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2023 NFL Draft: Defensive Linemen Prospects

Top-rated defensive linemen prospects in the 2023 NFL Draft.
Charles Schwab | https://www.schwab.com/

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DL | LB | DB 

2023 NFL Draft: Top Defensive Linemen Prospects

As the 2023 NFL Draft approaches, all eyes are on the top prospects vying to make their mark in the league. While many are focused on the flashy positions such as quarterback or wide receiver, the success of a team often hinges on the play of the unsung heroes in the trenches. Along the defensive line, a number of talented prospects are poised to make their mark in the NFL. From dominant edge rushers to disruptive interior linemen, these players are sure to be highly sought-after by teams looking to bolster their defensive units. Here are some of the top defensive line prospects to watch in the 2023 NFL Draft.

Rd. 1, Pk. 3 (Hou) - WILL ANDERSON JR., ALABAMA (7.02, EDGE)

Height: 6′ 3 1/2”. Weight: 253 lbs.
Arm: 33 7/8”. Hand: 9 7/8”.

Prospect grade: 7.02
Next Gen stats: 90 

Production score: 99 
Athleticism score: 76 
Total score: 90 

40-Yd dash: 4.6 sec || 10-Yd split: 1.61 sec || Vert. jump: || Broad jump: || 3-Cone drill:  || 20-Yd shuttle:  || Bench press:

Player Bio: Anderson’s impact on the Tide was immediate, as he secured a spot on the SEC All-Freshman Team while starting in 13 games for the national champions. In his first season, Anderson recorded 52 tackles, 10.5 for loss, and seven sacks. As a sophomore, he further solidified his position as a top defender, earning the Bronko Nagurski Trophy and All-American, SEC Defensive Player of the Year, and first-team All-SEC honors. Anderson was even a finalist for the Heisman Trophy, finishing fifth in the voting. His sophomore campaign saw him lead the FBS in tackles for loss with 34.5 and sacks with 17.5, among his 102 total stops in 15 starts. In 2022, Anderson continued to impress, winning the Chuck Bednarik Award and Lombardi Award, as well as the Lott IMPACT Trophy. He was once again awarded the Nagurski Trophy and named All-American and SEC Defensive Player of the Year, with 51 tackles, a team-high 17 for loss, 10 sacks, and one interception in 13 starts. It’s no wonder Anderson has earned the nickname “The Terminator.”

Overview: Anderson is a highly productive player who has started for three years in the renowned Alabama program. With his impressive performances, he has demonstrated his potential impact on the field. Anderson has a well-built physique with long arms, allowing him to effectively shave edges and create rush paths with inside moves. Even when blocked on the diagonal or around the arc, his footwork, cornering ability, and closing speed enable him to get into the pocket. While he still has room for improvement in his hand usage, he has shown an ability to consistently get to the quarterback. It remains to be seen whether he can replicate his sack totals in a different scheme than Nick Saban’s. Anderson’s skillset is best suited to a 3-4 front, where he can play wider to compensate for any size deficiencies at the point of attack. Based on his traits, athleticism, and production against top-level competition, Anderson’s future looks bright, with the potential for Pro Bowl appearances.

Strengths: The player has a proportional build and remarkable arm length, which gives him an advantage on the field. He possesses impressive get-off speed, allowing him to attack the corner effectively. His goodie bag of tactics and approaches enables him to threaten edges continuously. The player couples his hands with hip flips to flatten the edge and rush into the pocket. Additionally, he uses his powerful hips to play through the blocker’s inside edge. His athleticism and closing burst allow him to hunt down quarterbacks when the play extends. Furthermore, he fires his hands first and anchors down to establish a firm edge. His wide base and torque power allow him to discard blocks with ease. He has excellent pursuit speed and can catch the runner from the backside. The player also displays good lateral fluidity and body control, making him efficient in changing direction.

Weaknesses: The player must maintain a high motor throughout the play, from start to finish. He is sometimes forced into prolonged confrontations against linemen at the point of attack. Additionally, hip tightness restricts his stride length when rushing. He needs to work on developing hand counters to overcome well-timed punches from opponents. The player’s energy level as a run defender seems to decrease at times. For instance, he had difficulty handling the length and power of Tennessee RT Darnell Wright.


Height: 6′ 3”. Weight: 314 lbs.
Arm: 33 1/2”. Hand: 10 1/4”.

Prospect grade: 7.05
Next Gen stats: 87 

Production score: 86 
Athleticism score: 83 
Total score: 87 

40-Yd dash:  || 10-Yd split:  || Vert. jump: || Broad jump: || 3-Cone drill:  || 20-Yd shuttle:  || Bench press:

Player Bio: After excelling in football at Apopka High School in Florida, Carter emerged as one of the top recruits in the country. He also showcased his athletic prowess in basketball and weightlifting, earning second place in the state heavyweight division with a 395-pound bench press. As a true freshman during the 2020 season, he demonstrated his strength and versatility by starting twice in 10 games and blocking a kick, while making 14 tackles and three tackles for loss. In the following year, he played alongside 2022 first-round picks Jordan Davis and Devonte Wyatt on the defensive line for the national champions, earning second-team All-SEC honors. Despite missing some playing time due to knee and ankle injuries, Carter led the Bulldogs defense that allowed the fewest rushing yards per game (77.1) in 2022, and was recognized with first-team Associated Press All-American and all-conference honors. In 13 games, he recorded 32 tackles, seven tackles for loss, three sacks, three pass breakups, and two forced fumbles, starting nine of those games.

Overview: When evaluating a player’s potential draft grade, several areas are taken into consideration, including traits, toughness, explosiveness, skill level, potential for growth, and positional projections. Fortunately, Carter has excelled in all of these areas, making him an impressive prospect. However, his maturity is an area that will need to be evaluated by each team as they make their assessments. When reviewing his game tape, it’s evident that Carter is a versatile defender who can excel in either an odd or even front. He possesses a rare combination of quickness and leverage, allowing him to quickly get past guards and make plays in the backfield. Carter’s hand usage is impressive, whether it’s through violent or subtle movements, and his feet are always active in search of an opening. Overall, based on his talent, traits, and projection, Carter appears poised to make an immediate impact in the NFL as a productive three-down talent with the potential to become a Pro Bowler.

Strengths: Carter boasts an exceptional amount of lean muscle mass that is well-proportioned throughout his frame. He possesses an explosive first step that allows him to quickly move from his stance to a premium position at the snap of the ball. His step-and-swim move is a particularly effective technique that gives him an advantage over opposing guards. Carter’s hands are compact and accurate, allowing him to remain in a ready position and efficiently handle any challenges that come his way. During lateral engagements, he holds the point and keeps an eye on both gaps. When facing a double team, Carter widens his base and rolls his hips, making it difficult for blockers to move him off his path. He also flurries his hands to disorient the protection and create opportunities for himself. Carter’s upper and lower body work together in perfect harmony, allowing him to use an edge-to-edge rush approach. He batters the edge and forcefully opens the door to the pocket with his club move. Thanks to his exceptional leverage, it’s difficult to redirect him once he’s found the blocker’s edge.

Weaknesses: While Carter possesses an impressive amount of muscle mass, he may need to add a bit more to match up against NFL guards. When facing true heavyweights, he can sometimes lose momentum during power swaps. For instance, he was neutralized by the size and strength of Florida’s O’Cyrus Torrence in 2022. Additionally, during the College Football Playoff semifinal against Ohio State, Carter appeared to run out of gas. To become an even more effective pass rusher, he could benefit from diversifying his rush approach. Finally, some scouts have raised concerns about his maturity, as he has had some issues in this area at times.


Height: 6′ 6”. Weight: 271 lbs.
Arm: 35 5/8”. Hand: 9 5/8”.

