This summer, I went through senior pass-rushing prospects who recorded at least five sacks and were between 230 and 280 pounds. One of the nine mid-major prospects to pass through that filter last summer was Texas-San Antonio’s defensive end Marcus Davenport. According to College Football Reference, Davenport has 23 total premium tackles (tackles for a loss or sacks) in 2017, continuing his progression.
CBS/NFL Draft Scout currently lists Davenport as just shy of 6’6″ at 235 pounds with a 4.77-second 40-yard dash. In terms of height-weight-speed, he’s lighter than you would expect for an NFL pass-rushing prospect. It’s rare to find Gumby bodies like his, but former Georgia pass-rusher Leonard Floyd was drafted in the first-round, as a 3-4 outside linebacker, at 6’5″ and change at 244 pounds. If some numbers break right for Davenport, that could vault him into the top-100 conversation.
In the five games of UTSA’s season that I have been able to find (first five of 2017), he mostly got home with effort, which matters, but is not a rare trait at the NFL level. The two exceptions were two runs plays in which his length, technique and effort came together.
At the moment, I believe he’s a player who can fit in an NFL rotation, but assuming that he’s going to be a starter as a rookie will lead to disappointment. The upside to taking Davenport is that there is still some unknown about his upside, considering the fact that he wasn’t able to fill out completely at a Conference USA program. (Coming out of high school, 247 sports ranked him as a two-star, 190-pound defensive end.)
The recent Senior Bowl commit looks like a Day 3 prospect who has the potential to play himself into the low end of Day 2 depending on draft process. NFL Network’s Daniel Jeremiah stated “He could move into the first-round conversation” earlier this week.