Sunday, April 26, 2015

2015 NFL Draft: Top 5 Positional Rankings: Interior Defensive Line





3 Technique DT/5 Technique DE
Terms and definitions via Pro Football Focus 
for more visit:  https://www.profootballfocus.com/blog/2014/04/23/2014-defensive-prototypes-the-d-line/
The 3-technique is the pass-rushing defensive tackle in a 4-3. He is the guy tasked with bringing interior pressure and wreaking havoc in the backfield. 3-techniques are shaded outside of the guard to one side of the formation, usually isolating them one-on-one with that blocker and giving them the best chance to create pressure.

NFL Prototypes: Gerald McCoy and Geno Atkins

NFL Prototype Size: 6-1 to 6-4/290-310 lbs

Traditionally, the 5-technique was a two-gap player.  Just like the nose tackle, 3-4 ends were needed to control the blocker lined up over them and be able to stop the run headed through either the B or C-gap to his side of the field.

With the move towards one-gap systems regardless of the number of players with their hands in the dirt the 3-4 DE has become a far more flexible player. Guys like JJ Watt are built like old-school 5-techniques with impressive length and size but they have the speed and quickness to ply their trade at multiple spots along that front. Watt is the new-look 5-technique prototype.

The NFL wants the 5-technique to have that length in order to keep an offensive tackle away from his body and be able to react in space, but he also needs speed and athleticism that they were never expected to possess in the past.

NFL Prototypes: JJ Watt and Muhammed Wilkerson

NFL Prototype Size: 6-4 to 6-7/290-315 lbs




1. LEONARD WILLIAMS-USC
6-5/302
NFL Comparison: Richard Seymour/Gerald McCoy
Likely Career Role: Star DT/DE that can fit any system
Draft Range: Top 5

2. ARIK ARMSTEAD-OREGON
6-7/292
NFL Comparison: Calais Campbell
Likely Career Role: Starting 5 technique DE in a 3-4, has Pro Bowl potential
Draft Range: 15-Early 2nd RD

3. CARL DAVIS-IOWA
6-5/320
NFL Comparison: Red Bryant
Likely Career Role: Starting 4-3 DT, better as a role player then your top DT.
Draft Range: 2nd-3rd

4. MICHAEL BENNETT-OHIO ST.
6-2/293
NFL Comparison: Mike Daniels
Likely Career Role: Solid starting 3 technique DT that can fit either 3-4 or 4-3, is undersized so he will be best suited if he's playing next to a dominant nose tackle.
Draft Range: 2nd-3rd

5 (tie). HENRY ANDERSON-STANFORD
6-6/294
NFL Comparison: less athletic Cameron Jordan
Likely Career Role: Perfect fit as a 5 technique DE, solid/safe prospect with a high motor and college productivity.
Draft Range: 2nd-4th

5 (tie). MARIO EDWARDS-FSU
6-3/279
NFL Comparison: Michael Bennett
Likely Career Role: Perfect fit as a 5 technique DE with the size to play LDE or DT in a 4-3
Draft Range: 2nd-4th


Nose Tackles 
The age of the massive 3-4 defensive lineman has passed. Fewer and fewer teams are using the old two-gap system and man-mountain linemen are growing thin on the ground. Most teams that run the 3-4 in today’s NFL are doing so within the realms of a one-gap system, rather than asking their linemen to occupy multiple gaps.

The modern 3-4 nose tackle can’t just be a massive space-eater. He needs to be able to affect an offense in sub-packages and on passing downs as more than just a sink hole for blockers. Poe can be that guy and for now he is the new prototype for the position.

The 1-technique does much the same job as the 0-tech, except that he is shaded between the center and one of the guards, and is rarely expected to control two gaps. They are, however, expected to command the double team from the center and guard lined up over him, and thus free up other defenders to be, at worst, one-on-one with their blockers.

A prototypical 1-technique doesn't just look great against the run himself, but allows players around him to reap the benefits of that extra occupied blocker. He can improve an entire run defense.

NFL Prototypes: Dontari Poe (3-4 NT) and Marcel Dareus (4-4 NT)

NFL Prototype Size: 6-0 to 6-3/310-335 lbs






1. DANNY SHELTON-WASHINGTON 
6-2/339
NFL Comparison: BJ Raji
Likely Career Role: Starting nose tackle in a 3-4 or 4-3 with Pro Bowl skill set
Draft Range: 7-23

2. MALCOLM BROWN-TEXAS  
6-2/319
NFL Comparison: Dan Williams
Likely Career Role: Starting nose tackle with versatility and quickness to play the 3 technique in a 3-4 or 4-3
Draft Range: Mid-Late 1st

3. EDDIE GOLDMAN-FSU
6-4/336
NFL Comparison: Randy Starks/Kevin Williams
Likely Career Role: Starting nose tackle in a 3-4 or 4-3
Draft Range: Late 1st-Early 2nd

4. JORDAN PHILLIPS-OKLAHOMA
6-5/329
NFL Comparison: Terrance Knighton/Albert Haynesworth
Likely Career Role: Starting 3-4 nose tackle, boom/bust prospect due to motor and inconsistency. Has Pro Bowl skills but could just as easily end up being another Haynesworth.
Draft Range: Late 1st-2nd

5. GRADY JARRETT-CLEMSON
6-1/304
NFL Comparison: Kyle Willims
Likely Career Role: Starting 1 gap nose tackle in a 4-3 with the quickness to play the 3 technique, short armed but very strong player that can carve out a niche like Kyle Williams
Draft Range: 2nd-3rd

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