Prospect grade: 6.77
Next Gen stats: 89 

Production score: 91 
Athleticism score: 76 
Total score: 89 

40-Yd dash:  || 10-Yd split:  || Vert. jump: || Broad jump: || 3-Cone drill:  || 20-Yd shuttle:  || Bench press: 23 reps

Player Bio: After earning second-team All-Texas honors at West Rusk High School, Wilson enrolled at Texas A&M where he redshirted his first year before playing in 12 games as a backup in 2019, recording 12 tackles, three for loss with 1.5 sacks. He later transferred to Texas Tech for the 2020 season, starting five of nine games and tallying 11 tackles and 1.5 sacks. In 2021, Wilson had a standout season with the Red Raiders, starting all 13 games and leading the team with 13.5 tackles for loss and seven sacks, earning him honorable mention All-Big 12 recognition. He was also named to the Associated Press All-Bowl Team for his performance in the team’s AutoZone Liberty Bowl victory over Mississippi State, where he recorded four tackles, two sacks, and three pass deflections. Despite a season-ending foot injury, Wilson finished his senior year with 14 tackles for loss and seven sacks among his 61 tackles in 10 starts, earning him recognition as a second-team Associated Press All-American and first-team all-conference selection.

Overview: Wilson possesses a long-limbed build, and his potential to become an intimidating force on the field is enormous if he continues to mature physically and improve his skills. His combination of attributes and athleticism should enable him to make powerful plays on both offense and defense, especially in disrupting the back-side run game due to his length and lateral quickness. Wilson is also capable of making tackles from afar if the run moves sideways. However, his instincts in defending the run need development, and he could benefit from having a more aggressive approach when attacking blocks. As a power rusher, Wilson’s physical tools are already impressive, but his technique and strategy will require coaching to become a well-rounded and versatile rusher. Although his impact in his first year may not be earth-shattering, his potential and talent will become increasingly evident.

Strengths: Wilson boasts elite size and an enormous wingspan, and has already demonstrated impressive production, but still has significant potential for growth. He excels at controlling tight ends at the line of scrimmage and is a formidable force in disrupting run plays with his hard-hitting back-side crash. His length enables him to make seemingly improbable tackles from a distance, and he leverages his long arms to win rush battles with his slap-and-swim moves. He also has an effective inside stab move that throws tackles off-balance and opens up opportunities for interior rushes. He is capable of executing end-tackle twists, slicing through the B-gap, and collapsing the pocket. With further development, he has the potential to take early control of the rush and slice through redirection and recovery blocks with ease.

Weaknesses: Wilson struggles with explosive get-off and has difficulty bending and flattening at the arc. As a pro rusher, he will need to develop more skilled and violent hand techniques. At the point of attack, his play can be narrow and upright, limiting his effectiveness. Additionally, he can be slow to process movement and may lose contain, compromising his defense. He also tends to have a delayed punch and struggles to maintain separation, which can allow blockers to penetrate his frame. Finally, he needs to adopt a more aggressive approach when attacking blocks.


Height: 6′ 5”. Weight: 285 lbs.
Arm: 34”. Hand: 10 1/8”.

Prospect grade: 6.43
Next Gen stats: 81 

Production score: 75 
Athleticism score: 82 
Total score: 81 

40-Yd dash:  || 10-Yd split:  || Vert. jump: 34” || Broad jump: 9′ 9” || 3-Cone drill:  || 20-Yd shuttle:  || Bench press: 30 reps

Player Bio: Originally recruited as a three-star player from Garner, North Carolina, the athlete started his college career as a tight end at Old Dominion, playing eight games and catching 11 passes for 124 yards during his redshirt freshman season in 2018. In 2019, he made the switch to defensive end and had a stellar year, earning second-team All-Conference USA honors by tying the school record with 19 tackles for loss and making 62 tackles in 12 starts. However, the athlete was unable to continue his momentum in 2020 when the football season was canceled due to COVID-19 concerns. He decided to transfer to Georgia Tech for the 2021 season and, after recovering from an injury, made four tackles in four games. In his final season, he had an impressive performance, earning third-team All-ACC recognition by leading his team with 14 tackles for loss and 7.5 sacks, and making 54 total tackles in 12 starts.

Overview: White is a highly athletic big man who offers scheme versatility and has projectable upside. He possesses good short-area quickness and speed in open space, but struggles with consistent early phase technique to control the play. Despite this, he compensates with his impressive recovery talent, hustle, and athletic traits that enable him to get in on the action. While his pass rush can be predictable and lacks focus, he has the ability to become a disruptive force with his bendy frame, provided he receives coaching to develop his physical gifts. Though still in the developmental phase, White’s physical and athletic profile make him a promising prospect for becoming a top-performing starter as either a 4-3 or 3-4 defensive end.

Strengths: This athlete possesses an exceptional combination of size and athleticism, making him an ideal candidate for playing as either an odd- or even-front end. He demonstrates impressive suddenness with his first hands into contact and has the speed and short-area quickness needed to make plays. Additionally, he has a relentless motor that enables him to rally through blocks and get to the football. Notably, he possesses an exciting level of edge bend that has yet to be fully cultivated. With his downhill power rush, he is capable of bullying tackles and causing disruptions in the backfield.

Weaknesses: This athlete possesses several positive traits, but consistency is still a work in progress. He can struggle with diagnosing blocking schemes, leading to delayed reactions. Additionally, his punch into full extension to control a block is below average, and he often has difficulty shedding blocks due to less than ideal upper-body twitch. His body control can also be lacking when engaged in contact. To improve, he must work on developing go-to moves and refining his handwork to improve his overall effectiveness on the field.


Height: 6′ 5”. Weight: 268 lbs.
Arm: 33 3/4”. Hand: 8 1/2”.

Prospect grade: 6.42
Next Gen stats: 80 

Production score: 72 
Athleticism score: 80 
Total score: 80 

40-Yd dash:  || 10-Yd split:  || Vert. jump: || Broad jump: || 3-Cone drill:  || 20-Yd shuttle:  || Bench press:

Player Bio: Myles Murphy attended Hillgrove High School in Georgia, which has produced notable NFL players like Bradley Chubb, Kenyan Drake, and Evan Engram. In his first year playing for Clemson University, Murphy made an immediate impact and was recognized as a Freshman All-American with a team-high 12 tackles for loss, including four sacks, among 41 total stops in 12 games, six of which he started. He continued to excel in his sophomore and junior seasons, leading the Tigers with 14 tackles for loss and seven sacks in 2021, earning him second-team All-ACC honors. In 2022, Murphy received first-team accolades after tying for the team lead with 6.5 sacks, along with 40 total tackles, 11 for loss, and two pass breakups, in 13 games with 11 starts. Myles’ father, Willard, also played football at Chattanooga.

Overview: Myles Murphy is a highly talented player with excellent size and traits who has consistently demonstrated his impact for three straight years. He possesses a great motor and good first-step quickness, though his game lacks explosive twitchiness. While he has finishing talent when operating within the pocket, Murphy needs to vary his rush angles and develop an effective inside counter, as NFL tackles will likely anticipate his long-arm bull-rush technique. With his length and post-up strength, Murphy’s abilities offer scheme and positional versatility that makes him a top draft prospect. While his traits and potential are impressive, he could further improve his skills to reach even greater heights.

Strengths: With his NFL size and length, this player offers excellent versatility within various schemes. His first step is sudden and explosive, allowing him to quickly get up the rush track. He utilizes a long-arm rush move to drive the tackle back into the pocket. Even when initially set back, he is quick to adjust his rush and remain effective. Additionally, his long strides enable him to avoid block redirection around the rush arc, while his lateral burst permits him to beat tackles across their face straight off the snap. When slanting into gaps, he demonstrates proper bend and leverage, which counters wash-down attempts. Furthermore, he incorporates a spin move to disengage from run blocks, and crashes down hard from the back side to spoil the run. His high motor ensures he remains fueled for pursuit.

