Pros: Has nice size and strength and shows ability to get leverage vs. the run. Shows a nice first step and ﬂashes edge speed.
Cons: Can be inconsistent at times vs. the run, getting pushed around and struggling to get off blocks. Not effective pass rusher when he lines up in the 5-technique. Lacks pass rush moves.
Overview: Melton was the other guy at Texas, and was capable, but unspectacular player. He's a decent edge rusher, that shows size and strength to play the run. Started his Longhorn career at running back, before moving to defensive end as a junior. Had 625 career rushing yards and 16 touchdowns. In his lone year as a starting end (senior year), he had 4 sacks and 29 tackles. His uncle is former Broncos corner Ray Crockett.
NFL Forecast: Will probably be destined to become a run-stopper at LDE than anything else. Is a decent pass rusher, but unless he really improves his technique and adds some moves, he won't be an impact guy. The type of guy that could consistently get 3-5 sacks a year, but that's about it. Suspect just like in college, he'll be best playing opposite a good pass rusher. He can be a nice starter at the next level, but lacks the elite upside to be anything special. The type of guy that can start and get the majority of snaps, but would work best in a strong rotation rather than as the guy.
ATL Forecast: Melton would be a nice developmental left end behind Chauncey Davis. He has a bit more potential as an edge rusher than Davis since he's a better athlete, but at this point in his career, wouldn't be much of an upgrade on passing downs. If he becomes a more consistent run stopper, could develop into a nice starter for the Falcons, but won't be an impact starter.
Value: Melton is a nice middle to late round pick. Probably the earliest you take him is the fifth, although it wouldn't be a crazy reach in the late fourth.
Scouting Reports of defensive ends in the 2009 NFL Draft.
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