NFL Draft Watch: Top 3 DL Rankings

With the NFL Draft rapidly approaching, over the next few days I plan on breaking down the best and brightest talents in this years class. The defensive line class has a few solid guys, and one superstar, so where do they rank in my eyes?

1. Derrick Brown, Auburn

Pro Comparison: Fletcher Cox

Derrick Brown is heavily slept on. With Okudah, Simmons, and Young stealing a lot of the headlines, Brown has flown under the radar. Brown is a beast at defensive tackle. He’s versatile, at nose tackles he’s a force and when pushed a crossed the line he is a nightmare for running backs. Brown is a beast against the run with a bright future. Cox is incredible at establishing interior pressure, that’s the kind of thing Brown is excellent at which makes them an obvious comparison.



2. Javon Kinlaw, South Carolina

Pro Comparison: Grady Jarrett

Javon Kinlaw is a physical anomaly. Kinlaw is a good athlete in the interior. Kinlaw is a run stuffer and a matchup nightmare. Kinlaw is a dangerous player, but he’s flashed a lot of inconsistencies. Kinlaw can be a matchup nightmare similar to Grady Jarrett. At times, Jarrett can be nothing more than a drawer of doubles teams to free up other guys. Kinlaw can do that and continue to grow and become a better prospect.

3. Ross Blacklock, TCU

Pro Comparison: Henry Anderson

I believe there is a talent drop off after Kinlaw. Blacklock is a talented player with a very high ceiling but he has some issues that need to be worked on. His football IQ could stand to grow, but that will develop with time. He could use some technical refinement, but aside from that, he’s a physical specimen. He creates interior pressure with his blend of size and speed and he’s a low-risk high reward prospect that could be a contributor early and often at the next level. Henry Anderson strikes me as a solid comp because of his ability to create interior pressure and be moved all around the line. 

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