Weaknesses: Needs to improve his ability to create a clear rush plan to beat tackles. At times, he rides on pass blocks beyond the depth of the pocket. He could benefit from developing an inside counter move to diversify his tactics. Additionally, his leggy movements can hinder his momentum as a rusher. He demonstrates average body control through contact and below-average short-area agility as a tackler. Furthermore, it takes him some time to reach his top speed in pursuit.


Height: 6′ 4”. Weight: 239 lbs.
Arm: 34 7/8”. Hand: 9 1/2”.

Prospect grade: 6.41
Next Gen stats: 78 

Production score: 75 
Athleticism score: 82 
Total score: 78 

40-Yd dash:  || 10-Yd split:  || Vert. jump: 36” || Broad jump: 11′ 0” || 3-Cone drill:  || 20-Yd shuttle:  || Bench press:

Player Bio: Despite not playing until his junior year at Waukesha North High School in Wisconsin, McDonald was named a first-team all-state pick. After playing in four games and taking a redshirt in 2018, he played in all 13 games the following year and switched from linebacker to defensive end, amassing six sacks among his 15 tackles. Although he didn’t start a game in 2020, McDonald still managed to receive first-team All-Big 12 Conference honors by tying for the FBS lead with 10.5 sacks in 12 games. In 2021, McDonald broke his own school record with 11.5 sacks (tying for seventh in the FBS) and tied for fourth in the FBS with a school-record-tying five forced fumbles. For his outstanding performance in 13 games, including 11 starts, he was named a third-team Associated Press All-American and the Big 12 Co-Defensive Lineman of the Year. McDonald continued to excel in 2022, starting all 12 games and earning first-team all-conference honors after recording 36 tackles, 7.5 for loss, a team-high five sacks, and four pass breakups.

Overview: McDonald is a dynamic and agile edge player whose hands and feet are always in motion, making it difficult for tackles to contain him. His explosive speed and flexibility in his lower body give him an advantage at the top of his rush, while his adeptness at executing spin moves and gauging pocket depth make him a well-rounded threat. Despite his smaller size, McDonald possesses good strength and impressive contact balance, enabling him to hold his own against larger opponents. However, he may struggle with setting a firm edge and standing his ground against a downhill running attack. In summary, McDonald’s tough attitude and prowess in pass-rushing are winning traits that make him a strong candidate for success as a 3-4 outside linebacker and skilled sack specialist.

Strengths: This player is an explosive athlete with long arms, allowing them to effectively utilize well-timed hands and length to disengage from blockers. They exhibit creativity in breaking free from blocks to get involved in the play. Their impressive change-of-direction quickness enables them to pursue targets with speed and agility. When rushing, they fire out and quickly reach the top of the rush arc, relying on ankle flexion and hip strength to rip, bend, and redirect with power. This player rushes to the depth of the pocket and has the ability to work back underneath with ease. In addition, their spin move is reminiscent of Dwight Freeney’s iconic move when he played for Syracuse.

Weaknesses: This player has a lean build through their waist, hips, and thighs. While they are strong, they lack the mass required for the NFL level, particularly when it comes to holding their position at the point of attack. They are also inconsistent when it comes to maintaining their positioning as a run defender, and they exhibit less burst than anticipated when pursuing targets in tight spaces. When it comes to tackling, they tend to rely on grabbing rather than hitting with power behind their pads. In addition, their rush hands exhibit below-average power, and they demonstrate average conversion of speed to power.


Height: 6′ 5”. Weight: 272 lbs.
Arm: 34”. Hand: 11”.

Prospect grade: 6.40
Next Gen stats: 79 

Production score: 73 
Athleticism score: 78 
Total score: 79 

40-Yd dash: 4.58 sec || 10-Yd split: 1.64 sec || Vert. jump: 31” || Broad jump: 9′ 10” || 3-Cone drill: 7.02 sec || 20-Yd shuttle: 4.32 sec || Bench press: 17 reps

Player Bio: Van Ness was awarded first-team all-state recognition during his final year at Barrington High School in Illinois. In 2020, he joined the Hawkeyes after signing with them and redshirted as a true freshman. Van Ness’s talent was on full display the following year, as he recorded 33 tackles, 8.5 for loss, and a team-high seven sacks in 14 games played, earning him recognition as a Freshman All-American. Despite not starting any games in 2022, he still managed to receive second-team All-Big Ten honors. This was due to his remarkable performance, which included leading the Hawkeyes with 11 tackles for loss, 6.5 sacks, and two blocked kicks, tying for sixth place in the national rankings. Van Ness played in 13 games that season and recorded 38 tackles.

Overview: Known to his teammates as “Hercules,” Van Ness is an accomplished defensive end with impressive lean mass, and he still has room to grow further. He is a prospect who relies heavily on his power and is equally capable of defending against the run and rushing the passer. However, Van Ness would benefit from improving his hand attacks to quickly shed blocks and diversify his pass-rushing skills beyond the bull rush. Although he has played inside for Iowa, he may need to continue filling out his frame before he can thrive as a run stuffer and pass rusher as a 4i in a 3-4 front. While Van Ness tends to make more big plays than be a consistent force on tape, he possesses projectable traits that suggest he will continue to improve as a professional.

Strengths: This prospect has a prototypical frame and impressive lean muscle mass. He fires out of his stance quickly, allowing him to capture the neutral zone with ease. He possesses excellent play strength, which enables him to anchor and press blockers as a two-gapper. Furthermore, his powerful hips help him battle through angle blocks. He has a keen eye for the runner and can disengage from his blocker to tackle with precision. His wide alignment allows him to create bull-rush momentum, and his long-arm rush move generates good pocket push. He doesn’t give up easily and continues to push forward with a secondary rush effort. His agility is also an asset, particularly when it comes to corralling mobile quarterbacks.

Weaknesses: This prospect’s forward lean can be countered by blockers, limiting his effectiveness. He also needs to work on consistently using his hands to control and shed blocks quickly. Specifically, he could benefit from more schooling in using his hands as a rusher. He has not yet learned to transition from being a bull rusher into a closer. Additionally, his foot quickness for inside rush moves is only average. He takes too long to activate his change of direction as a twister. Unfortunately, he lacked effectiveness as an interior rusher.


Height: 6′ 1”. Weight: 281 lbs.
Arm: 30 5/8”. Hand: 9 1/8”.

Prospect grade: 6.39
Next Gen stats: 84 

Production score: 77 
Athleticism score: 98 
Total score: 84 

40-Yd dash: 4.67 sec || 10-Yd split: 1.64 sec || Vert. jump: || Broad jump: || 3-Cone drill:  || 20-Yd shuttle:  || Bench press:

Player Bio: After being named first-team All-Florida at Miami Northwestern High School, Kancey joined the Panthers but had to redshirt his first year, only playing in one game with no statistics. In the 2020 season, he played in all 11 games, starting the final four and making 27 tackles, seven for loss, 1.5 sacks, and two pass breakups. As a sophomore, he was recognized as a third-team Associated Press All-American and a first-team All-ACC player, leading the team with 13 tackles for loss, seven sacks, and 35 total tackles in 14 starts. In his junior year, he was named a first-team AP All-American and the ACC Defensive Player of the Year, becoming a finalist for both the Nagurski and Outland Trophies. He led the Panthers with 14.5 tackles for loss, 7.5 sacks, and 31 total stops in 11 starts, but unfortunately missed the last two games of the season due to a shoulder injury.

Overview: Despite his smaller size and limited ability as a run defender, Kancey is an explosive and productive one-gapping defensive tackle who possesses strength and determination. Although he may struggle against bigger opponents and get pushed around, his quick first-step and short memory help him make tackles in the backfield. As a pass rusher, he is a nightmare for offenses, utilizing his quick feet to change direction and reset points of attack. Guards often have a hard time handling his relentless motor and leverage. While he may be best utilized as a rotational run defender and full-time sub-package rusher, Kancey’s size will not limit his potential in the NFL.

