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Alabama Edge Will Anderson Jr. 2023 NFL Draft Profile

Name: Will Anderson Jr.

Position: Edge/Linebacker

College: University of Alabama

Height: 6'4"

Weight: 253 lbs


Speed: Will Anderson Jr. possesses above-average speed for an edge rusher, which allows him to chase down plays from the backside and cover ground effectively in the open field. His speed also contributes to his ability to threaten the edge and create pressure on opposing quarterbacks.


Agility: Anderson displays impressive agility for a player of his size, showcasing lateral quickness and the ability to change direction smoothly. This attribute makes him difficult to block and allows him to evade blockers when attacking the line of scrimmage.


Strength: Anderson is a strong, physical player who uses his power to set the edge against the run and generate consistent pressure on opposing QB's. He has a solid anchor and can disengage from blockers and make plays in the backfield.


Explosiveness: Will Anderson Jr.'s explosiveness off the snap is one of his most significant assets, allowing him to create immediate pressure on opposing quarterbacks. He exhibits a quick first step and consistently wins off the line of scrimmage with his burst.


Tackling: Anderson is a reliable tackler. He demonstrates excellent technique and understands how to utilize his length and strength to secure tackles in both the run game and when pursuing quarterbacks.


Pass Rush Ability: Anderson's pass-rushing skills are among the best in the draft. He possesses a combination of speed, power, and technique that enables him to beat offensive linemen and create pressure consistently. He also displays an array of pass-rush moves and is adept at countering blockers' efforts to slow him down.


Run Stop: Will Anderson Jr. effectively stops the run, as he displays discipline in maintaining gap integrity and setting the edge. His strength and ability to shed blocks allow him to be a force against the run.


Football IQ: Anderson's football IQ is high, as he exhibits a strong understanding of offensive tendencies and how to exploit them. He reads plays well and is adept at diagnosing blocking schemes, allowing him to be in the right position to make plays.


Man Coverage: While Anderson is primarily a pass rusher, he has demonstrated some ability in man coverage. His athleticism allows him to keep up with tight ends and running backs in short to intermediate routes. However, his coverage skills will likely not be a primary focus in the NFL.


Zone Coverage: Anderson's zone coverage skills are still developing, but his size and athleticism give him the potential to contribute in this area. He has shown the ability to drop into short zones and read the quarterback's eyes, but further development in this area will be needed at the next level.


Play Style and Scheme Fit: Will Anderson Jr. is a versatile and dynamic defender who can excel in multiple schemes. He would fit well in a 3-4 defensive scheme as an outside linebacker, where his pass-rushing prowess and athleticism could be utilized to their fullest. Alternatively, he could also contribute in a 4-3 scheme as a defensive end, using his speed and power to create pressure off the edge.


Player Comparisons: Anderson's playing style draws comparisons to NFL pass rushers such as Von Miller and TJ Watt. Like Miller, Anderson showcases a combination of speed, agility, and technique, allowing him to be a consistent threat as a pass rusher. His high motor and versatility are reminiscent of Watt, who has become one of the league's premier edge defenders.


Conclusion: Overall, Will Anderson Jr. is an exciting prospect with the speed, strength, and versatility to make an immediate impact in the NFL. His well-rounded skill set, combined with his high motor and football IQ, make him an appealing prospect for teams seeking a difference-maker on the defensive side of the ball. With proper development and a supportive cast, Anderson has the potential to become a disruptive force at the next level, terrorizing opposing quarterbacks and bolstering his team's pass rush for years to come.

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