Two For Tuesday: Edge Rusher Edition

NEPD Staff Contributor: Jeff Fidler

In the second installment of Two For Tuesday, Jeff takes a look at a couple of Edge Rushers that will probably be drafted somewhere between late round 1 and late round 2. If you are new to the site, Two For Tuesday is a segment where we look at two players who are similarly ranked at the same position. The object to this exercise is to get a feel for the players and to see if there might be a reason to prefer one prospect over the other. So which one of these two prospects do you prefer?

Prospect A:

Round projection: Late 1/Early 2

Height: 6’3″

Weight: 250 Lbs



  • Born June 5, 1996, in N.C. Son of Harold and Doreen. Went to Pine Forest H.S.
  • Earned Semper Fi All-America honors as a senior in 2013 & actually worked out at Fort Bragg.
  • Communications major with similar aspirations after football.
  • Has breakout 2016 season w/ 16.5 sacks & 22 T.F.L.
  • Has 1 son with his fiance


  • Solid, thick build throughout his body. Proportioned H/W.
  • Speed rusher w/ quick twitch burst & flexibility.
  • Consistently shows ability to get low, flat & dip under his opponents outside shoulder.
  • +Range as a run defender. +Chase & pursuit. + C.O.D. Good overall athlete.
  • At times shows good fundamentals in run defense. Leverage, strong hands to disengage, keeps outside shoulder clean.
  • Does a good job staying clean off blocks w/ arms & angles.
  • Experience in space. Good lateral movements.


  • Lack of variety in terms of pass rush. Not much of a power rusher and absolutely has to add a counter to his speed rush. Has to come up w/ better plan after initial contact.
  • Hand usage must improve overall.
  • He can’t sink his hips re-establish position once engaged but he’s not a liability as a weak side defender.
  • Athletic OT’s will be a problem if pass rush game doesn’t evolve.
  • Has to be more physical & aggressive in terms of overall approach to run game.


It was a surprise hearing this prospect would return for his SR campaign but not shocking considering he did he some rather obvious flaws in his game. While he didn’t get the year he wanted due to injuries, doubled/sometimes tripled teamed & other football responsibilities he’s still a very talented prospect. He has legit burst, ability to get flat & is a finisher. If he improves his hands & adds real counter (spin, would be deadly) he’ll be an impact player for a long time.


Prospect B:

Round Project: Round 2/3

Height: 6’4″

Weight: 270 Lbs


  • Honor Roll student at Alief Taylor High School. Was a speed rusher at 205lbs, Ran 4.53 40, 39-inch vert leap. High jumper in track.
  • Had offers from Houston, Rice, Kansas and TCU.
  • Son of Dr. Samuel and Franca. Born Apr. 24, 1995.
  • Father says family comes from royalty in Nigeria.
  • Showed up around 230 at Wake Forest and went through huge body transformation. Weight room beast that lets playing do talking.


  • Long arms, big hands. Powerful, stout body 6’4/270
  • Attacks QB w/ hard work/fight, burst, power & finesse moves. -POWER – Rip, Club, Swat or combo from several. -FINESSE – Hesitation, Spin, Outside to inside crossing face, speed around arc. Will use stride length & tempo to beat his man. Violent hands. Splits doubles attacking gaps by getting skinny and knifing inside. Has ability to get flat when attacking edge.
  • Lines up Wide 9, Both DE spots. Can rush outside/inside. Hurts IOL w/ quickness/hands.
  • Run Game – Maintains good gap discipline, will knife gaps, long arms help stay clean and at times can shed. Uses arm over inside.
  • Improved each year as pass rusher and in the run game. Watches film (to recognize OL blocks &, tells), beast in the weight room.
  • ++Motor. Doesn’t take plays off, sell out for stats. Good c.o.d.


  • Inconsistent get off. Not a twitched up player.
  • Body looks maxed out or very close
  • Needs to learn to counter faster off first move/when first move doesn’t work
  • Probably doesn’t have ability to play/cover in space on edge, flat.


While this prospect may not have  ideal athleticism or explosiveness, he uses his intelligence and his non-stop motor to be a highly productive pass rusher. He has the physical measurables that the Patriots look for. He is also known for his off field intangibles and will grade out highly off the field.


So…. Which prospect do you prefer? Prospect A, which will most likely cost the 31st pick in the draft or Prospect B, which could be around when the Patriots are on the clock at the end of the 2nd. Do you know who these prospects are? Well, A is Harold Landry, Boston College and B is Duke Ejiofor, Wake Forest.






