If you ask any GM in the NFL, “what is your biggest need?” or “what are some of your biggest needs?”, the overwhelming majority of them will tell you PASS RUSH. Just look around in the NFL, practically every team needs help along their defensive front in some variety. Whether it is at DT, DE or at rush linebacker.
The good news is that in the 2017 NFL Draft, there will be a plethora of pass rushers available on Day 3 of the draft. Some of them have the potential to be 10+ a year sack guys. How can that be possible? And why wouldn’t’ these guys go on Day 1 or Day 2 of the draft?
Part of the reason is because of the depth of the draft. Some of these guys would likely go on Day 1 or Day 2 of the draft, but because there are SO many guys, some will inevitably slide down in the draft, creating LOADS of value on Day 3.
Some will likely slide because of playing for small schools, and not competing on the big stage or against the best offensive lineman. Some will slide because of nagging injury concerns that have plagued their college career.
The other reason many will fall is because of off the field concerns. Many of these guys have had slight hiccups in their college career that will prevent teams from feeling comfortable. Some have major concerns that will cause them to be taken completely off many teams’ draft boards.
Here are some of my absolute favorites:
Derek Rivers – Youngstown State
Rivers might go late day 2, but he very possibly could slide down to the early part of Day 3. He’s one of the best pure pass rushers in this draft, showing the explosiveness and quick twitch teams are looking for.
Tyus Bowser – Houston
Bowser is a smooth athlete and would be an ideal 3-4 OLB with his fluidity in space. He possesses outstanding length and the ideal elasticity and bendability to consistently win the edge. After an impressive senior bowl, he could very likely go in the early part of Day 3.
Ejuan Price – Pittsburgh
Price is an undersized stud edge rusher for Pittsburgh. He reminds me a lot of a young Elvis Dumervil. He’s a menace off the edge and lives in the backfield. Because of his lack of height and length, he will likely be a late round steal.
Al-Quadin Muhammad – Miami
Muhammad got kicked off the Hurricanes team prior to his senior season. He’s one of the most explosive pass rushers in this draft. He possesses elite get-off but has some off the field questions. How far can he drop?
Joe Mathis – Washington
Mathis is an ideal 3-4 outside linebacker showing an ability to win standing up or play in space. But Mathis has had some injury concerns in his career and has missed a lot of playing time.
Tarell Basham – Ohio
Basham is a small school kid but has really impressed at pre-draft workouts and on tape. He’s got the stoutness and muscular proportions to be a 3-down player.
Keionta Davis – Chattanooga
Davis is another small school kid but came on the radar after extremely impressive outings versus both Cam Robinson and Roderick Johnson. He’s a powerful kid with a really strong base.
Trey Hendrickson – Florida Atlantic
Hendrickson is a stout and physical kid who would be an ideal 4-3 LDE in the right system. He’s a special teams’ beast and can be a nice rotational pass rush piece for a defensive line.
These are just a few of the guys that could help with the pass rush and be found on Day 3 of the draft. There will be more, just keep digging!