Strengths: Kancey proved himself as a dominant force on the field during his two years as a full-time starter, boasting an impressive 14.5 sacks and 27.5 tackles for loss. His ability to combine first-step burst and contact balance sets him apart, allowing him to easily overpower leaning interior blockers. His excellent change-of-direction quickness and reactive athleticism make him a terror for quarterbacks, as he relentlessly pursues the fastest possible way into the pocket. Kancey uses his slide speed to start at the B-gap and finish his rush in the opposite A-gap, eventually finding an edge or angle to exploit. His forward-charging attack is complemented by a top-flight closing kick that allows him to quickly get to quarterbacks. Overall, Kancey’s laser-sharp focus and impressive skills make him a highly effective pass rusher.

Weaknesses: Although Kancey may lack prototypical size, his effectiveness as a pass rusher cannot be denied. However, when facing big guards who can latch onto him, he sometimes struggles to end the rush if he’s not the first off the snap. Additionally, his lack of length can be a disadvantage if he can’t get to a rush edge. Kancey has a tendency to duck his head into blockers, which can cause him to lose sight of the run play development. He also struggles to mirror lateral steps and can get reached and sealed by athletic blockers.


Height: 6′ 3”. Weight: 266 lbs.
Arm: 32 1/4”. Hand: 10 1/8”.

Prospect grade: 6.38
Next Gen stats: 71 

Production score: 76 
Athleticism score: 57 
Total score: 71 

40-Yd dash:  || 10-Yd split:  || Vert. jump: || Broad jump: || 3-Cone drill:  || 20-Yd shuttle:  || Bench press:

Player Bio: During his senior year at Lawndale High School, Tuli Tuipulotu caught the attention of USC recruiters by being named a third-team All-California selection. The Tuipulotu family had already established a relationship with USC, as Tuli’s brother, Marlon, played for the Trojans before moving on to the NFL. Additionally, Tuli’s cousin, Talanoa Hufanga, was the 2020 Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year at USC, and another cousin, Fili Moala, played on the defensive line at both USC and in the NFL. In 2020, Tuipulotu started three of the team’s six games, accumulating 22 tackles, 2.5 for loss, and two sacks. He went on to become a first-team All-Pac-12 Conference player and USC’s Defensive Lineman of the Year in 2021, recording 5.5 sacks in 12 starts along with 48 tackles, 7.5 for loss, and two forced fumbles. In 2022, Tuipulotu achieved first-team Associated Press All-American status and was a finalist for several national awards, as well as the Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year Award. He led the country with 13.5 sacks, ranked second with 22 tackles for loss, and made 46 total tackles while also contributing three pass breakups and two forced fumbles in 14 starts, cementing his status as a star player.

Overview: This defender possesses a rare combination of size, strength, and athleticism that allows him to play as an interior or edge defender in both 4-3 and 3-4 defensive schemes. Tuipulotu is known for his high-energy play, which lasts from the beginning of the game until the very end. He has a forceful approach and can effectively shed blockers despite his limited length at the point of attack. His quick footwork allows him to disrupt plays in gaps. Although he is capable of playing with his hand down or standing up, he could improve his discipline to avoid missed assignments. As a power-based rusher, Tuipulotu has some ability to bend and flatten to get to the quarterback, but he cannot rely on his get-off alone to be successful. Overall, he has the potential to develop into a quality starter.

Strengths: This player boasts exceptional versatility and can line up in any defensive front. In 2022, he had a tremendous season with 13.5 sacks and 22 tackles for loss. Despite his large size, he exhibits impressive agility and short-area athleticism. He is skilled at maneuvering around or engaging blockers and can play with bend. His quick, twitchy upper body allows him to disengage from opponents with ease. He also shows the ability to plan out his rush and effectively execute moves. With powerful hips, he can power through redirect blocks. Additionally, he has a range of effective inside rush counters in his arsenal.

Weaknesses: This player falls short in terms of desired mass when playing inside and length when playing outside. His rush technique can become too straight-legged at times. He also exhibits below-average closing quickness when rushing the quarterback. If his initial move is neutralized, he struggles to build momentum. In run defense, he occasionally freestyles and loses his assigned gap responsibilities. As an edge defender, he may have difficulty with containing the ball carrier due to limited range.


Height: 6′ 3”. Weight: 254 lbs.
Arm: 34 1/2”. Hand: 10”.

Prospect grade: 6.37
Next Gen stats: 80 

Production score: 77 
Athleticism score: 84 
Total score: 80 

40-Yd dash: 4.55 sec || 10-Yd split: 1.59 sec || Vert. jump: 33.5” || Broad jump: 10′ 7” || 3-Cone drill:  || 20-Yd shuttle:  || Bench press:

Player Bio: At Gulfport High School in Mississippi, Hall distinguished himself as a talented athlete, receiving all-state recognition for football, starting on the basketball team, and reaching the state finals in the 200-meter dash. As a freshman, Hall played in 11 games and started three, accumulating 13 tackles and 1.5 tackles for loss. In 2020, he played in 11 games again, recording 21 tackles and 3.5 sacks. However, Hall’s true potential was realized in his junior year when he emerged as a standout player. He earned second-team All-SEC honors in 2021 after leading Auburn with 12.5 tackles for loss, including nine sacks, along with two forced fumbles, in 13 starts. In his senior year, Hall further cemented his place as a top performer, leading Auburn with 12 tackles for loss and seven sacks, in addition to recording 60 total tackles, an interception, and two forced fumbles in 12 starts, earning him first-team all-conference honors.

Overview: Hall’s playing style is characterized by explosive bursts and a strong physical presence. He has a tenacious demeanor, often overpowering offensive tackles with his assertive power rushing abilities. However, his performance can be inconsistent when it comes to reacting to running plays and his approach to rushing can be predictable with charges down the field. Despite this, Hall’s initial contact is impactful, and he has a knack for transitioning from power rusher to a pocket vulture, making him an effective sack artist. While he is only average against the run and can be exploited in coverage, Hall’s true strength lies in his power rush, which should translate well to the NFL. Nevertheless, he would benefit from developing a more diverse approach to his rushing game.

Strengths: With tremendous character and leadership qualities, this player has served as a team captain. He displays NFL-level aggression and toughness, making him a formidable opponent. His length and power enable him to achieve instant press and separation upon impact. He possesses a quality burst when in pursuit and his pound-for-pound strength allows him to challenge much larger players. His explosive hips enable him to jar tackles and create early pocket push, making him a powerful force in the game. Once inside the pocket, he is a freight train, relentlessly pursuing the quarterback. He is also ready to void his rush and scramble with the quarterback when needed.

Weaknesses: This player’s body control when taking on blocks is average, and at times his effort level as a run defender is disappointing. He can also be somewhat robotic and inconsistent when reading play development. In terms of his down-the-middle rush approach, he needs to diversify his strategy. His hip tightness can prevent him from making tight turns at the arc, which may be a liability. Additionally, his rush momentum can be disrupted by jump-setting tackles. Finally, if he is asked to drop into coverage, he may be exploitable.


Height: 6′ 5”. Weight: 264 lbs.
Arm: 34”. Hand: 9 7/8”.

Prospect grade: 6.35
Next Gen stats: 78 

Production score: 76 
Athleticism score: 79 
Total score: 78 

40-Yd dash: 4.58 sec || 10-Yd split: 1.66 sec || Vert. jump: 34” || Broad jump: 10′ 5” || 3-Cone drill: 7.28 sec || 20-Yd shuttle: 4.41 sec || Bench press: 22 reps

Player Bio: When Foskey signed with Notre Dame from the renowned De La Salle High School in California, he was a top-210 recruit in the nation. In 2019, he appeared in four games as a substitute, tallying five tackles and a blocked punt. He then went on to be a valuable reserve in all 12 games during the 2020 season, making 20 tackles and 4.5 sacks while also recording five tackles for loss. With the departure of Adetokunbo Ogundeji and Daelin Hayes for the NFL in 2021, Foskey became the team’s primary pass rusher, starting in all 13 games, accumulating 52 total tackles, 12.5 tackles for loss, 11 sacks, and six forced fumbles. His excellent performance earned him the distinction of tying for 10th in the FBS with 11 sacks and being a second-team All-American in 2022. Foskey was also a finalist for the Ted Hendricks Award for the best defensive end in the country, having registered 45 tackles, 11 sacks (tying for sixth in the FBS), and 14 tackles for loss in 12 starts. He blocked his third and fourth punts of his career during the season, but decided to opt out of the team’s bowl game.