68 Responses to “Two For Tuesday: Edge Rusher Edition”

  1. Stephen J says:

    Another TE that I’ve become interested in is David Wells from SDSU. What has caught my attention about him is he is a dual threat. What makes him a dual threat.

    As a receiver he had 40 targets with 34 receptions for a 85.0% catch percentage in his last two years averaging 14.8 yards per catch/reception this year and 12.55 the past two years. At the East West Shrine Game he measured in at 6’5 3/8″ 252 lbs with 9 1/2″ hands. Draft Maverick said this about him at the East West Shrine Game David Wells has flashed more than a few times as a receiver. Runs crisp routes and has made some nice catches away from his body.

    Here is a receiving play against Stanford this year

    As a blocker Tony Pauline said this his blocking was incredibly impressive. Wells looked like a second offensive tackle when kept on the line of scrimmage to block and easily handled opponents in one-on-one situations. The fact that he did this despite being banged up this week made his blocking exploits even more impressive. As well as this Strength is not an issue for Wells, who has been a dominant blocker during drills and scrimmages in both days of practice. He plays with solid fundamentals and a nasty attitude and has destroyed everyone who’s lined up across from him.

  2. brandonmaxham says:

    joe ostman DE from Central Michigan led the nation in sacks in 2017 ,did not get invited to the combine . really overlooked despite being the leader in sacks .

    • Stephen J says:

      Last Year NFLDraftScout noted that Hunter Dimick was not invited to the combine due to his arm length of 31″and wingspan of 75″. Hunter Dimick last year went undrafted after having 14.5 sacks and 20.0 TFL’s due to his arm length of 31″ and tight hips. Joe Ostman measured in at 31″ and a 75″ wingspan as well at the Shrine Game. Now they do play different positions where Dimick is more a big DE at 6’3″ 274 lbs where Joe Ostman is 6’3″ and 247 lbs is more of that OLB but both have to deal with OL getting their hands on them and fighting through blocks and having those short arm lengths put them at a disadvantage.

  3. kevin z says:

    Old Mock from the davenport scouting report with one change the second 2nd rd pick. I feel confident with this it hits the needs plus value

    2 Dorance Armstrong DE-LB Rangy huge upside sideline to sideline LB
    2 Kevin Tolliver CB or Justin Reid or Quinton Meeks or Rashaan Gaulden like each one grab whos there.
    3 Fatusaki DT can rush plus stop run
    3 Rick Sieler DL over looked but a good player
    4 Ito Smith RB can rush plus catch which huge for Brady
    4 Brandon Parker ot Help Protect Brady
    4 PJ Hall Hall NT Bowling Bowl type
    6 Philip Lindsey RB can catch which huge for Brady plus plays ST

    • kevin z says:

      I probably should have switched Hall with Seiler even though back to back DT not a good look. Hall a fav of mine a diff DT type plays like a bowling bowl type love that style. once get his weight back to his 2016 ibs QBS beware up the middle .

    • brandonmaxham says:

      i’m curious on if you have seen the tape on Kalen Ballage?

      • kevin z says:

        yea I have I think he a nice RB but has a bad fumbling rate which usually does translates to the NFL. BB doesn’t play with fumbling so guessing off Patriots Board.

  4. brandonmaxham says:

    2 other linebackers who are not as well known are keishawn Bierria and Josh Watson. Both are smart , have the ability to clog lanes

  5. brandonmaxham says:

    a linebacker who might be overlooked is Christian Sam from Arizona State. he had 98 tackles in 2017 , he can drop back in coverage and stop the run too.

  6. Stephen J says:

    We all have heard of Nathan Shepherd of Fort Hays St by now but another D2 Player to be aware of is Ferris St DE Zach Sieler who is 6’6″ 290 lbs.

    Here is a great article from last year breaking down who he is and his 2016 season

    and this is a page of his highlights

    He is a Junior who declared early. He hasn’t received a combine invite which will make it more likely he will be an undrafted free agent signing but some scouts are impressed with him to point where he could possibly be selected in the later rounds

    In 2017 He only had 32 Solo Tackles 79 Total Tackles 7 sacks and 2 FF due to being double and tripled team because of the season he had in 2016 described in the article above

  7. brandonmaham says:

    I ‘d prefer Ejifor over Landry then I’d target d-linemen (1 out of PJ Hall , Nathan Sheperd or Taven Bryan)

    then either 1 or 2 linebackers

    – Dorance Armstrong jr and/or Fred Wardner
    -nick Deluca
    – Darius Leonard
    -Skai Moore

  8. Stephen J says:

    I don’t know how under the radar this guy is since Mike Mayock mentioned him but he is worth while and that is Washington TE Will Dissly. If you aren’t familiar with him let me fill you in. He is 6’4″ 256 lbs also seen 269 lbs. Hand size 9 1/2″ Arm Length 33 3/8″ Wingspan 78 7/8″

    Now why is he worth while. 1st he is a converted DE. Then two years ago(2016) switched to TE. This will lower his draft stock but what you will be receiving is a guy who can block and catch at a good level.

