his rawness and I think if the light ever comes on for the kid he could be elite at some position. 5th round as my #6 3-4 DE though many will have him as a TE 4/5/12.

7. Frank Alexander Oklahoma #84 6’4 270 Sr.

Stats: Big 12

Year

Tackles

Sack

TFL

QBH

FF

INT

TD

2011

54

8.5

19

7

3

1

0

2010

39

7.5

13.5

1

1

0

0

2009

23

1.5

7

7

1

0

0

2008

26

3.5

5

0

1

0

0

Combine:

HGT

WGT

Arms

Hands

40

Reps

Vert

Broad

Shuttle

3 Cone

1 yr %

6040

270

35

9.75

 

 

 

 

 

 

48.5

Notes: He loves frosted flakes. Is a bit top heavy with very thin legs. In the 2011 Oklahoma St. game he went up against LT Levy Adcock, kept edge on short yardage run diving in for gang tackle to force punt, good job staying inside on TE who tried to block him outside then crashing down to make tackle on inside run for 2 yds-not noticeable as a pass rusher but is a good run stopper, dropped into coverage and looked solid doing it-probably a 3-4 OLB. In the 2011 Baylor game he lined up as DE in a 3-4 and had a great pass rush splitting LT and LG for 4 sec sack (7:18 1st). In the 2011 Texas game he went unblocked on designed QB run for easy TFL, great quickness getting into backfield to disrupt misdirection run missing TFL but teammates cleaned up, great 3 sec sack from DT spot on 3rd and long going unblocked to RB who he just shed away (7:00 2nd), good inside rush vs. LT pushing OT upfield to create hole forcing QB to scramble away, good rush from DT spot getting 5 sec sack and FF that was returned for a TD, good rush from DT hitting QB as he threw it but PF as he went high to QBs head, great hustle late in garbage time still being in there and attacking getting 5 sec coverage sack on QB to end the game (0:32 4th). In the 2011 Florida St. game he got pushed back 5 yds by LT Andrew Datko on run play, no rush in 4 sec vs. Datko, beat Datko on swim move for 4 sec sack (14:20 4th). In the 2011 Iowa game he went against stud LT Riley Reiff: No rush on 6 sec rush, very good pbu dropping into coverage and tipping ball as LB in middle zone on slant (6:50 1st), pushed Reiff back a bit on bull rush but ball thrown quickly, good job reading inside run and wading through staying inside of Reiff’s block to help on tackle, no rush on 4 sec, good speed getting around TE immediately to get 3 yd tackle on inside run-very impressive as he came from a wide angle, good rush jarring Reiff back a bit getting inside rush lane and diving at QBs feet as he threw for pressure-sad though that a pressure is the best he can get against Reiff after 1 half, very quick inside move getting by Reiff nearly untouched but was quick throw and rollout to other side (11:45 3rd). He was dominated the entire game by Reiff and his lack of impact was even more apparent when the occasional time he went against a TE he made plays. It reinforces my opinion of him as he is a tall, strong run defender who gets no real pass rush against quality NFL caliber OTs and will be a backup, rotational player as a SDE. His best value will be if he can become a quality pass rushing DT so he can be a SDE on run downs and a pass rushing DT on pass downs. Still though that is a bit of a stretch and for now he comes in as a highly productive collegiate without much upside as an NFL player. 6th round 12/31/11.

Tape: 2011: Florida St., Texas, Oklahoma St., Iowa

Overall: Frank has been an easy grade for me for quite awhile as his lack of burst was always extremely noticeable to me on film and he just didn’t fit as a pass rushing 4-3 DE. I had him downgraded to a late round flier all year yet he something clicked when he measured in at the Combine as at 6’4 275 with room on his frame to add weight he now can be looked at as a 3-4 DE prospect. This changes everything as his ’35 arms, his good strength as a DE, and his prolific TFL numbers (44.5!) now won’t go to waste as a 4-3 DE who can’t get the edge against OTs but will be used perfectly as a 3-4 DE who occupies blockers and battles to split the OT/OG gap which his tape shows he does relatively well. I still think he lacks the overall talent to be anything great in the NFL but he now looks like he could have a role in the NFL and that’s a huge difference in grade. Frank is a future 3-4 DE who only needs to bulk up 15 lbs to get into the 285 lb range that is the norm and I think his skill set should make him a solid starter at that spot. 5th round as my #7 3-4 DE 4/1/12.

8. Markus Kuhn North Carolina St. 6’4 ¾ 299 Sr.

Stats: ACC

Year

Tackles

Sack

TFL

QBH

FF

INT

TD

2011

45

4.5

9.5

3

0

0

0

2010

17

0

1.5

0

0

0

0

2009

20

2

3

1

1

0

0

2008

33

2

4.5

1

3

0

0

Combine: Looked slow but was extremely agile for a 300 lb guy in backpedal drill. Great for his size in multi bag drill-Mayock gushed about Cox and he should but Kuhn has been spectacular and neck and neck for best DT in these drills so far. Good in double dummy drill. Great bend again in double dummy drill. Quick with great bend in triple dummy drill. Loose hips and ankles again but tripped a bit-didn’t hit the ground- in direction cone drill.