Overview: This edge defender charges forward with great intensity and potential for even further improvement. He primarily employs a long-arm rush tactic, complemented by a ghost move counter. However, to become a more well-rounded pass rusher, he needs to enhance his use of rush hands to collapse the edge since he lacks the necessary hip flexibility to consistently bend around offensive tackles. While his aggressive style of play and ability to cover ground should enable him to cause disruption, his shortcomings in anchoring as an edge-setter require refinement in take-on technique. Despite these minor weaknesses, his dedication to improving his craft will undoubtedly enhance his game, as evidenced by his future potential to become a starting 4-3 defensive end.

Strengths: This player possesses an innate desire to make plays and is constantly seeking opportunities to do so. With exceptional footwork, they can deftly navigate through tight spaces to penetrate gaps and disrupt plays. They quickly scan the field and determine the optimal route to pursue and take down ball carriers. Their ability to recover against run blockers is impressive, indicating excellent defensive instincts. As a rusher, their long-arm technique is effective in posting and pivoting on the edge. They have also shown potential in employing a ghost move counter to evade blockers and attack the quarterback. Notably, they have blocked four punts during their college career.

Weaknesses: This player’s build is characterized by a long, linear frame but lacks base width. They have shown inconsistency in their ability to anchor effectively and shed blocks quickly. Additionally, they often rush into first contact without setting their hands, which can leave them vulnerable to being controlled by offensive linemen. They struggle with maintaining contain duties when they allow their outside shoulder to be covered. Their short strides and tight hips also limit their effectiveness at the top of their rush. While they have potential as a rusher, they could benefit from greater aggression and forcefulness in their hand movements. Finally, when their rush stalls out, they tend to lack the ability to regroup and counter effectively.


Height: 6′ 5 1/2”. Weight: 298 lbs.
Arm: 32 1/2”. Hand: 10 1/4”.

Prospect grade: 6.35
Next Gen stats: 77 

Production score: 74 
Athleticism score: 76 
Total score: 77 

40-Yd dash: 4.86 sec || 10-Yd split: 1.71 sec || Vert. jump: 29” || Broad jump: || 3-Cone drill:  || 20-Yd shuttle:  || Bench press: 22 reps

Player Bio: The top-ranked high school football recruit in the 2020 class was a standout player at Damascus High School in Maryland, earning first-team USA Today All-American honors twice. His name is pronounced bruh-ZEE, and he appeared in 12 games during his debut season with the Clemson Tigers in 2020, starting 10 of them. In that time, he racked up 23 tackles, including 6.5 for a loss, and registered four sacks and two pass breakups. Despite suffering a torn ACL, he was named a third-team All-ACC pick in 2021, having started only the first four games of the season. The following year, he was selected as a second-team All-ACC player after playing in ten games and starting seven. Unfortunately, he was forced to miss one game after the death of his younger sister, Ella, who had passed away from brain cancer at the age of 15. Bresee also missed some time later in the season due to a kidney infection.

Overview: Bresee is a burly but agile interior tackle who exhibits a fierce determination to overpower the opposing player. He excels at avoiding extended block engagements and has a remarkable ability to stand his ground against double teams. Bresee employs subtle hand movements to put pressure on blockers, but his pass-rush skills and shedding techniques are not yet refined enough to make more significant plays in the backfield. If he manages to stay healthy and gain more experience, Bresee has the potential to become a formidable run defender who can also disrupt the pocket in his initial NFL seasons.

Strengths: Bresee has a wide, athletic physique that allows him to perform effectively in tight spaces. He displays a natural ability to read blocking schemes and responds with intelligent hand movements. Bresee uses his long and fluid strides to evade lateral reach blocks, while also possessing the strength to hold his ground against double teams. He is adept at utilizing his vision and concentration to maneuver past blockers and maintain his run fits against moves. As an interior rusher, Bresee is a dynamic threat who can confuse opponents with his stutter-steps and change of pace. He has the ability to disrupt the pocket when he anticipates the snap count.

Weaknesses: Bresee’s college production does not stand out significantly from his peers. He may occasionally struggle with slipping blocks, leading to a loss of gap leverage. While his range as a tackler is adequate, it is not particularly noteworthy. Bresee’s approach to rushing the passer can seem straightforward and lacking in sophistication. He may struggle to change directions quickly and slip past blockers around the edge. Unfortunately, Bresee suffered an ACL tear in September of 2021 and underwent shoulder surgery in January of 2022.


Height: 6′ 2”. Weight: 248 lbs.
Arm: 34 1/4”. Hand: 10 1/2”.

Prospect grade: 6.35
Next Gen stats: 75 

Production score: 80 
Athleticism score: 66 
Total score: 75 

40-Yd dash:  || 10-Yd split:  || Vert. jump: 32.5” || Broad jump: 10′ 6” || 3-Cone drill:  || 20-Yd shuttle:  || Bench press:

Player Bio: BJ Ojulari, a highly touted national recruit from Marietta High School in Georgia, has carved out his own path in football separate from that of his brother Azeez Ojulari. While Azeez excelled as a pass rusher for the Georgia Bulldogs before being drafted by the New York Giants in the second round in 2021, BJ enrolled at LSU a semester early to play as a true freshman. In his debut season, BJ made 10 appearances and started once, recording 16 tackles, five for loss, and four sacks. As a sophomore, he led the Tigers with seven sacks among his 55 total tackles, 11.5 of which were for loss, in 13 games with 12 starts. In 2022, BJ ascended to first-team All-SEC status, starting 11 games and amassing 58 tackles, 8.5 for loss, and 5.5 sacks, despite missing two early-season games due to a knee injury. While he opted out of the team’s bowl game, BJ’s performance during the season firmly established him as a rising star in college football.

Overview: B.J. Ojulari is a stand-up rush linebacker who shows potential as a pass rusher, but has been inconsistent in his efforts to stop the run. As an edge rusher, he displays impressive flexibility and agility, and has the potential to cause significant disruption in the pocket once he develops a more complete pass rush plan. In run defense, he typically maintains his containment responsibilities and possesses the speed necessary to pursue ball carriers to the sideline or make tackles in open space. However, he needs to consistently bring his best effort on every run snap to improve his overall effectiveness. With continued development and refinement of his skills, Ojulari has all the tools necessary to become a starting player at the NFL level.

Strengths: B.J. Ojulari’s brother, Azeez, was selected by the New York Giants in the second round of the 2021 NFL Draft. As a pass rusher, B.J. possesses a quick and explosive first step that enables him to gain an advantage upfield against opposing blockers. He demonstrates impressive footwork and suddenness when executing inside moves, and maintains a strong forward charge even when making contact with blockers. B.J. also utilizes a ghost move – a technique in which he shows a stab move before quickly slipping his arm away and ducking underneath the blocker – to effectively defeat outside hand positioning during his rushes. He has the ability to dip his shoulder and flatten out to reach the quarterback, and shows a strong secondary effort in his counters. Additionally, B.J. displays the necessary speed and agility to beat tackles and tight ends to their contain positions, and possesses a long stride and burst that aid in his pursuit of ball carriers.

Weaknesses: B.J. Ojulari must improve his physicality and toughness in run defense. He currently lacks the necessary strength to effectively disrupt gaps and too often allows himself to be blocked by opposing linemen. Additionally, he tends to become disengaged and passive when the ball is not directed towards him. B.J. should focus on lowering his pad level when executing inside moves to improve their effectiveness. He also needs to increase the activity and precision of his hand usage during his pass rush. Finally, he only recorded two sacks over his last eight games, indicating a need for greater consistency in generating pressure on the quarterback.


