Pros: He has a quick first step that is very good when allowed to pin his ears back and go after the quarterback. Has good strength, and occasionally shows ability to beat blockers and make plays vs. the run. Has the quickness to get leverage vs. the run. Does a nice job penetrating and making plays in the backfield.
Cons: Inconsistent and has a questionable motor when playing the run. Needs to improve at the point of attack, and struggles when you run right at him. Doesn't consistently get off blocks. He tends to wear down late in games. Overly relies on his quickness and lacks pass rush moves.
Overview: He's a raw talent with a knack for pass rushing. He was constantly in the coach's doghouse. He was suspended for academics for almost all of 2007, playing in only 2 games. He had a blocked kick, 0.5 sacks, and 9 tackles in that brief appearance. Was expected to fill the void left by Dorsey in 2008, but didn't live up to the hype and wasn't very productive as a junior. Also was on LSU's track and field team as a shot-putter his final two years.
NFL Forecast: He's a boom/bust prospect that could become a really good pass rusher at the next level, or be out of the league within four or so seasons. He has the versatility to play some end in the 3-4, which he could become an effective starter. But I think he'll more like Marcus Spears, who has been a disappointment for the Cowboys. I'm not sure he'll be an impact player there, just a serviceable starter. I think his best bet may be playing as a situational pass rusher in the 4-3 scheme as an
under tackle. There he can be developed to become a more consistent starter. He's the type of guy with the potential to be a 5-8-sack guy as an interior pass rusher. He needs to improve his technique, get better vs. the run, and play much harder.
ATL Forecast: He could definitely help the Falcons pass rush. His potential makes him worthwhile to develop as a backup to Babineaux. Could serve as a backup for a few years and then potentially take over once Babineaux starts to slow down around age 30 or so. He'll help the Falcons rotation, but may be hard-pressed to land a starting spot. The Falcons should draft him with the intention of him helping the rotation than being a starter.
Value: His pass rush potential alone is on par with first round talent, but he's too inconsistent to risk a first day pick on. Instead take him in the fourth round.
Scouting Reports of defensive tackles in the 2009 NFL Draft
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