    Here is a play at the NFLPA Bowl game he is #89

    While here are a few plays from this year both blocking and catching he is #98 here

    This year he was targeted 28 times with 21 catches a 75% catch rate. He had 289 yards and 2 TD’s. Considering that this was his 1st full year after learning the TE position it took a little bit of time to learn and earn the trust of the coaches and QB to start getting more plays. It now looks like he is starting to blossom. While it’s still early to tell yet with the small sample size I’m interested to see how he does next week at the combine.

  9. Stephen J says:

    John Franklin III runs 4.19 in 40-yard dash at training facility

    Not interested in drafting him just noting that it was faster than John Ross’s record breaking time of 4.22 last year for those that are interested in such things. Yes I know it’s not an official event.

  10. Stephen J says:

    A LB who hasn’t received a much attention is Indiana’s Chris Covington who had 9 stops during the NFLPA bowl game. Tony G an aspiring scout at the Scout Academy had this to say they are throwing the OG at him a ton and he is shedding like a pro already and getting after the ball. Covington was voted as the top Defensive Player. He measured in at 6’1 3/4″ 232 lbs with 33″ Arm Length and 76 3/4″ Wingspan.

    The Chicago Tribune wrote this While I was talking to one scout about TE Ian Thomas, he said: Look up the linebacker Chris Covington. He began his career at Indiana as a quarterback. He’s physical. He’s tough. And some of the instincts he’d need, he’s got those from his background as a quarterback.”

    Covington made 85 tackles last season, 12 for a loss, with three sacks and was named the Hoosiers’ defensive MVP.

    Here is 3 of those plays against Mich St this year

    He tore his ACL in 2015 but should be fully recovered by now. It will be interesting to see how he tests at the Combine this week. If he tests well it wouldn’t surprise me if he was drafted higher than his counter part Tegray Scales.

  11. Stephen J says:

    Big week coming up for Arden Key

    An NFL executive told Daniel Jeremiah He needs to gain the trust of the decision makers. When right, he’s a special talent,” a different executive said. This might be simplifying it, but the Combine could place Key firmly in the first round or force him in the second or third round tier due to concerns. Yet another executive said He was the biggest disappointment of the 2017 season.”

    Which can be seen here

    Albert Breer said this in his latest mock about Arden Key

    I’m really thinking Key will fall out of the first round, and could keep on falling. He has a lot of off-field questions to answer

    Now hearing that Arden Key tweets

    My junior year wasn’t the best year and it didn’t sit well with me but guess what? I learned a lot of life lessons and blessed I went through what I went through!

    And this

    I’m in a happy place! This the happiest I been in a while!

    So what is the off field questions. This is what I came across. Someone at wrote this in May of 2017.

    Arden was a path of destruction & may have already hurt his draft stock. Key has been a complete party animal since arriving at LSU. He has failed multiple drug test, has made a habit of not going to his classes & has gigantic ego. When Key’s father got wind back in Georgia about what was going on with his son on the LSU campus, he came get Arden & brought him back home to Georgia to straighten his ass out. He didn’t want his son to blow this once in a lifetime opportunity. Now come draft time next year, NFL scouts will find out about what Key was doing at LSU & the failed drug tests. He may have already done damage to his stock.

    Now there is a question I have. If his Jr Season was such a big disappointment and in Arden’s words it wasn’t his best and it didn’t sit well with him, Why in the world would you come out and declare early wouldn’t you want to prove it was a fluke and come back and show everyone that your sophmore season was the real deal.

    Word behind the scene is that he failed his 3rd test which would of suspended him for an entire year according to LSU rules. Instead of facing the suspension he decided to declare early.

    Something to note is if this is true and he failed 3 times then he would be entering the NFL’s drug protocol right off the bat. Now that would make sense why some Executives would want some answers and the perfect place for that is coming up next week during the combine.

    • Turbo says:

      He’s the Randy Gregory of this class, but even more talented.

      • Stephen J says:

        Talent is meaningless if you can’t stay on the field whether it is due to injuries or PED’s plus if he has made a habit of not showing up for classes that isn’t going to sit well especially for someone like BB. If it is true I know who BB isn’t picking not matter how talented he is. If it is true I hope he is more like Tyrann Mathieu and turns it around and less like Randy Gregory.

