Senior Power 5 EDGE Watch List

Senior Mid Major EDGE Watch List
May 15, 2017
Top 10 Pass-Rushers in 2018 NFL Draft
May 15, 2017

Senior Power 5 EDGE Watch List

Justis Mosqueda

It’s watch list season. That means it’s time to start #grinding #tape.

Let’s save some time here.

Last year, there were 22 pass-rushers who were drafted in the first five rounds in the draft who measured in between 230 and 280 pounds. These are the players you’d consider as best fits as 3-4 outside linebackers and 4-3 defensive ends.

This is where they came from:

  • 15 of the 22 (68 percent) played in the Power 5
  • 3 of the 22 (14 percent) played in the Group of 5
  • 4 of the 22 (18 percent) played in any division lower than FBS

Here’s our piece on Group of 5 seniors

How do we narrow down all of FBS football into the 20ish pass-rushers who have a chance to actually get drafted with a significant draft pick in 2017? You look at the NFL’s trends.

Of the 18 FBS pass-rushers drafted in the first five rounds of the 2017 draft, 14 of them (78 percent) registered at least five sacks (per ESPN, which rounds up sack totals) in the 2015 season. Basically, if you want any shot to get drafted, you need to record at least five sacks in the season before you’re eligible for the draft.

These are the exceptions:

  • Solomon Thomas (3.5 sacks in 2015)-freak athlete who played nose tackle at a power school
  • Takkarist McKinley (3.5 sacks in 2015)-held down by injury, elite 40-yard dash and played at a power school
  • T.J. Watt (0 sacks in 2015)-transitioned from offense, freak athlete and played at a power school
  • Carl Lawson (1 sack in 2015)-held down by injury, elite 40-yard dash and played at a power school

Those aren’t players you need to dig for. Those players will come to you. I promise.

It’s also worth noting that of the 22 pass-rushers drafted from any division in the first five rounds, 18 of them (82 percent) ran better than a 4.80-second 40-yard dash.

These are the exceptions:

  • Derek Barnett (4.88-second 40-yard dash) SEC
  • Charles Harris (4.82-second 40-yard dash) SEC
  • Taco Charlton (4.92-second 40-yard dash) Big 10
  • Deatrich Wise Jr. (4.92-second 40-yard dash) SEC

The NFL drafts:

  1. Players who post at least back-to-back five-sack seasons
  2. Players who post a sub-4.80-second 40-yard dash

If you’re trying to find college pass-rushers, then you can narrow down the list a lot by looking at past production. (We don’t know their 40-yard dashes yet.)

You can cut the list of Power 5 seniors to 15 if you simply filter out players:

  • who weigh 230 pounds or lighter
  • who weigh 280 pounds or more
  • who recorded fewer than five sacks (I used ESPN for all of this, they round up)

(It would have been 16, but Jermaine Carter of Maryland is an off the ball linebacker. We’re not trying to dig for off the ball linebackers. Ever.)

Here are the players who make the “watch list” in order by 2016 sack yardage:

Harold Landry, Boston College

  • 17 sacks for -143 yards in 2016
  • Listed at 6021, 250 pounds and a 4.72-second 40-yard dash by NFL Draft Scout (which I think is the best measurement estimator online)
  • Listed as a 3* 6’3″, 242-pound recruit out of Fayetteville, North Carolina by 247 Sports
  • 2016 AP All-American Second-Teamer and 2016 All-ACC Second-Teamer
  • 21 sacks and 39 tackles for a loss in his career

Duke Ejiofor, Wake Forest

  • 11 sacks for -94 yards in 2016
  • Listed at 6025, 275 pounds and a 4.84-second 40-yard dash by NFL Draft Scout
  • Listed as a 3* 6’4″, 210-pound recruit out of Houston, Texas by 247 Sports (former Rice commit)
  • 2013 redshirt
  • Missed time with a concussion in 2015
  • 2016 All-ACC Third-Teamer
  • 17 sacks and 26.5 tackles for a loss in his career

Jesse Aniebonam, Maryland

  • 9 sacks for -75 yards in 2016
  • Listed at 6032, 260 pounds and a 4.87-second 40-yard dash by NFL Draft Scout
  • Listed as a 4* 6’4″, 230-pound recruit out of Onley, Maryland by 247 Sports
  • 13 sacks and 21.5 tackles for a loss in his career

James Hearns, Louisville

  • 8 sacks for -71 yards in 2016
  • Listed at 6021, 249 pounds and a 4.74-second 40-yard dash by NFL Draft Scout
  • Listed as a 4* 6’3″, 235-pound inside linebacker recruit out of Tallahassee, Florida by 247 Sports (former Florida commit who was a late qualifier)
  • 2013 medical redshirt for a meniscus tear
  • Shot in an off-campus party in 2016
  • 10.5 sacks and 14.5 tackles for a loss in his career

Bradley Chubb, North Carolina State

  • 11 sacks for -60 yards in 2016
  • Listed at 6031, 273 pounds and a 4.86-second 40-yard dash by NFL Draft Scout
  • Listed as a 3* 6’4″, 225-pound recruit out of Powder Springs, Georgia by 247 Sports
  • 2016 team captain
  • 2016 All-ACC Second-Teamer
  • He and his cousin Nick Chubb look to keep their football family label alive
  • 15 sacks and 31.5 tackles for a loss in his career

