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2023 NFL Draft: Scouting The Top Edge Rusher Prospects

Scouting the top edge rusher prospects on the Football Scout 365 NFL Draft board.



Top 5 NFL Draft Grade

Will Anderson Jr. Edge Alabama: Standing at 6-4, 235lbs, Anderson possesses an impressive combination of size, strength, and athleticism. He is a dominant pass rusher, utilizing his speed, quickness, and impressive technique to consistently disrupt plays in the backfield. Anderson is also an excellent run defender, showing the ability to quickly diagnose plays and make tackles behind the line of scrimmage. He has excellent instincts and football IQ, always seeming to be in the right place at the right time to make plays.


Top 10 NFL Draft Grade

Myles Murphy Edge Clemson: At 6-5 275lbs, Murphy possesses one of the highest grades in the 2023 draft class. He has the athletic and physical tools you want in today's NFL edge rusher. At 6-5, 275lbs, Murphy possesses the elite length needed to go one-on-one with today's top NFL tackles. On tape, Murphy exhibits an elite first step combined with elite-level lateral quickness for his position. His assets do not end with quickness; he can win with speed or power at the point of attack. Using his dense frame and elite strength, Murphy can anchor and hold the edge in the run game or bull through a blocker on his way to the QB.


Mid To Late 1st Round Grade

Tyree Wilson Edge Texas Tech: At 6-6 275lbs, Wilson possesses excellent size and length for the position. He is a powerful and explosive pass rusher, utilizing his strength and quickness to get around offensive linemen and pressure the quarterback. Wilson is also a solid run defender, using his size and strength to set the edge and make tackles. While he may need to continue to refine his technique and develop more pass rush moves, Wilson has the potential to be a productive defensive lineman at the NFL level.


Nolan Smith Edge Georgia: At 6-3 235lbs, Smith possesses an impressive combination of size, speed, and athleticism. He is an explosive pass rusher, utilizing his speed and quickness off the edge to consistently pressure the quarterback. Smith is also a strong run defender who understands how to use leverage to set the edge. He has excellent instincts and football IQ. While he may need to continue to refine his technique and develop more pass rush moves, Smith has the potential to be a highly productive defensive player at the NFL level.


Keion White Edge Georgia Tech: At 6-4 280lbs, White possesses good size and athleticism. White is a versatile player who can play both defensive end and linebacker, showing impressive speed and agility for his size. He is a disruptive pass rusher, using his burst and quickness to get around blockers and pressure the quarterback. White is also a strong run defender that understands how to use leverage to set a hard edge . While he may need to continue to refine his technique and develop more pass rush moves, White has the potential to be a productive defender at the NFL level.


Late 1st Round-Early 2nd Round Grade

Lukas Van Ness Edge Iowa: Lukas Van Ness possesses good size and strength, standing at 6-4 and weighing around 275 pounds. Van Ness is a disruptive force on the defensive line and has shown the ability to get into the backfield and make plays behind the line of scrimmage. He has good quickness off the snap and solid technique, allowing him to shed blocks and make tackles. While he may need to continue to refine his skills and develop more pass-rush moves, Van Ness has the potential to be a solid NFL player.


Will McDonald IV Edge Iowa State: At 6-4 230lbs, McDonald is athletic with a good first step and speed off the edge. He is a relentless pass rusher, showing impressive burst and agility to get around blockers and pressure the quarterback. McDonald also has solid coverage skills for a defensive end, showing the ability to drop back into coverage and make plays on the ball. While he may need to continue to improve his strength and refine his technique, McDonald has the potential to be a productive pass rusher at the NFL level.


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