40: 5.10 (estimated)
Disruptive playmaker that has a good combo of power and quickness. Flashes a dangerous first step and can close on the quarterback to make the sack. Has good range and a disruptive playmaker that gets penetration and makes the stop in the backfield. Has a thick lower body, and shows potential to anchor. Does a good job using his first step to get leverage vs. the run. Can get off blocks and make stops at the point of attack. Has a good motor and chases ballcarriers downfield. Very difficult to block one on one. Has a good power move, and will drive the center in the backfield. Can also bowl over lesser guards.
Doesn't consistently get off blocks. Needs to improve his hand use and technique there. Doesn't have an array of pass rush moves, and tends to rely on his quickness and pure strength to beat the blocker.
Liuget is just like his last name is pronounced: "Legit." He has a very good combo of size, power, and quickness to be a dominant interior player at the next level. He plays DT in Illinois hybrid scheme, often playing defensive end when they go to a 3-man front, and playing the 3-technique in a 4-man front. But he flashes the sort of size and power that could make him a dominant nose tackle in a one-gap scheme. At this point, he is a better run defender than pure pass rusher, but has upside to develop in the latter. Still very young, as he'll turn 21 in March. Struggled with conditioning early his career, which prevented him from being the full-time starter. Played in 23 games his first two seasons combined, with 6 starts, tallying 62 tackles, 13 tackles for loss, 4 sacks, 4 pass breakups, and 3 hurries as a backup nose tackle. As the full-time starter his junior year, he had 63 tackles, 12.5 tackles for loss, 4.5 sacks, 3 breakups, and 10 hurries, basically matching his two-year totals if not exceeding them. Dropped some weight prior to his junior year, which helped conditioning. Reportedly was up around 315 pounds, before slimming down.
Liuget projects best in a one-gap scheme where he can use his power and quickness to be a disruptive presence both vs. the pass and run. He has top potential as a pass rusher, but whether he develops there will depend on how much he can improve his technique, hand use, and add some good moves inside. But more than likely, he'll be the type of guy that can give you 3-5 sacks most years, and may occasionally have a 7 or 8 sack season. Liuget also has the potential to play in a 3-4 scheme at defensive end or nose tackle. He's more in line with the quicker, penetrating nose tackles like Jay Ratliff rather than a guy that is going to eat space. But as far as playing DE in a 3-4, there is some Cullen Jenkins-like potential. He's definitely going to be a good pro, assuming he has no major issues with conditioning or injuries from this point forward. It's more a question how good he can be. He has potential to be one of the more dominant interior defenders as a 4-3 guy. I think there is Haynesworth-like potential to dominate games and slant the field for other defenders. But at the very least, I expect him to be as good a starter as someone like Brandon Mebane and be effective most weeks.
Liuget could be a dominant defender in the interior of the Falcons line. He is gifted enough physically that he could win the starting job beside Babineaux as a rookie, and if he impacts quickly could give the Falcons one of the more feared interior lines in the league. But more than likely, Liuget will take some development and work his way off the bench early in his career. By the time that Babineaux starts to really slow down two or so years from now, that should be the point where Liuget is ready to take off and fill his shoes as the Falcons impact interior defender. He fits well in the Falcons attacking scheme and be a disruptive playmaker. Playing in a rotation early in his Falcon career should allow him to pick and choose his spots, and as he develops and gets increased playing time he can be a more consistent impact player snap to snap.
Liuget's potential makes him worth a middle first round pick, although he's not quite as polished a pass rusher to really solidify him as a Top 10 candidate.
1-poor, 2-weak, 3-above average, 4-very good, 5-elite
Point Of Attack: 3.5
Pass Rush: 3.0
"Vincere scis, Hannibal, victoria uti nescis" -- Maharbal, 216 B.C.E.