Powerful player with good size and holds up well at the point of attack. Hard to push off the ball. Shows some burst and moves well for his size. Can use the swim move to get upfield and shoot gaps to get penetration. Also shows good power move able to get his hands inside and drive the center backwards as a nose tackle. Has a pretty good motor and will work to finish the play as a pass rusher. Shows ability to make plays laterally down the line in pursuit as well.
Does not use his hands very well, and thus can get pushed around and redirected a bit too easily by centers and guards. Needs to do a better job getting off blocks. Lacks range and his first step is lacking. This lack of an ideal first step limits how much push he can get when he does use his bull rush. Won't be much of a factor as a pass rusher because of his lack of quickness tending to rely on his power to beat blockers.
NJB is a good power player that helped replace what Phil Taylor brought to the Baylor defense last season. He is not nearly the player that Taylor was, but he's a solid player that fits well as a run stuffer in a two-gap scheme. He just doesn't offer enough potential or abilty as a pass rusher to think he really fits well in a 4-3 scheme. He's a former walk-on.
2011 GAMES WATCHED:
(9/2) vs. TCU: 2 TFL, 1 stuff, 1 pressure, 1 Hit, 1 PD
(12/3) vs. Texas: 0.5 TFL, 0.5 sack, 1.5 stuff, 1 pressure
(12/29) vs. Washington: 0.5 TFL
2011: 13 GP/12 GS, 36 tackles, 8.5 TFL, 4.0 sacks, 0 FF, 1 FR, 0 INT, 3 PD, 1 block
- missed bowl game in 2010 due to knee injury
Jean-Baptiste should be able to contribute for a 3-4 team looking for a nose tackle. That is where his highest potential lies. While he can give good reps and minutes to a 4-3 team, he's probably really too heavy to be more than a two-down defender. And while that can be valuable in a rotation, he just doesn't offer the upside as an everydown defender to really be that valued as a starter. Not unless he drops some weight and slims down to get some quickness back into his game. I think he can add depth for a 3-4 team as well, but also offer enough ability and upside to think that by the time he's ready for his second contract he might be able to start for some team. But more than likely, he'll remain a backup and be a guy that can split reps with a starter and give you good minutes as a role player. If he can improve his technique and show better hand use, then he can develop into what is considered a very valuable role player. Otherwise, he may wind up becoming more of the journeyman type that teams can plug into their lineup when injuries hit, but doesn't quite play at a level that keeps him in one place for more than a few seasons.
Again, the 4-3 would not be an ideal scheme for Jean-Baptiste because he won't be able to give you consistent pressure as a pass rusher. But if the Falcons were to try and use him in their rotation primarily on run downs and then potentially develop into a more of a 3-4 or hybrid scheme down the road, he offers good potential there. Initially, it's hard to see NJB being more than a fourth guy in the rotation that would just be a heavier version of Vance Walker. But down the road, if his technique and hands develop, he could be a much more consistent player than Walker is and be a valuable role player for the team on run downs.
Jean-Baptiste is more of a depth option for most teams but projects as a potential mid-round pick because there is some upside as a starter that could be developed down the road. The problem is that the team that drafts him may not reap those benefits. So probably the earliest he should go off the board is probably in the fifth round to a 3-4 team looking for a developmental backup. For a 4-3 team, they probably are better served waiting until the seventh round if they are looking for a two-down run stuffer.
1-pathetic, 2-poor, 3-weak, 4-below average, 5-average, 6-above average, 7-good, 8-very good, 9-excellent, 10-elite
Point of Attack: 7.0
Pass Rush: 4.0
"Vincere scis, Hannibal, victoria uti nescis" -- Maharbal, 216 B.C.E.