HGT

WGT

Arms

Hands

40

Reps

Vert

Broad

Shuttle

3 Cone

1 yr %

6046

299

32.5

10.5

4.89

28

34.5

904

4.41

7.43

100

Notes: Never saw him on film in 2011. He’ll be 26 as a rookie. Played prep ball for 4 years inGermany as a LB and DL earningROY and All-Star berths all 4 years.

Tape: None

Overall: Kuhn grew up in Germany and has a rawness to him due to his lack of playing experience. I watched 1 North Carolina St. game yet failed to notice him in it but still am giving him a drafteable grade after his elite Combine as he put up spectacular numbers (4.89 40, 34.5 vert, and 9’4 broad for a 299 lb is 1st round caliber) and was elite in the position drills showing spectacular bend for his size. Overall it can be argued that he, not Poe, had the best Combine performance as he was neck and neck with Fletcher Cox for best DT in the position drills and showed elite speed and explosion in the measurements. A late round project with elite upside who I admit I don’t know much about. 6th round as my #8 3-4 DE 4/7/12.

9. Tony Jerod-EddieTexas A&M 6’4 305 Sr.

Stats: Big 12

Year

Tackles

Sack

TFL

QBH

FF

INT

TD

2011

55 

2010 

49 

2.5 

2009 

23 

2008 

19 

Pro Day: 3/7/12

HGT

WGT

Arms

Hands

40

Reps

Vert

Broad

Shuttle

3 Cone

1 yr %

6040

305

 

 

5.15

29

27

807

4.54

7.77

 

Notes: Noticed him a few times in the first half vs. Oklahoma St. with pressure from inside. In the 2011 SMU game had a 4 sec sack from 5 technique position pushing OG back and continuing to QB (13:40 1st), had a 5 sec sack from the 5 technique with it again being a coverage and hustle sack and not really anything too special (5:41 2nd), and a good 3.5 sec sack on stunt inside from 7 technique showing pretty solid quickness (10:57 4th). Senior Bowl: Day 2: 1×1: Bull rushed C William Vlachos back 5 yds in 3 sec for easy win (+4). Couldn’t get edge as DE vs. OT James Brown then got nowhere with spin move back inside for loss (-3). Pushed C Philip Blake back initially but he reanchored and stoned Tony for loss (-3). Unfair because out of position but dominated by OT Matt McCants on speed rush at DE for big loss-not a 4-3 DE by any stretch (-4). Bull rushed OG Will Blackwell back quickly for win (+3). Day 3: Nice job tossing aside McCants in drill. 1×1: Good push vs. C Ben Jones knocking him back near cone but never quite getting around him for small win (+2). Only small movement on bull rush vs. OT Jeff Adams at OG for big loss (-4). Small push vs. Blake on bull rush then fought to get edge and couldn’t quite get it for loss (-3). Small push vs. C William Vlachos but gained edge near the end for late small win (+2). Tried to penetrate and caught by Adams at OG who pushed him sideways 5-7 yds for big loss (-4). 11×11: Below average in run play at him vs. Blake, good job trailing sweep to outside nearly getting him at LOS, good trail on run play away getting tackle after 3 yds-is very mobile and just screams 3-4 DE. 2011 Senior Bowl Game: No rush as DE vs. RT Mitchell Schwartz, solid push vs. RT Keleche Osemele but QB rolled other way, good pressure on naked bootleg to his side forcing tough throw, no rush vs. Osemele and looked slow, no rush vs. RG Kevin Seitler, great job trailing left sweep then penetrating and dive tackling RB for no gain-not really a pass rusher but has some speed for a guy his size which is seen best in the run game (1:00 2nd), looked slow and awkward rushing passer vs. Schwartz, small push and couldn’t get edge vs. LG Tony Bergstrom for no rush, great read of RB screen dropping back and almost batting ball-if just a bit faster I would love Tony but just isn’t quite fast or explosive enough (11:20 4th).

Tape: 2011: SMU, Oklahoma St., Arkansas, Idaho, Texas Tech, Baylor, Iowa St., Kansas St., UT, Northwestern, Senior Bowl Practices and Game

Overall: Tony is a player that if used correctly could be an average starter but he lacks great strength or athleticism so in the wrong situation he will look like a fish out of water and fail. That was shown at the Senior Bowl, when he surprisingly received an invitation, and often was forced to play out of position at DE where he showed little to no pass rush ability. Yet when moved inside to DT he was strong at the point of attack, had good quickness to trail plays, and had a bull rush that was occasionally effective. Going to that event probably did more harm than good as he a the freakish athlete who can win the edge on a top OT while weighing 305 lbs. Those drills made him look bad but there’s nothing wrong with not being a rare athlete and I still like Tony as a average starter or good backup 3-4 DE as his frame fits it well and he has experience at that spot the past few years. He anchors against the run very well and showed off his strength at his pro day with 29 reps to go along with a good 40 time (5.15) for his size (6’4 305). Don’t expect anything special from him but for a team that runs a 3-4 defense and just wants their DEs to occupy blockers and have the quickness to trail a play he will fit right in and be worth a later round pick. 6th round as my #9 3-4 DE 4/6/12.