        • Turbo says:

          Just said it’s the same situation, with the same type of prospect in a different class. Didn’t say anything about him being on the Patriots board or that we should draft him.

    • Russell says:

      I doubt Key is on the Patriots draft board.

  12. Russell says:

    If DT Muhammad Wilkerson is cut , Patriots may be a good fit, for a lot less money. he has issues, but the Talent is there, but not at his current contract $17.1 mil. a yr. more like $7-8 mil. yr.

    • steve earle says:

      I think the “issues” are a deal breaker. Don’t see BB looking at them and seeing a Patriot.

      • Stephen J says:

        Was just reading a cbssports article on Wilkerson and this was in there

        He was benched for the Jets’ loss to the Saints for being tardy to a meeting. As ESPN’s Rich Cimini wrote, “It was the second time in 12 days that he had to be disciplined, the fourth time in three years.”

        Definitely not something that is endearing to BB. Has there ever been an instance where someone has been late to a meeting once and it ended well never mind 4 times.

        • Russell says:

          I agree the issues are not in BB’s house. He clearly does not want to play for the Jets, so a team change may straiten him out.

  13. EdgeX says:

    To answer Jeff Fidler’s question:

    Depending on who is available and what they could get I’d rather the Pat’s trade back.

    In no particular order! – these are the DE’s that could still be available when the Pat’s pick first:

    – Rasheem Green
    – Marcus Davenport
    – Arden Key
    – Dorance Armstrong
    – Sam Hubbard
    – Chad Thomas
    – Marcell Frazier
    – Duke Ejiofor
    – Tyquan Lewis

    There’s some intriguing combo’s if the Pat’s decide to double dip.

    • steve earle says:

      I’m not at all against double dipping, all depends on who and when. I have often said I would like to see us draft a DE, DT, and OLB early. As for double dipping how would Sam Hubbard and Duke Ejiorfor be for the edge, or maybe Tim Settle and Nathan Shepherd at DT, then maybe Termaine Edmunds and Marcus Haynes for OLB? All kinds of great combos and fun to speculate on them. Couldn’t do all three combos maybe not even one but still fun.

      • ashley1992 says:

        The more pressure we can get on the opposing qb, the better. I have no problem with go D line with multiple picks.

    • kevin z says:

      I have to go with Armstrong and Frazier had both in few of my mocks. will not have to grab them with back to back picks either

    • Jeff Fid says:

      Davenport is a binky of mine. Hoped he’d stay hidden but he’s so young & has too much potential. I’d be happy as a pig in poop if we landed him.

      • EdgeX says:

        Yeah. I’m curious what the combine will do to his stock. He might be gone by the 20’s but who knows!

        The combine and free agency is going to change so many things for teams.

      • steve earle says:

        Of all the DE’s who could be available my favorite is Davenport but he seems to be climbing so is problematic now but we never know. If we find him at 31 Bill should grab him.

  14. Russell says:

    Keep moving prospects in my Mock; BB trades 1st to Detroit for 2nd #51 , 4th & 5th
    Detroit drafts, 1st- DE Hubbard, Patriots 1st- RB Guice

    2nd (49ers) – DL Harrison Phillips
    2nd (Lions) – DL Duke Ejiofor
    2nd – —- OT Joseph Noteboom
    3d ———-S Quin Blanding
    4th (Lions) – TE Ian Thomas
    4th (comp)- QB J.T. Barrett
    5th (Lions) – LB Micah Kiser
    6th ——— CB Donovan Olumba

    • steve earle says:

      Not bad, still I’d swap your first two around I think. and as for that QB, if we go for one it should be much earlier, a 2nd rd’er otherwise why bother chances of getting even someone close to a good backup goes exponentially down with each lower round.

  15. Russell says:

    A free agent I like for the Patriots; CB Dontae Johnson 6’2″ 200 lbs, 4.45 40 yd. 1.57 10 yd split, 6.82 3-cone (San Francisco) strong tackler!! Could get at a fair price, say; $4-5 mil. a yr.??

    • Russell says:

      26 years old, 4yrs exp. , 1 year as a starter, 2017 16 games 77 tackles.

    • steve earle says:

      Be a good pick up, how good are our chances?

      • Russell says:

        I think Johnson would continue his development in the Patriots system. He looks better on tape, but was beaten as Stephen points out. I think Johnson has a strong upside,, and yes tackling is important. Price would be nice, fit.

        • Stephen J says:

          I didn’t say tackling wasn’t important.

          There is a difference in tackling to prevent a play from happening and tackling because you allowed a play to happen then needed to tackle which was the case in most instances with Johnson.

