Joey Bosa, 3-4OLB, Ohio State
Height: 6-5. Weight: 269. Arm: 33.38. 40 Time: 4.86. Projected Round (2016): Top-10 Pick. 4/27/16: At the combine, Bosa had a decent performance despite his 40 time being slower than expected, but his team interviews resulting in some mixed reviews. Teams have concerns about Bosa being a hard-partier and using party drugs like molly and ecstasy. He told teams he was suspended for the season opener because he refused to take the drug test. While teams have those concerns, Bosa is a likely top-10 pick, and sources with Tennessee said in mid-March that Bosa was one of the finalists for the No. 1 pick - which now belongs to the Rams - along with Laremy Tunsil and Jalen Ramsey.
Sources say that Bosa is like another Ryan Kerrigan for the NFL and the media has overhyped him. After missing the 2015 season opener with a suspension, Bosa totaled 51 tackles with 16 for a loss and five sacks for the year. While he didn't play poorly, he wasn't as tenacious as he was in 2014, despite seeing single-block pass-rushing opportunities. Bosa looked better as a run defender. He achieved pressure on the quarterback, but wasn't as prolific in the pass rush compared to his sophomore year. Bosa didn't play with as much reckless abandon as in past seasons, and he wouldn't be the first highly rated junior who was restraining his play to protect himself from injury.
8/22/15: Bosa will miss the first game of 2015 over a suspension for violating team rules. It will be interesting to see if this comes back to hurt him in the future. In 2014, Bosa recorded 55 tackles with 13.5 sacks, 21 tackles for a loss, four forced fumbles and pass defended. He simply lived in opponents' backfields.
The 6-foot-5, 285-pounder has quickness to go with natural strength. He has a serious burst off the snap with the speed to turn the corner. The sophomore also displayed good hands to shed blocks while working upfield. Many have compared Bosa to J.J. Watt, but that isn't fair to Bosa as Watt has rewritten NFL record books and is the best player in the NFL. That being said, Bosa is a great prospect who looks like he has the talent to be perennial Pro Bowler and double-digit sacker.
Bosa was one of the best freshmen in 2013 and clearly is full of talent. He racked up 44 tackles with 13.5 tackles for a loss, 7.5 sacks and one forced fumble that season.
Leonard Floyd*, 3-4OLB, Georgia
Height: 6-6. Weight: 244. Arm: 33.13. 40 Time: 4.60. Projected Round (2015): Top-25 Pick. 4/27/16: Floyd put on a display at the combine. I had projected his 40 time to be 4.60 seconds, but I didn't realize he would have added about 15 pounds to his frame and maintained that speed. Floyd really helped himself by showing he didn't lose speed while getting heavier and stronger. Off of the field, team sources say that Floyd is a small-town kid who loves football. He's getting good reviews there.
In 2015, Floyd totaled 74 tackles with 10.5 for a loss, 4.5 sacks and three passes batted. He put a lot more pressure on the quarterback than the numbers indicate. Floyd is very fast off the edge with a rare ability to bend. He has a ton of potential to develop. His best fit would come as an edge rusher in a 3-4 defense.
Floyd was splitting reps between inside and outside linebacker at times during the 2015 season. While Floyd handled the new duties at inside linebacker okay, he looked awkward at dropping into coverage. Sources say that he won't be playing inside linebacker in the NFL. Floyd's much better served doing what he does best: rushing the quarterback.
8/24/15: Floyd is a speedy rusher who has a lot of potential. He is a natural pass-rusher with agility and is very fast off the edge. Floyd must get stronger in the ground game though. After getting run over by Florida in ugly fashion, Georgia benched him against Kentucky for freshman Lorenzo Carter. Floyd received more playing time after that and looked better.
The sophomore notched 55 tackles with six sacks, two forced fumbles and 8.5 tackles for a loss in 2014. He had an impressive games against Missouri and Clemson. Floyd wisely returned for his junior year and and should get stronger before entering the NFL draft.
In 2013, Floyd totaled 55 tackles with 9.5 tackles for a loss and 6.5 sacks. He played at Hargrave Military Academy for a season after high school and was already draft eligible this past May.
Shaq Lawson*, 3-4OLB, Clemson
Height: 6-2. Weight: 269. Arm: 32.75. 40 Time: 4.70. Projected Round (2016): 1-2. 4/27/16: At the combine, Lawson ran fast and did well in the team drills. He showed that he could be a fit as a 3-4 outside linebacker. Some teams have second-round grades on Lawson, but like with teammate Kevin Dodd, they wouldn't be surprised if he goes in the first round. A few team sources said they expect Lawson to go in the No. 10-25 range.
Lawson played well for Clemson in 2015 and was a quality defender against the run, while also putting steady pressure on the quarterback. He totaled 60 tackles, 25.5 tackles for a loss, 12.5 sacks and one forced fumble on the year. Lawson turned in strong performances against Louisville and Notre Dame. He is a smooth defender who has some natural pass-rushing skills, but isn't explosive or super twitchy. For the NFL, Lawson fits a 4-3 defense, but he isn't a good fit in a 3-4.
8/22/15: In 2014, Lawson was part of Clemson's tough defense as a rotational backup. He totaled 34 tackles with 11 for a loss and 3.5 sacks. Lawson played better than the numbers indicate as he only started one game due to the presence of three seniors, including Vic Beasley. Clemson was so loaded at defensive end that it was hard for snaps to go to the sophomore Lawson. He is being counted on to replace Beasley this season.
