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OldTimer1960

Draft: DE Prospect Opinions

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Disclaimer:  long time fan, long time follower of the draft, I don’t profess to have scouting experience or expertise.  
 

I think the Bills are in the market for a young DE in the draft so I watched multiple full games of several DE prospects and my observations/opinions follow.  I didn’t include the top prospects Young, Epenesa, Gross-Matos and Davidson as I don’t expect them to be available by pick 54, but I think any of them would be nice picks if still there.  Players are not listed in any specific order.  Comments and discussion welcomed!
 

Defensive Ends

Bradley Anae - Watched vs Texas, Oregon and USC.  High effort player who looks like he gives up a lot of size against OTs.  Showed ability to beat OT inside with counter and a nice spin move, but showed little ability to beat OT around the edge.  Maybe it was the scheme and him playing his backside responsibilities, but looked like he often got stuck to the blocker.  Disappointing combine numbers and shorter than ideal arms don’t help his draft status.  Was productive in college and super effective at Senior Bowl posting 3 sacks and PFF rates his pass rush skills highly - maybe I saw some dud games.

 

Alton Robinson - LDE Syracuse.  Plays with good knee bend and lateral agility- looks athletic.  Hustles and plays to the whistle.   Showed a bit of quickness to beat RT wide and to inside.  Good combine numbers including 25 reps on bench, impressive 4.69 40 and 35” vertical.  Interesting prospect.  Watched Pitt and Notre Dame.

 

Jonathan Greenard - (watched vs. Miami, Florida St) - plays mostly as down DE, but also as stand-up LB with some drops into coverage.  Moves like an athlete with knees bent and smooth change of direction.  Generated pressure and sacks in games that I saw.  Hustles, did not see him take any plays off.  Has quite long arms and uses them effectively.  Greenard’s 4.87 40 and 30.5” vertical were underwhelming.  

 

Curtis Weaver - (watched vs. Florida State, Colorado State)- played almost exclusively in a 2-point stance.  Dropped into coverage on occasion, though doesn’t look to have the speed to do that in NFL.  Pretty smooth mover, though not as smooth as Greenard, in my opinion.  Can generate pressure and sacks inside on counter moves.  Can rush wide, but doesn’t show great burst.  Sometimes moves inside to DT on passing down.  Overall, looked to be an effective rusher in the games that I watched, but wonder how effective he can be in NFL with little experience playing from a 3 or 4 point stance.  Did not run or lift at the combine - doesn’t look to have much speed based on the games I watched.

 

Julian Okwara - watched vs Virginia & Georgia.  Good size. Plays from both 3-point and 2-point stance.  Shows some power and acceleration on pass rush.  Showed ability to generate pass rush on inside and outside moves.  Not strong against the run, but has the frame to get bigger.  I was pleasantly surprised at his play - interesting potential.  Did not participate at combine except for the bench press where he showed well.

 

Khalid Kareem - watched vs. Georgia &  Michigan.  Athletic build with long arms, reasonably easy movement.  Seems to play the run well.  Didn’t show many pass rush moves and doesn’t show much burst or explosiveness to be much of a pass rusher.  Sack production in college was modest.  Did not participate much at combine due to injury.

 

Josh Uche - watched vs. Penn State, Illinois.  Undersized DE and OLB and plays mostly from a 2-point stance.  Shows some speed/burst.  Drops into coverage a lot.  While he has speed, he didn’t show a broad repertoire of pass rush moves and doesn’t have the strength to rush with power.  Did have 8.5 sacks in 2019.  At 6’ 1” and 245 may be better at LB than DE.  Did not participate at combine.

 

Terrell Lewis - watched vs. LSU, Auburn. - Plays DE and LB.  Athletic enough to drop into coverage.  Shows acceleration to beat OT to inside.  Seems like he should be more effective beating OT wide.  Did not make any impactful plays in either game that I watched.  Good size and arm length, but looks quite lean on video.  I’ve read that he missed considerable time with injuries so that need to be evaluated by team doctors.  Seems like there is upside on this player.

 

Alex Highsmith - watched vs. Buffalo & Clemson - plays with very good effort on every play.  Against Buffalo, he overmatched UB OT #67 beating him with power and quickness generating good pass rush consistently.  Note, don’t know how good UB OT was.  Clemson game was a major blowout, but he generated some pressure early against Clemson’s 1st team and collected a sack vs their 2nd team.  Reportedly is a leader and high effort athlete.  Undersized at 248 lbs, but showed well athletically at combine.  

 

Derrek Tuszka  - watched vs Illinois State.  Hustler, shows some pop to stand up OT on run plays and an effective bull rush at FCS level.  Ran well at the combine, but will be downgraded as a DE for much shorter than ideal arms.  Didn’t show exceptional speed and flexibility to overcome lack of ideal stature.  Chance due effort.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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These are my top 4. 

 

 

I like Alton Robinson a lot. He’s a fast twitch DE and fairly productive. I wonder if a good coach like Sean McDermott or Eric Washington could squeeze out more production out of him and turn this guy into a star pass rusher at the next level. His God given physical skill set is tremendous and arguably one of the best in the draft. If I could pick one player I hope the Bills would draft it’d be him. Please Mr. Beane, take Alton Robinson in the third. 

 

Kenny Willekes plays with good leverage, high motor, strong, good bend. Once again, would be great in the third round.

 

Josh Uche is a player that I feel could take over Lorenzo Alexander’s position. Great SLB, offers a lot of boom in the pass rush department, probably a 2nd round pick, likely gone before we pick. Explosive athlete.