Height: 6′ 3”. Weight: 255 lbs.
Arm: 33 1/2”. Hand: 9 5/8”.

Prospect grade: 6.34
Next Gen stats: 78 

Production score: 77 
Athleticism score: 77 
Total score: 78 

40-Yd dash:  || 10-Yd split:  || Vert. jump: || Broad jump: || 3-Cone drill:  || 20-Yd shuttle:  || Bench press:

Player Bio: During his senior year at Lee’s Summit High School in Kansas City, Missouri, Anudike-Uzomah received first-team all-state honors. After playing as a reserve in five games and registering three tackles and one sack in his first year at Kansas State, he had a remarkable second year, sharing the Big 12 Conference Co-Defensive Lineman of the Year award with Iowa State’s Will McDonald IV. In this breakout season, he tied for the FBS lead with six forced fumbles and ranked 10th with 11 sacks, in addition to making 51 tackles and 14.5 tackles for loss in 12 starts. Although he appeared to have tied an NCAA record with six sacks against TCU, the NCAA determined that two of those sacks did not count as pass plays because the fumbles he forced went past the line of scrimmage. In 2022, he had another excellent season, starting in 14 games and earning third-team Associated Press All-American and Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year honors. He led the team with 11 tackles for loss and 8.5 sacks, and was also a finalist for the Ted Hendricks Award and Lott IMPACT Trophy, which recognize players for their integrity, maturity, performance, academics, community involvement, and tenacity.

Overview: Anudike-Uzomah is an edge prospect known for his hard-charging style. He possesses good strength and a long frame that has potential for further development. While his run defense is still a work in progress and could benefit from improved fundamentals, he has demonstrated his ability to adapt and improve in his pass-rush approach, incorporating new techniques in 2022. His high-energy style leads to opportunities for making big plays, but he will need to learn to better control his aggression and play with more efficiency to become a more effective defender. Although he still requires more refinement, Anudike-Uzomah has the potential to become an NFL starter due to his ability to rush the passer at a high level.

Strengths: Anudike-Uzomah is an intense and urgent player who approaches each snap with a high level of focus. He plans his pass-rush strategy before the snap and executes it with precision. His repertoire of rush moves is diverse and includes multiple options that he can choose from. As a bull rusher, he effectively utilizes his length to push back opposing linemen. He quickly transitions from run defense to rushing the passer when necessary, displaying good situational awareness. When making tackles, he explodes into the opponent’s pads with heavy hands, using his powerful hips to knock run blockers off balance. He is also able to track down runners and make tackles from difficult angles, demonstrating his agility and versatility as a defender.

Weaknesses: Anudike-Uzomah’s lower half appears to lack the necessary looseness and flexibility, which can affect his overall play. Although he shows promise as a pass-rusher, he will need to improve his ability to counter offensive linemen’s moves more instinctively. His playing style can lead to a lack of balance, which can negatively impact his effectiveness on the field. He struggles with inconsistent vision when fighting off blockers, which can make it difficult for him to anticipate the direction of the play. His point of attack technique needs improvement, as it is currently below par. Specifically, he needs to work on maintaining disciplined footwork and a wider base to become a more effective defender.


Height: 6′ 3”. Weight: 323 lbs.
Arm: 33 3/4”. Hand: 9 3/4”.

Prospect grade: 6.34
Next Gen stats: 77 

Production score: 69 
Athleticism score: 90 
Total score: 77 

40-Yd dash:  || 10-Yd split:  || Vert. jump: || Broad jump: || 3-Cone drill:  || 20-Yd shuttle:  || Bench press: 34 reps

Player Bio: Smith, a highly sought-after four-star recruit and top-50 prospect, was a standout player at East Kentwood High School in Michigan prior to enrolling at the University of Michigan. After redshirting his first year and making appearances in only two games with no statistics, he saw action in five games off the bench in 2020, tallying three tackles and one tackle for loss. The following year, he started all 14 games and earned honorable mention All-Big Ten Conference recognition with 37 tackles, 2.5 tackles for loss, and four pass breakups. In 2022, he was named a first-team All-Big Ten player after starting in all 14 games and registering 48 tackles, 2.5 tackles for loss. However, in October of that same year, he was arrested for possessing a concealed weapon without a valid license to carry one, after being stopped by the police for speeding. Smith maintained that he was in the process of obtaining the necessary permit when he was pulled over. He pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor and was given probation. Smith’s grandfather, Carl, was a pioneer in the Black freedom movement, founding a newspaper called “The Organizer” in the 1960s and working for the Michigan Department of Civil Rights. Additionally, Sekou Smith, his mother’s first cousin, was a respected NBA writer for ESPN before his untimely death in 2021.

Overview: While Dontari Poe might be a fair comparison for Smith in terms of physicality and athleticism, Smith still needs to work on his consistency if he hopes to earn a Pro Bowl nod, a feat that Poe achieved twice in his career. Smith possesses a rare combination of size and quickness, which enables him to handle base blocks with ease. However, he tends to struggle with the initial movement of move blockers, leading to a reduction in his effectiveness on the field. While he has the potential to occupy significant space on the defensive line, he needs to improve his ability to handle double teams and maintain his gap. Although Smith’s size and athleticism could make him an attractive pick in the draft, he is more likely a Day 2 prospect with high potential rather than a starter who can immediately make an impact.

Strengths: He boasts a unique blend of size and athleticism, and his lower half is both flexible and sturdy. He possesses the strength to deliver a powerful punch, lifting blockers off their pads with ease. He displays nimble footwork and impressive short-area quickness, allowing him to move fluidly on the field and quickly seize gaps. Smith can disrupt blocking schemes by pulling and yanking guards off-balance from any angle. His foot speed makes him a valuable asset in a twisting rush unit, allowing him to navigate the field with agility and tenacity.

Weaknesses: Smith has struggled to make plays behind the line of scrimmage, and his motor tends to slow down when the tempo of the game picks up. He often reacts slowly to movements on the field, which can result in him being sealed off from making important plays. In particular, he struggled to defend against Iowa’s zone scheme attack. Additionally, he has exhibited an inconsistent ability to anchor himself against double teams. Due to these limitations, it is unlikely that he will be used extensively in passing situations at the professional level.


Height: 6′ 2”. Weight: 238 lbs.
Arm: 32 5/8”. Hand: 9”.

Prospect grade: 6.33
Next Gen stats: 80 

Production score: 78 
Athleticism score: 85 
Total score: 80 

40-Yd dash: 4.39 sec || 10-Yd split: 1.52 sec || Vert. jump: 41.5” || Broad jump: 10′ 8” || 3-Cone drill:  || 20-Yd shuttle:  || Bench press:

Player Bio: 247Sports Composite named Smith the top overall prospect in the 2019 recruiting class. He hails from Georgia and attended IMG Academy for two years, where he was recognized as the recipient of the Maxwell Club’s Defensive Player of the Year award during his senior year. In 2019, Smith earned co-winner of the Bulldogs’ Defensive Newcomer of the Year award after recording 18 tackles and 2.5 sacks. He began the 2020 season with only one start out of 10 games but managed 22 tackles and 2.5 sacks. However, Smith made a significant breakthrough in 2021, starting in 14 games for the national champions and leading the team with three forced fumbles. He ended the season with 56 tackles, nine for loss, 3.5 sacks, and one interception. Smith continued his strong performance into the Bulldogs’ 2022 title campaign, starting in the first eight games and recording 18 tackles, seven for loss, and three sacks before being sidelined due to a season-ending torn pectoral muscle.

