NEPD Editor: James Christensen
In a blowout over the porous Ole Miss defense, the Texas Longhorns showed off a quick strike offense and an opportunistic defense.
Here are how the 2013 NFL Draft prospects performed, including four potential top 100 picks on defense.
#80 DE Alex Okafor
-Lining up at LDE, both 2 and 3-point stances.
-Keeping pads low, winning the leverage battle.
-Knocks blocker’s hands off him, flushes the QB into pressure.
-Walking the right tackle back into the pocket on nearly every snap.
-Tried inside move, OL picked up stunt.
-Steps with the RT on the down block, taking the QB on every read/handoff.
-Nice swim move, splits blockers.
-Inside speed move, closes on QB, bends and wraps up for the sack.
-Strong bull rush, disengages and sacks QB stepping up in the pocket.
-Extending his arms through contact, getting a lot of push.
Overview: Okafor was his normal self against Ole Miss – he showed a variety of rush moves as well as his standard bull rush. Nothing new, but I see Okafor as a first round pick this April.
#44 DE Jackson Jeffcoat*
-Lining up at RDE, 2 and 3-point stances.
-Incredibly quick to the quarterback, unblocked, puts a big hit on the QB.
-Nice blocking and effort on the interception return.
-Showing an improved bullrush from last year.
-Active hands, runs the arc, keeps going and gets the hustle sack.
-Unblocked again, great acceleration.
-Drops into zone coverage, able to re-route receiver – needs to stay lower in his pedal.
-Crashes down the line, able to wrap up the RB from behind.
Overview: Jeffcoat seems to have improved a bit from last year, especially with his hand usage and power. Granted, it was against leser competition, but he struggled with that at times last year. If he declares for the 2013 NFL Draft, I’d expect him to be a first round pick.
#4 SAF Kenny Vaccaro
-Playing deep half/third, slot corner, edge rusher, special teams – very versatile.
-Walks into the box, comes on blitz and gets some push on the guard.
-Edge blitz, forces early throw, very quick acceleration.
-Avoids one pick, covers slot receiver across the field on shallow cross.
-Edge blitz, runs through RB and puts pressure on the QB.
-Absolute missile, knocks the QB out of the game with huge hit.
-Stopped running, thought play was over, couldn’t accelerate and takes poor angle – player stepped out on review.
-Another big hit, picks his way through trash from deep zone and makes the tackle.
-Strong open field tackle on shifty RB, broke down and got his ankles.
-Press bail, flips his hips and stays with WR on out route.
-Sits on the in-route, drives on the ball and disrupts the catch.
-Got his hands in a little bit early but no call.
Overview: Vaccaro was full of his trademark intensity, big hits and physical coverage from a variety of positions. He might not have elite speed, but a team looking for a safety that can also play the star and money defensive back positions, as well as excel on special teams, need not look further.
#23 CB Carrington Byndon*
-Lining up at right cornerback and on special teams.
-Sets a nice edge, takes on a block and turns run inside.
-Nice effort and blocking on interception return.
-Misses the tackle on the wide receiver screen.
-Better tackle, wrapped up the body in open space.
-WR pushes him out of the way to make catch, can’t run him down from behind.
-Closes quickly on the receiver, good timing on the hit, couldn’t disrupt the catch.
-Strong tackle, reads route combination and closes on receiver.
-Sealed off outside, out-muscled by WR in run support.
Overview: Byndon had the toughest matchup of the Texas defense on Ole Miss’ big WR prospect, Donte Moncrief. He allowed one big catch to Moncrief where he couldn’t match him physically, but he showed good coverage skills, tackling fundamentals and football IQ.
2013 NFL Draft prospects from Ole Miss are on page two.