          Johnson Bademosi was a much better CB this year than Dontae Johnson.

          Bademosi also had similar combine numbers 40 4.39 with 1.58 split 6.96 3 cone. He is also a better run defender than Dontae Johnson. The added benefit with Bademosi is he already knows our system and is familiar with the other starters so communication is less of an issue and he can be had for similar to lower cost.

          So once again I go pass on Dontae Johnson.

    • Stephen J says:

      Just because someone makes a lot of tackles doesn’t mean they are good. It could also mean they are real bad and that is the case here. had this to say: The biggest disappointment was Dontae Johnson, the tall, lengthy cornerback was burned on big play after big play.
      Then there is this by PFF. Dontae Johnson was horrendous he graded out at 36.9 where 70.0 is average.
      Rotoworld had him giving up the 4th most yards in the league last year.

      So I will pass on Dontae Johnson thank you.

  16. Jeff says:

    Potential value free agent for the Patriots: Tank Carradine – he might fit nicely as an affordable veteran with good run defense who can play left end opposite Trey Flowers. This allows Wise to be more of a pass rush specialist and will give time for guys like Rivers and any draft picks this year to develop.

  17. Russell says:

    The 2019 Draft picks for the Patriots;
    1st, 2nd, 3d, 4th, 5th, & 7th The 6th pick was traded to the Lions for Bedemosi

  18. J H TARBORO says:

    The answer is “B” for this particular question, when was the last time you seen the Patriots draft a Boston College player? Exactly! They don’t period.

  19. kevin z says:

    I like both players rather have Duke for the value where picked. The injury a concern though, if slides some may be worth the risk. The injuries on D this past season has me Paranoid lol

    • kevin z says:

      If Landry drops to our 2nd rd pick would take him over Duke. The reason is can play in space.
      Pats need more Space players with teams throwing ball quickly at 2.30 sec. even on deep throws, as soon as QB get ball then throwing deep before a blink of a eye. usually takes close 3 sec unless unblocked to get a sack or pressure. Ex. Superbowl killer loss. foles release ball on average of 2.34 seconds. LB S CB to slow on team imo.

  20. John says:

    Can I pick neither? I like Davenport, Key (just from a skill/athlete perspective). That’s kind of it. Some others I’m ok with (Hubbard, Ejiofor, Armstrong) just don’t see true difference-makers there.

    Think DL (interior) is where it is at. Settle, Payne, Bryan, Green, Andrew Brown, Trenton Thompson, etc. Great depth, great talent, especially within the first 4. Think the EDGE will be ok, if you can a FA addition who can play consistently. Macolm Brown paired with Settle, Bryan would be amazing.

    Mock (EDGE Edition)

    1. Marcus Davenport DE/EDGE (we can only hope!)
    2. Justin Reid SAF
    2. DJ Moore WR
    3. Fred Warner LB

    • kevin z says:

      I like this John. Reid for sure has good Bloodlines plus a need. Not sure BB draft a WR that high though. I like Warner could really use his speed at LB. Who would you take at 1 if Davenport not there? jw curies

      • John says:

        Have a list of guys I like around there: R. Evans, R. Harrison, Settle, Bryan, R. Green, Justin Reid, Vander Esch, Sony Michel, M. McGlinchey, Arden Key, Mo Hurst, Sam Hubbard, Connor Williams, B. Price, James Daniels.

        Those are the guys I’d target around there

    • steve earle says:

      I really like Davenport but like you have no real hope he will be there at 31 but using your #31 to pick him says maybe, just maybe he might. Thanks!

  21. Jeff Fid says:

    Duke really was made for the Patriots but I’m sure 31 other teams love him too. Just how much? I think he’s a guy who might exceed expectations with NFL players around him. Very talented player but it’s the work ethic, practice & study habits that really land him here if we pull the trigger. If we end w/ either in the 2nd I’m pretty happy.

    • steve earle says:

      I think Duke Ejiorfor is a mid 2nd rd pick judging by where I’m seeing him mocked on most mocks. So it appears we are well placed with the SF 2nd to have a realistic shot at drafting him. No one can say if he will become a great player or not but he should be a very good DE who could rotate in packages fairly early and be likely to be making some plays for us in November. WE can but hope.

  22. dslave says:

    My affection for Acc players is enormous. Intelligence, coaching, and intangibles can not be overlooked when looking at these kids from this conference.

  23. steve earle says:

    Oh heck, I’d try to get them both. Just greedy you know?

  24. Russell says:

    Duke Ejiofor, more value given the pick. Not a fan of Landry. If both were on the board at the end of the 2nd round, I still go Ejiofor.

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