Tyquan Lewis, Ohio State

  • 8 sacks for -55 yards in 2016
  • Listed at 6032, 260 pounds and a 4.78-second 40-yard dash by NFL Draft Scout
  • Listed as a 4* 6’4″, 227-pound recruit out of Tarboro, North Carolina by 247 Sports
  • Already has his degree
  • 2016 All-Big Ten First-Teamer and the Big Ten defensive lineman of the year
  • 16.5 sacks and 27 tackles for a loss

Ogbonnia Okoronkwo, Oklahoma

  • 9 sacks for -55 yards in 2016
  • Listed at 6015, 245 pounds and a 4.78-second 40-yard dash by NFL Draft Scout
  • Listed as a 3* 6’2″, 245-pound recruit out of Houston, Texas by 247 Sports
  • 2013 redshirt
  • Had a shoulder injury entering spring/summer last year
  • Was carted off by EMTs after the Texas Tech game in 2016
  • Missed this spring, including the spring game, due to an undisclosed injury
  • 2016 All-Big 12 Second-Teamer
  • 13 sacks and 17 tackles for a loss in his career

K.J. Smith, Baylor

  • 7 sacks for -46 yards in 2016
  • Listed at 6015, 265 pounds and a 4.87-second 40-yard dash by NFL Draft Scout
  • Listed as a 3* 6’2″, 245-pound recruit out of Frisco, Texas by 247 Sports
  • 2013 redshirt
  • 2016 All-Big 12 First-Teamer
  • Plays more of a defensive tackle role than a defensive end role
  • 12 sacks and 27 tackles for a loss in his career

Mat Boesen, TCU

  • 6 sacks for -43 yards in 2016
  • Listed at 6036, 235 pounds and no 40-yard dash by NFL Draft Scout
  • Listed as a 3* 6’3″, 235-pound recruit out of Torrance, California by 247 Sports (originally a Boise State signing)
  • Originally played at Boise State before he was suspended for his arrest of inattentive or careless driving
  • Eventually dismissed for a violation of team rules and played at Long Beach City College before enrolling at TCU last year
  • 2013 redshirt
  • Missed two games last year due to an undisclosed injury
  • Former high school wrestler and tight end
  • 8 sacks and 12 tackles for a loss in his career (16 sacks and 33.5 tackles for a loss if you count his Long Beach City College numbers)

Xavier Washington, Northwestern

  • 5 sacks for -39 yards in 2016
  • Listed at 6011, 235 pounds and a 4.89-second 40-yard dash by NFL Draft Scout
  • Listed as a 3* 6’1″, 231-pound recruit out of Cedar Hill, Texas by 247 Sports
  • Currently suspended indefinitely after a felony cocaine arrest in early May, but is still listed on the team’s website as on the roster
  • 6.5 sacks and 13 tackles for a loss in his career

Jacob Pugh, Florida State

  • 5 sacks for -39 yards in 2016
  • Listed at 6032, 232 and a 4.78-second 40-yard dash by NFL Draft Scout
  • Listed as a 4* 6’4″, 221-pound recruit out of Tallahassee, Florida by 247 Sports
  • 7.5 sacks and 11 tackles for a loss in his career

Tralund Webber, Oklahoma State

  • 6 sacks for -35 yards in 2016
  • Listed at 6’5″ and 250 pounds by school site (unlisted on NFL Draft Scout)
  • Listed as a 3* 6’4″, 245-pound recruit out of Cameron, Texas by 247 Sports (former Minnesota commit)
  • Played at Blinn College out of high school, transferred to Oklahoma State last year after announcing his commitment to Minnesota
  • 6 sacks and 12 tackles for a loss in his career (15.5 sacks and 25 tackles for a loss if you count his Blinn College numbers)

Lorenzo Carter, Georgia

  • 5 sacks for -32 yards in 2016
  • Listed at 6045, 242 pounds and a 4.79-second 40-yard dash by NFL Draft Scout
  • Listed as a 5* 6’5″, 232-pound recruit out of Norcross, Georgia by 247 Sports
  • 2014 Georgia newcomer of the year
  • 9.5 sacks and 13 tackles for a loss in his career

Davin Bellamy, Georgia

  • 5 sacks for -23 yards in 2016
  • Listed at 6042, 242 pounds and a 4.79-second 40-yard dash by NFL Draft Scout
  • Listed as a 4* 6’5″, 235-pound recruit out of Atlanta, Georgia by 247 Sports (former Florida State commit)
  • 2013 redshirt
  • Had a thumb surgery in 2013
  • Arrested for a DUI in 2014
  • Had a shoulder surgery in 2015
  • “Freak” lower body injury while preparing for 2015 bowl season
  • 8 sacks and 16 tackles for a loss in his career

Jarrett Johnson, Texas A&M

  • 5 sacks for -19 yards in 2016
  • Listed at 6030, 260 pounds and a 4.83-second 40-yard dash by NFL Draft Scout
  • Listed as a 4* 6’3″, 226-pound recruit out of Katy, Texas by 247 Sports
  • 6 sacks and 23 tackles for a loss in his career

Measurements via NFL Draft Scout or school websites

Recruiting rankings via 247 Sports

Stats via ESPN, Sports Reference or school websites