Overview: Despite being a lower weight class edge defender, Smith possesses the toughness required to hold his own against bigger players. Although his slender frame might suggest that he is better suited for rushing the passer than defending against the run, he is actually quite effective at the latter. Smith’s technique and leverage make it difficult for opposing players to move him off his spot, and he can create disruption by attacking gaps. While he is quick off the line of scrimmage as a pass rusher, he lacks the ability to consistently penetrate the pocket due to his limited counters and contact balance. Although Smith may not meet the size requirements of some teams looking for a 3-4 outside linebacker, he is a team-oriented player with high-quality technique that should translate well to the professional level.

Strengths: Smith is a team-oriented player with excellent toughness. He excels at attacking pulling blocks and uses his hands effectively to separate and maintain readiness. Despite his size, he possesses rare strength in terms of leverage at the point of attack. He takes a direct and efficient route to the ball during pursuit, cutting a tight track. Furthermore, Smith has the potential to develop into a bend-and-flatten pass rusher. He has the agility required for more diverse edge-to-edge attacks in the future.

Weaknesses: Smith’s waist and hips are slender, indicating a need for increased mass. He struggles to convert his speed into power effectively. Moreover, his pass-rushing tactics can be monotonous and lacking in counters. A squared-up punch from a tackle can disrupt his pass rush, and he struggles to quickly shed blocks. Smith puts in excessive effort to contend with tackles at the point of attack. Additionally, his pursuit speed is average, which is a disadvantage for a smaller player.


Height: 6′ 4”. Weight: 309 lbs.
Arm: 33 7/8”. Hand: 9 3/4”.

Prospect grade: 6.25
Next Gen stats: 71 

Production score: 70 
Athleticism score: 76 
Total score: 71 

40-Yd dash: 5.08 sec || 10-Yd split: 1.79 sec || Vert. jump: 29.5” || Broad jump: 9′ 3” || 3-Cone drill: 7.34 sec || 20-Yd shuttle: 4.65 sec || Bench press: 25 reps

Player Bio: Growing up just 45 minutes away from Camp Randall, Keeanu Benton attended Janesville Craig High School where he earned all-state honors and qualified twice for the Wisconsin state wrestling meet. As a true freshman in 2019, he started in six games and recorded 12 tackles, four of which were for a loss, with two sacks in 13 games. In 2020, he played in five games, making eight tackles in seven contests. During the 2021 season, Benton’s impressive performance in 13 starts didn’t go unnoticed by Big Ten coaches, who recognized him as a second-team all-conference player. He had 25 tackles, five of which were for a loss, with 2.5 sacks and two pass breakups, and helped lead the nation’s top rushing defense. In his senior year, he started in 12 games and was named a third-team selection. He recorded 35 stops, 10 of which were for a loss, with 4.5 sacks and two pass breakups. Benton decided to opt out of the team’s bowl game to focus on preparing for the draft.

Overview: Keeanu Benton is a formidable interior defensive lineman who possesses size and relentless determination. However, to succeed at the professional level, he must exhibit consistent explosiveness early in each play to secure decisive victories at the point of attack. Occasionally, Benton’s block engagements turn into prolonged battles, but he usually manages to break free and position himself near the ball carrier. Nevertheless, his lack of a broad base and sturdy anchor leaves him vulnerable to being pushed around by double teams, so he must work on improving his pad level. Although Benton has demonstrated solid skills and the potential to become a starter, he must consistently be a more forceful presence in the middle to establish himself as a prominent NFL player.

Strengths: This player has been a full-time starter for most of his four seasons, demonstrating a strong, sturdy frame with excellent length and proportional thickness. His brute force allows him to easily toss angle blocks out of the way, and his initial punch is enough to shake the center’s pads. It is very difficult to knock him off his feet, and he fights his way back into the play even after facing initial adversity. His clubbing and heavy hands also make it difficult for pass sets to maintain their balance.

Weaknesses: This player’s snap quickness into the neutral zone is below average. He also lacks the necessary hip flexion to achieve the desired base width when playing on the inside. He tends to be slow to react and move with the blocker’s initial reach steps, and when his pad level is off, he is easily pushed off his position. His ability to corkscrew his post leg to take on double teams is inconsistent, and he has a very limited tackle window, primarily relying on being an A-gap finisher. As a rusher, he is slow-moving once he gets inside the pocket.


Height: 6′ 2”. Weight: 250 lbs.
Arm: 32 1/2”. Hand: 9 1/4”.

Prospect grade: 6.25
Next Gen stats: 69 

Production score: 66 
Athleticism score: 82 
Total score: 69 

40-Yd dash: 4.43 sec || 10-Yd split: 1.62 sec || Vert. jump: 38” || Broad jump: 11′ 0” || 3-Cone drill: 7.19 sec || 20-Yd shuttle:  || Bench press: 22 reps

Player Bio: After graduating from Carvers Bay High School in South Carolina, Young took an 18-month break from football and worked as an assistant manager at Dollar General in Columbus, Georgia. However, he soon found his way back to the sport and tried out for the team at Georgia Military College, where he made an immediate impact with seven sacks in his first year. Despite the team not playing in 2020 due to COVID-19 concerns, Young’s performance earned him recognition as a top-15 overall junior college recruit. Upon transferring to Tennessee, Young wasted no time making an impact, leading the team with 11.5 tackles for loss and 5.5 sacks in his first season while starting eight of eleven games. As a senior, he received first-team All-SEC honors after leading the team with seven sacks and 12 tackles for loss among his 37 tackles.

Overview: Despite his explosive edge rushing abilities and disruptive play, Young is still in the process of developing his skills as a defensive player. He currently lacks skill in his rush hands and needs to develop go-to counters, but this is an area that can be improved with coaching. When he uses his quick first step to slant and twist, he creates chaos for opposing offenses, but he still needs to work on refining his stack-and-shed technique and building a more cohesive rush approach. At 25 years old, he may lack the level of polish that some teams desire in a rookie, but he possesses a strong desire to make plays and a motor that is always running, which gives him potential to succeed as a professional player.

Strengths: Young boasts a chiseled, athletic physique with proportional length that helps him play with a great motor and determination. He is a twitchy athlete with the ability to make sudden changes of direction, and he fires out of his stance with a strong, leveraged punch. His elite first-step quickness allows him to disrupt gaps and make an impact as a pass rusher. He also possesses hustle and burst that enables him to collect sacks with secondary rush. His slashing quickness is especially effective for executing successful tackle/end twists. While primarily known for his prowess as a pass rusher, Young has also displayed brief splashes of impressive man cover skills on tape.

Weaknesses: Young has a muscular build, but he lacks pure mass in his lower half. His contact balance at the point of attack is average, and he struggles with below-average technique to stack and shed blocks. While he possesses quick feet, he needs to improve his hand usage to catch up to his footwork. He also needs to develop a wider range of moves and counters for his rush technique. Young is not a natural bend-and-corner rusher, and his hands tend to be flailing and unfocused at the top of his rush.


Height: 6′ 4”. Weight: 291 lbs.
Arm: 34 3/8”. Hand: 10 3/8”.

Prospect grade: 6.24
Next Gen stats: 67 

Production score: 63 
Athleticism score: 74 
Total score: 67 

40-Yd dash: 4.89 sec || 10-Yd split: 1.74 sec || Vert. jump: 30.5” || Broad jump: 9′ 8” || 3-Cone drill: 7.45 sec || 20-Yd shuttle: 4.62 sec || Bench press: 22 reps

Overview: Pickens is an athletic interior defender with ample experience and length as a gap-control tackle. However, his quickness and play traits suggest he might be better-suited to attacking upfield. With his disruptive first step, Pickens is able to create advantages for himself as both a run defender and pass rusher. He showcases harmonious hand and foot movements to evade blockers or play off them, though he may be susceptible to being moved around by NFL drive blockers. Pickens is versatile enough to play both tackle spots in a one-gapping front and has the potential to see starter’s reps, but also offers rotational value.

