Continuing our primer series heading into the NFL Scouting Combine just two short weeks away, we’re looking today at the defensive linemen.
Now, it’s important as a reader to understand when the NFL released their combine participants, they didn’t separate EDGE rushers. So, everyone is either a defensive lineman or a linebacker. If your favorite EDGE guy isn’t here, we should get to him when we preview the linebackers in the near future.
On the combine’s website, they are separated by linemen, EDGE and linebackers. So if you’re interested in that breakdown, head on over and check it out.
First things first, let’s introduce you to the trench defenders who will be showing off their skills in Indianapolis this year.
2019 COMBINE DEFENSIVE LINEMEN
|ZACH ALLEN||BOSTON COLLEGE|
|NICK BOSA||OHIO STATE|
|JORDAN BRAILFORD||OKLAHOMA STATE|
|BRIAN BURNS||FLORIDA STATE|
|MALIK CARNEY||NORTH CAROLINA|
|DEMARCUS CHRISTMAS||FLORIDA STATE|
|MAXX CROSBY||EASTERN MICHIGAN|
|JAYLON FERGUSON||LOUISIANA TECH|
|KEVIN GIVENS||PENN STATE|
|GERRI GREEN||MISSISSIPPI STATE|
|TRYSTEN HILL||CENTRAL FLORIDA|
|DARRYL JOHNSON||NORTH CAROLINA A&T|
|DRE'MONT JONES||OHIO STATE|
|KINGSLEY KEKE||TEXAS A&M|
|DAYLON MACK||TEXAS A&M|
|SHAREEF MILLER||PENN STATE|
|WYATT RAY||BOSTON COLLEGE|
|KHALEN SAUNDERS||WESTERN ILLINOIS|
|SUTTON SMITH||NORTHERN ILLINOIS|
|MONTEZ SWEAT||MISSISSIPPI STATE|
|JERRY TILLERY||NOTRE DAME|
|RENELL WREN||ARIZONA STATE|
|OSHANE XIMINES||OLD DOMINION|
BEST IN CLASS: QUINNEN WILLIAMS, ALABAMA
This is a little harder to decide because interior and exterior defensive linemen are not created equal.
However, I think if you compare prospect to prospect, Williams is just a tad higher than Nick Bosa of Ohio State. If anything, the fact we haven’t seen Bosa in a while and don’t know yet just how he’ll look coming off his injury is one big reason Williams gets the edge here.
MOST TO PROVE: MONTEZ SWEAT, MISSISSIPPI STATE
Sweat is in a bad place to be heading into the scouting combine, he’s a one-tick pony. Now, his one trick is pretty good, but to be successful at the next level he’s going to have to get better in some key areas.
This is his first big chance to show NFL teams he’s already working on those areas, and if he does it’ll help his draft stock. If he comes in as stiff as he’s looked thus far, then some teams are going to be discouraged.
He’ll still have his pro day and will certainly get his fair share of private workouts, but this is a big chance on a highly publicized stage to show he’s already addressing some of those concerns rather than relying solely on what he already does well.
MOST LIKELY BUCS DRAFT PICK: CHARLES OMENIHU (TEXAS)
There are questions to the overall polish on Omenihu’s game, but there’s no doubt he’s got the build and athleticism to get the job done.
As a day-two pick, Omenihu would provide the Buccaneers defensive line some depth and energy who could play early on in key situations and packages designed to accentuate what he does best.
The concern here is he may improve his draft stock to the point where he lands in the gap where Tampa Bay doesn’t currently have a pick.