NEPD Contributor: Matthew Mochal
Daniel McCullers came into his first year in Knoxville with high expectations, and may have exceeded those with his impressive season in which he had 39 total tackles with 5.5 for a loss and one sack. Playing in all 12 games, primarily as the NT in Tennessee’s 3-4 he showed the ability to be the traditional plugger NT but also flashes rare burst and closing speed for a man his size [6’6 377 pounds].
He shows the versatility of a prospect who could play all over the line in either the 3-4 or 4-3 [DT/NT/5T], where he is able to use his size and strength to contain the rush to the sideline, while also eating gaps and linemen freeing up pass rushers and linebackers behind him.
- Pushes Center back 6 yards lined up as 0-tech, both Guards triple team, pushes another 2 yards, blows up pocket.
- Pushes Center back 5 yards and shoves him into Quarterback, QB ducks/side steps into Defensive End.
- Guesses snap count, causes running back to fumble after swatting at the ball.
- Lines up at 3-tech in 43, doubled by Center/Right Guard, unable to get leverage and move pocket.
- Stoned 3 plays in a row, gives up each time, forgoing pursuit of the ball carrier.
- Fights through double team as 3-tech, shares TFL.
- Lines up over center, pushes Center into Quarterback, causes QB to scramble for 9 yards.
- Gets tired towards middle of Fourth Quarter, losses explosion and hand usage fails, gets put on skates.
- Dominates line of scrimmage on about 75% of snaps, destroying the pocket and causing the quarterback to scramble or make quick throws. He is able to push back the center 4-6 yards when singled out, struggles with consistency when doubled and tripled teamed. When he gets high, is able to be put on skates and pushed around by the guard.
- Bull rushes Guard, knocks him over, makes diving leap to rush Murray’s throw.
- Lines up at 3-tech, uses hands to push Guard from play, chases down running back after 5 yards, making stop of bigger play.
- Gets too high on back to back plays on goal line stands, becoming non factor.
- Slow to stunt, knocked from play.
- Beats Guard off the snap, pushes TE chipping out of the way, knocks Murray down.
- Jumps snap, causes running back to break to the outide [big gain].
- Slow off of snap, knocked backwards and onto the ground.
- Fights off double team, hits running back in backfield for 3 yard loss.
- Daniel provides an inconsistent game, being stoned or pushed from the play far too often, has short arms and doesn’t extend off of blocks. Becomes worn down by end of the game, showing to be a non-factor. Had two splash plays, one where he chases down the running back from behind, the other beating the double team and knocking over Murray.