 

Curtis Weaver would be a great second round pick if we go EDGE with our first pick. I think he’d fit in perfectly on the left side where Shaq left off. Power, strength, leverage, brute force is his game. Solid in the run. Three down starter.

 

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3 minutes ago, maryland-bills-fan said:

There is such a run on DEs predicted by the mock drafts that I don't see that this is they year to go DE, except in late rounds.

 

You could be right but I think the Bills like this Robinson kid from Syracuse. They meant with him at the combine, might have had him in for a visit---not sure. The Bills will probably go BPA in Rd 2 their first pick but I won't be surprised if they move up a little in the 3rd round if he's still there.

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The Bills two biggest needs are RB2 and a young edge.

 

They can take care of that with their first two picks.

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Posted (edited)

I dont see an edge at 54 making much of an impact or seeing much playing time.  This year seems short on quick twitch ends.  

Edited by Mat68
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most of the guys who will be available at 54 seem to be backup caliber, at least at first.  I think a guy like Alton Robinson,  Curtis Weaver, or Highsmith in the 3rd or 4th would be a good get.  

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To me, out of that list, the guys who fit the mold of what they are looking for here are Greenard, Okwara, Khareem, and Lewis. The rest of those guys are either too small or lack length. 
 

Chase Young, Matos, Epenesa, are great fits but are all out of reach. Then there are guys like Trevis Gipson and Jonathan Garvin. If we draft an edge guy, I’m guessing its somebody off this list. Im probably missing some guys, but these other 6-1, 31 inch arm guys ain't getting drafted by us. 

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I'm wary of Bradley Anae.  He's a high effort player and uses some good techniques, but I don't think he has the athleticism to be an effective pro.

 

You could add Jabari Zuniga from Florida to your list.  He had a real nice combine.  He had the top 10 yard split in the entire position group and one of the better bench presses.  He's a project though.  Same with James Smith-Williams, a late round sleeper type with athleticism and upside.

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5 hours ago, Victory Formation said:

These are my top 4. 

 

 

I like Alton Robinson a lot. He’s a fast twitch DE and fairly productive. I wonder if a good coach like Sean McDermott or Eric Washington could squeeze out more production out of him and turn this guy into a star pass rusher at the next level. His God given physical skill set is tremendous and arguably one of the best in the draft. If I could pick one player I hope the Bills would draft it’d be him. Please Mr. Beane, take Alton Robinson in the third. 

 

Kenny Willekes plays with good leverage, high motor, strong, good bend. Once again, would be great in the third round.

 

Josh Uche is a player that I feel could take over Lorenzo Alexander’s position. Great SLB, offers a lot of boom in the pass rush department, probably a 2nd round pick, likely gone before we pick. Explosive athlete.

 

Curtis Weaver would be a great second round pick if we go EDGE with our first pick. I think he’d fit in perfectly on the left side where Shaq left off. Power, strength, leverage, brute force is his game. Solid in the run. Three down starter.

 

Willekes is my pick

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I’m very high on Alton Robinson after his combine performance.

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The fact OBD grabbed Addison, Quinton Jefferson DE/DT from SEA and traded away their #1 pick speaks volumes of their assessment of the DEs in the draft.  Can't see them taking one at 54 unless one of the top 3 guys drops dramatically.  

 

Robinson, Greenard or Anae in Rd 4 are a possibilities.

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9 hours ago, freddyjj said:

The fact OBD grabbed Addison, Quinton Jefferson DE/DT from SEA and traded away their #1 pick speaks volumes of their assessment of the DEs in the draft.  Can't see them taking one at 54 unless one of the top 3 guys drops dramatically.  

 

Robinson, Greenard or Anae in Rd 4 are a possibilities.

I totally agree with this and will add that if there was a DE that they really liked enough to take early, they likely would've kept their 1st.  Brandon Beane says that there aren't enough good pass rushers to go around.  I could see them trading for one in the future.

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13 hours ago, freddyjj said:

The fact OBD grabbed Addison, Quinton Jefferson DE/DT from SEA and traded away their #1 pick speaks volumes of their assessment of the DEs in the draft.  Can't see them taking one at 54 unless one of the top 3 guys drops dramatically.  

 

Robinson, Greenard or Anae in Rd 4 are a possibilities.

Addison isn’t a great pass rusher. He gets handled rather easily.... not sure a good edge guy will be there at 54, but I wouldn’t be opposed to them drafting one.

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Josh Uche should be there in second and has the profile to replace lorax. Willikes in the 3rd I'f we wait. Darrell Taylor from Tennessee from a developmental standpoint his physical gifts are outstanding needs coaching

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15 hours ago, freddyjj said:

The fact OBD grabbed Addison, Quinton Jefferson DE/DT from SEA and traded away their #1 pick speaks volumes of their assessment of the DEs in the draft. 

 

That's the way I see it as well.   It's an underwhelming group this year and I can't see them drafting for DE need at #54...

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20 hours ago, freddyjj said:

 

Robinson, Greenard or Anae in Rd 4 are a possibilities.

 

No they are not. Will all be long gone! 

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8 hours ago, ScottLaw said:

Addison isn’t a great pass rusher. He gets handled rather easily.... not sure a good edge guy will be there at 54, but I wouldn’t be opposed to them drafting one.

39 sacks over the past 4 seasons seems like good production to me.  Puts  him in top 10 in league range.  

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Posted (edited)

I think every team likes to add pass rushers. 

 

Trouble is this  year the overall  quality and depth there is really lacking. 

Edited by DJB

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