10. Tyrone Crawford Boise St. 6’4 ¼ 275 Sr.

Stats: MWC

Year

Tackles

Sack

TFL

QBH

FF

INT

TD

 2011

44 

6.5 

13.5 

 2010 

32 

13.5 

 JUCO

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 JUCO

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Combine: Had a 1.75 10 yd split then a 1.62 on 2nd attempt which placed him 2nd behind only Alan Branch! 1st team MWC in 2011. Average in multi bag drill. Average in double dummy drill. Average in direction cone drill. Above average in backpedal drill.

HGT

WGT

Arms

Hands

40

Reps

Vert

Broad

Shuttle

3 Cone

1 yr %

6042

275

33.75

9.5

4.85

 

33

908

4.25

7.15

82.8

Notes: All American in ’09 as JUCO player. 1st team MWC in 2011. In the 2011 Georgia game he showed good strength on bull rush vs. LT Cordy Glenn pushing him back in 3 sec nearly to QB (10:30 3rd), really good trail being blocked inside on outside run but getting off Glenn’s block to catch RB Isaiah Crowell on diving ankle tackle showing speed and hustle. In the 2011 Arizona St. game he had no rush on bobbled snap that was sack opportunity, solid inside penetration vs. RT getting 1 yd tackle on inside run, solid push on LG on inside stunt, poor discipline biting on inside run allowing play action rollout by QB, good inside penetration getting TFL on 3rd and goal from the 1 yd line (7:50 3rd). Played at 275 but bulked up to 285 for Shrine game and now looks like a 3-4 DE type which fits him better as he lacks the burst to be a 4-3 DE. In the 2011 East-West Shrine Game he was cut but stayed up and nearly batted ball at LOS on quick throw, good bull rush vs. RT Lamar Holmes getting close to QB even on quick throw (4:24 2nd), barely couldn’t get edge vs. Holmes, beat RG Derek Dennis on pull block in backfield getting 4 sec sack (9:45 3rd), good bull rush vs. LT Jeff Adams getting near QB for quick pressure, pushed well back by combo of RG and RT-5 yds downfield and turned backwards, no rush vs. LT Joe Long, very good bull rush vs. Adams nearly getting to QB despite quick throw (0:37 4th), good bull rush again vs. Adams on quick throw. Out of the 8 DEs at East-West Shrine Game he was one of the best at #2 (Wilber). His added weight really fits well and he now has a legit position as I liked his strength and hustle but knew he just didn’t have the burst needed to be a 3-4 OLB or 4-3 DE. He’s a 7th rounder as a 3-4 DE 1/24/12.

Tape: 2011: Georgia, Arizona St., TCU, East-West Shrine Game

Overall: Tyrone was a player who I wasn’t terribly impressed with on film the past few years yet with a nice frame (6’4 1/4 275) he had a chance to bulk up into a quality 3-4 DE and I had him in my mind as a late round flier type. Yet at the Combine he ran one of the fastest 10 yd splits of any DE (1.62) and looking back at his stats I realized that he actually had some pretty outstanding numbers the past two years (76 tackles, 13.5 sacks, 27 TFL, 4 FF). I did more research and agreed again with my initial assessment that he lacks the burst to be a 4-3 DE and will need to bulk up to be a 3-4 yet his production and 10 yd split no longer make me 100% positive he can’t play 4-3 DE and I’m moving him up a round. A tall player with good strength and a solid burst who probably fits best as a 3-4 DE but might work as a left side 4-3 DE. 6th round as my #10 3-4 DE 4/5/12.

11. Matthew Masifilo Stanford 6’2 7/8 280 Sr.

Stats: ACC

Year

Tackles

Sack

TFL

QBH

FF

INT

TD

2011

34

2.5

8

0

1

0

0

2010

33

4

4.5

1

2

0

0

2009

18

1

2

1

0

0

0

2008

22

0

0.5

0

0

0

0

Pro Day: 3/22/12

HGT

WGT

Arms

Hands

40

Reps

Vert

Broad

Shuttle

3 Cone

1 yr %

6027

280

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Notes: Definitely a 3-4 DE or 4-3 DT as he doesn’t have nearly the athleticism to be a real DE. In the 2011 Washington game he showed good strength pushing through RT block for TFL (9:40 1st), good TFL showing okay quickness to get through line unblocked for -3 yds (1:55 2nd), batted ball at LOS.   

Tape: 2011:Washington,California,Oregon,Oklahoma St.

Overall: A player I noticed on tape as a strong bull rush type who is also good against the run. He lacks the athleticism to play 4-3 DE but I think he’s worth a late round pick to see if he can convert to a 3-4 DE. 7th round as my #11 3-4 DE 4/7/12.

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