Next up on our series of potential NFL Draft targets is Osa Odighizuwa, an undersized defensive tackle who could be a valuable asset as a depth piece or a rotational interior pass-rusher.
The former UCLA Bruin may not carry the traditional size of an interior lineman, but he showed everyone at the Senior Bowl that this didn’t seem to have much of an effect on him as he delivered a dominant performance.
Let’s take a look at what he’s done up to this point in his career and what he could bring to Tampa Bay.
OSA ODIGHIZUWA COLLEGIATE CAREER
Odighizuwa spent five years at UCLA and racked up 120 total tackles, 27.5 tackles for loss, and 11.5 sacks after being red-shirted in 2016. While these may not stand out as fantastic four year numbers, four of his 11.5 career sacks came as a senior in only seven games.
This standout senior year led to him earning a first team All-Pac-12 Conference selection and an invite to the Senior Bowl. At the Senior Bowl, Odighizuwa showed off his power, explosiveness, and raw athleticism which piqued the interest of those in attendance.
While he may have been listed as a defensive tackle on the UCLA depth chart, he has experience in every position on the defensive line which is demonstrative of his versatility. The Bruins tasked him with playing nose tackle, the three and five technique, and even asked him to rush off the edge.
PRO DAY DATA AND ANALYSIS
UCLA hosted their Pro Day earlier this month and Odighizuwa didn’t disappoint. Here are his results from that day per 247 Sports:
- Height - 6’ 1.5”
- Weight - 282 lbs
- Hand Size - 10 3/8 in
- Arm Length - 34 in
- Wingspan - 83.5 in
- Vertical Jump - 31.5 in
- Broad Jump - 120 in
- 20 yd Shuttle - 4.45 secs
- 3-Cone - 7.56 secs
- Bench Press - 25 reps
- 40 yd dash - DNP due to hamstring injury
While his height and weight may be underwhelming, his arm length and wingspan are outliers and may prove beneficial to his draft stock. This is especially true because offensive and defensive lineman are typically dinged for having below-average measurements in these areas.
To be fair, it does make sense. Having longer arms and overall length allows a higher degree of separation from your opponent, and in the trenches, separation is the name of the game for a defensive lineman.
When it comes to his broad and vertical jump, these numbers aren’t spectacular but are definitely not below-average either. At 285 pounds, these numbers show how explosive Odighizuwa is and just confirm what is seen on tape.
WHAT HE BRINGS IN 2021
Well it really depends on what the Buccaneers would want to do with him if they were to draft him. Due to the level of versatility that he showed at UCLA and the way that Todd Bowles deploys pressure, he could probably line up anywhere.
However, he really is best suited as a single-gap three-technique defensive tackle. This was where he played the majority of snaps for the Bruins and also where he wreaked the most havoc.
Since he is most likely not going to be an every down defensive tackle in 2021 due to his size and below-average run defense, he could easily be deployed as a situational pass-rusher who would come in for someone like Ndamukong Suh on passing downs.
He has shown that he can really push the pocket with his explosive bull-rush and if he were to line up next to Vita Vea, I don’t see how any quarterback would be able to step up in the pocket.
While he is quite adept at bull-rushing, this unfortunately is his only move at this point in his career. Once he gets locked up with a lineman, he doesn’t possess the repertoire of moves to shed these blocks against the run or pass.
If he were to end up on this team, I could easily see him playing very limited snaps in the early stretch of the season. Yet, down the line, I could see him being a valuable asset based on the explosiveness and power he uses to rush the quarterback.
Based on what he is currently showing, he has the ability to be a starting one-gap defensive tackle. However, this would take quite a bit of refinement and he would definitely have to be dedicated to his craft.
With the right coaching, I could see him learning an arsenal of pass-rushing moves and some tips on how to separate from blocks. Since he is good at penetrating the offensive line already, he would most likely show his strengths in an attacking scheme like the one that Bowles deploys.
If Suh were to retire after next season, I don’t think Odighizuwa would be the one to replace him. However, he could be used as a stop-gap at the position and could easily be used in combination with someone else to fill that role.
Odighizuwa definitely helped his stock at the Senior Bowl and his Pro Day as prior to these, he was seen as an early to mid fourth round pick. Afterwards, he has been been seen more so as an early to mid third rounder.
Since he does possess a lot of raw talent, explosiveness, and overall athleticism at the defensive tackle position, some teams may choose to take him earlier and work with him to realize his potential.
In a very underwhelming defensive tackle class, the value at the position will be inflated which may lead to him being taken even higher. Yet, he will most likely come off the board later into day two.
ON THE CLOCK...
Now it’s your turn Bucs Nation. Looking at the projection, the fit with the Buccaneers’ current roster, and the intangibles, where would you want to hear his name called? Make sure to vote in the poll and leave your comments below!
For Osa Odighizuwa, the Buccaneers should...
This poll is closed
...draft him at current projection (day two if available at team’s slot)
...draft him early (trade up on day two)
...take a better player earlier in the draft
...draft this position, but later than he is projected
...not draft this position group at all