Strengths: With above average arm length and quick hands, this player excels at recognizing and responding to blocking schemes early. They are able to separate from defenders and maintain balance through contact, thanks to their one-gap athleticism and foot quickness. Their ability to work suddenly off blocks enables them to tackle their gaps effectively. Additionally, they possess impressive first-step quickness in their rush, and can effectively tie in a long-arm move with counter steps to open pathways to the pocket. Finally, this player keeps their feet and hands active throughout the rush charge.

Weaknesses: This player has an average frame, but their anchor as a two-gapper is below average. They tend to give up ground to quality drive blockers, and are unlikely to have an NFL-caliber bull rush. Moreover, their elevated pad level can get their rush redirected, which limits their effectiveness on the field.


Height: 6′ 3”. Weight: 335 lbs.
Arm: 32 3/8”. Hand: 10 1/4”.

Prospect grade: 6.23
Next Gen stats: 63 

Production score: 68 
Athleticism score: 55 
Total score: 63 

40-Yd dash: 5.39 sec || 10-Yd split: 1.88 sec || Vert. jump: || Broad jump: || 3-Cone drill: 7.8 sec || 20-Yd shuttle: 4.99 sec || Bench press:

Overview: Ika possesses a substantial interior force, characterized by his stout frame and combative nature when engaging at the point of attack. He excels in controlling gaps, owing to his wide body and sturdy anchor. Although primarily suited to occupy blockers as an odd or even front nose tackle, Ika also possesses the agility and explosiveness to disrupt offensive plays when facing single blocking assignments. While his pass-rushing opportunities may be limited, Ika demonstrates sufficient athleticism and hand technique to occasionally pressure the pocket. With proper weight management, Ika has the potential to start early and bolster a team’s struggling run defense.

Strengths: With explosive hip movement and strong leverage, this player powerfully collides with the opposition at first contact. Their initial punch is forceful enough to drive through the opponent’s pads, and they have a keen ability to recognize down blocks. However, they may require assistance to be extracted from gaps. This player possesses impressive power and snap quickness, enabling them to penetrate and disrupt play design. Additionally, their initial slide quickness is adequate for creating viable rush angles. They often utilize a combination of shoves and clubs to eliminate the blocker’s punch by targeting their wrists and hands. Furthermore, this player displays above-average athleticism, especially considering their size.

Weaknesses: This player requires improvement in their technique when facing double teams. They tend to drop their head while engaging the block, which results in them losing sight of the ball. Additionally, they may become unbalanced by getting too far over their feet. During the 2022 Oklahoma game, this player was frequently taken down to the ground. Furthermore, they lack quickness in changing direction to tackle runners who cut back. As a pass rusher, there was a noticeable decline in their ability to pressure the pocket in 2022.


Height: 6′ 2”. Weight: 282 lbs.
Arm: 33 7/8”. Hand: 10 1/2”.

Prospect grade: 6.12
Next Gen stats: 74 

Production score: 59 
Athleticism score: 97 
Total score: 74 

40-Yd dash: 4.49 sec || 10-Yd split: 1.61 sec || Vert. jump: 37.5” || Broad jump: 10′ 5” || 3-Cone drill:  || 20-Yd shuttle:  || Bench press: 27 reps

Player Bio: North Kansas City High School graduate, Adetomiwa Adebawore, was a standout football player and track athlete, winning a state title in the shot put and earning first-team all-state honors for football. He started his college football career as a true freshman, playing in eight games and earning four starts, with a total of six tackles and one sack. In his sophomore year, he started all nine games and made 17 tackles, six of which were for a loss, and he earned two sacks and two pass breakups. Adebawore continued to shine in 2021, earning honorable mention All-Big Ten Conference recognition, after leading Northwestern University with 8.5 tackles for loss and 4.5 sacks, while also contributing three pass breakups and two forced fumbles in 12 games. In 2022, Adebawore led the Wildcats with five sacks and recorded 38 total tackles, nine for loss, and two forced fumbles in 12 games, once again earning honorable mention all-conference honors.

Overview: Adebawore appears to be a versatile player who does not fit neatly into a specific position. He is slightly undersized for the edge position and a bit light for the interior. However, he demonstrated his ability to hold his ground at the point of attack during the Senior Bowl and could potentially bulk up to become a viable three-technique defender in an even front. He relies on his strength and power to win battles rather than agility and finesse. He will need to improve his ability to read plays in the future, but his explosive first contact and low pad level make him a candidate to play as a base end with the ability to rush in sub-packages or as a rotational interior defender.

Strengths: The player demonstrates good technique by engaging blockers with the proper pad level, which allows him to maintain a low center of gravity and better leverage. He exhibits explosive power in both his upper and lower body, allowing him to make quick movements and burst through gaps. He is particularly effective at crossing the face of tackles and making plays in the B-gap. He also possesses a quick punch-and-release move that enables him to slip past blockers with ease. Although his pass-rushing moves are subtle, they prove to be effective in getting to the blocker’s edge. Additionally, he utilizes his leverage and hip strength to power through redirect blocks.

Weaknesses: The player falls short of the typical height and length for a defensive end. He tends to focus too much on engaging with blocks rather than shedding them, which limits his ability to make plays. His awareness and instincts are below average, and his ability to pursue runners towards the sideline is just average. Furthermore, he struggles with missed tackles, which can be detrimental to his team’s defense. His hips are tight, which limits his ability to maneuver and improve his pass-rushing angles. Additionally, when facing offensive tackles with long arms and strong hands, his pass-rushing strategies are often quickly derailed.


Height: 6′ 6”. Weight: 310 lbs.
Arm: 32 1/4”. Hand: 9 1/2”.

Prospect grade: 6.00
Next Gen stats: 69 

Production score: 69 
Athleticism score: 70 
Total score: 69 

40-Yd dash: 4.88 sec || 10-Yd split: 1.81 sec || Vert. jump: 31 || Broad jump: 9′ 2” || 3-Cone drill: 7.5 sec || 20-Yd shuttle:  || Bench press: 22 reps

Player Bio: Despite only playing football for two years at Lake Wales High School in Florida, Dexter displayed impressive talent by recording 18 sacks during his senior year. Alongside his football achievements, he also excelled on the basketball court, starting for four years, and even qualified for the state track meet in the discus throw. During his first year with the Gators, Dexter made an impact by starting twice and making 19 tackles, 1.5 of which were for loss, and intercepting one pass in 12 games. The following year, in 2021, he continued to show promise as a playmaker, recording 51 tackles, four for loss, and 2.5 sacks in 13 games, with nine starts. Dexter’s performance in his junior season in 2022 was even more impressive, as he started all 13 games and made 55 tackles, four for loss, and two sacks, as well as intercepting a pass.

Overview: Dexter’s tendency to start slowly off the snap often affects his hand placement and positioning in a negative way. Although his size and athletic abilities enable him to make plays even after being blocked early in the rep, he will need to improve his hand usage in the professional leagues. As a pass rusher, he has below-average quickness and technique, but he has the potential to become more effective if the play extends. Despite his limitations, Dexter’s impressive physical profile could make him an attractive prospect for teams, particularly those utilizing a 3-4 defense. With proper coaching and development, he could become a more consistent performer at the next level.

Strengths: With an NFL-ready frame and impressive size, he possesses a physique that catches the eye. He has shown potential in two-gapping, with room for growth. He can maintain proper alignment with the line of scrimmage and stay disciplined with gap assignments. His upper-body twitch allows him to make sudden block sheds, and he can slide through gaps by utilizing an upper-body turn. His size and length make him a valuable asset in opening up protection edges. As a rusher, he has an effortless transition from bull rush to swim moves.

Weaknesses: He tends to start slowly off the ball, lacking explosive first contact as a bull rusher. To become a better pocket threat, he will need to develop a reliable go-to move. He often allows run blockers to initiate the action, which puts him on the back foot. He struggles to disengage from blocks in a timely manner, which limits his effectiveness. Double teams tend to overwhelm him, and he can be taken for a ride. He shows a willingness to play under stretch blocks rather than fighting for better positioning, which could be an area for improvement.

“Everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about. Be kind. Always.”


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