Emmanuel Ogbah*, 3-4OLB, Oklahoma State
Height: 6-4. Weight: 273. Arm: 35.5. 40 Time: 4.63. Projected Round (2016): 1-3. 4/27/16: Ogbah excelled at the combine, putting up a surprising 40 time. He also did well in the field drills. Ogbah showed that he has speed and athleticism to develop for the NFL. Sources say they rate Ogbah as a mid- to late first-rounder. The reason he isn't higher is a lack of consistency.
Ogbah was very good during the 2015 season, notching at least one sack in all but two games. He totaled 64 tackles, 17.5 for a loss, three forced fumbles and 13 sacks on the year. Ogbah can beat offensive linemen with strength and speed. He also had strong showings against Kansas State's Cody Whitehair and Texas Tech's Le'Raven Clark, two future NFL competitors.
8/22/15: Ogbah broke out for the Cowboys in 2014 with 11 sacks, 49 tackles, 17 tackles for a loss, one forced fumble and five passes batted. He has quickness to go with strength and made a lot of plays in the backfield. Ogbah isn't a pure speed rusher or quick twitch, but he has power, plays the run well and has a good motor. As a freshman in 2013, Ogbah had four sacks and 20 tackles while rotating into the game.
Noah Spence, 3-4OLB, Eastern Kentucky
Height: 6-2. Weight: 254. Arm: 31. Hand: 10. 40 Time: 4.80. Projected Round (2015): 1-2. 4/27/16: Spence is on the bubble between the late first round and early second round. In Indianapolis, Spence had a rough combine performance with a slow 40 and did not standout in the field drills. His 40 time was hardly any better at his pro day less than a week later.
At the Senior Bowl, Spence had a tremendous week as he used his speed to abuse offensive tackles. Spence is extremely fast off the edge with excellent agility to weave around blockers. He can have issues getting off blocks when linemen get their hands on him, but they have a hard time getting a hold of him. While Spence did well in practice, team sources said he did not do well in their interviews. That was the same feedback from the combine.
Spence overwhelmed weaker competition in 2015 with 63 tackles with 22.5 for a loss and 11.5 sacks. Some teams see Spence as a first-round caliber player while others rate him in the second round, aside from his off-the-field issues. With the character concerns, Spence could slip to the second round. Other players with similar off-the-field issues of drug use and/or leaving their original school like Randy Gregory, Janoris Jenkins or Tyrann Mathieu were all second-day picks.
8/22/15: Spence has speed off the edge with some natural strength. He played well for Ohio State in 2013, collecting 52 tackles, 14.5 tackles for a loss, eight sacks, one forced fumble and two passes broken up. However to end that season, Spence was suspended for three games. He was then suspended in 2014 for repeated failed drug tests.
Spence transferred to Eastern Kentucky and was arrested in May of 2015 for public intoxication.
Kamalei Correa*, 3-4OLB, Boise State
Height: 6-2. Weight: 243. Arm: 31.63. 40 Time: 4.69. Projected Round (2016): 2-3. 4/27/16: Sources from multiple teams say that Correa graded out as a second-rounder. They like his edge-rushing skills and his presence, but he isn't physical or strong against the run. Correa will have to improve in those areas for the NFL.
Correa totaled 39 tackles with 11 for a loss, seven sacks and three forced fumbles in 2015. His best season came as a sophomore when he notched 59 tackles, 19 for a loss, two forced fumbles and 12 sacks. The junior's best fit could come as an inside/outside linebacker in a 3-4 defense. He had an impressive workout at the combine.
Shilique Calhoun, 3-4OLB, Michigan State
Height: 6-4. Weight: 251. Arm: 34.25. 40 Time: 4.82. Projected Round (2016): 2-3. 4/27/16: Calhoun played well as a senior. He showed an improved set of pass-rushing moves, including a spin move and a rip move. Calhoun looks like he added more functional strength to hold up in run support and shed blocks in the pass rush.
In 2015, Calhoun recorded 10.5 sacks, 49 tackles, 15 for a loss, one forced fumble and three passes batted. He could fit a 3-4 or 4-3 defense. Sources have said they also like Calhoun's leadership in the locker room.
8/22/15: Calhoun needs to add some weight for the NFL if he's going to remain a defensive end. It would help if Calhoun added some functional strength as well. He also needs to add to his repertoire of pass-rushing moves. After a slow start to 2014, Calhoun played better in the second half of the year. The junior speed rusher recorded 39 tackles with 12.5 tackles for a loss, eight sacks and a forced fumble for the season.
Calhoun was one of the top players on Michigan State's superb defense in 2013. For the year, he recorded 37 tackles with 14 tackles for a loss, 7.5 sacks, two forced fumbles and an interception.
Yannick Ngakoue, 3-4OLB, Maryland
Height: 6-2. Weight: 252. Arm: 32.5. 40 Time: 4.75. Projected Round (2016): 2-3. 4/27/16: Ngakoue played well in 2015 with 38 tackles, 15 for a loss, 13.5 sacks, one forced fumble and one pass breakup. While he hasn't received a lot of publicity, he could have a lot of potential as a pro edge rusher. Ngakoue has length to him with speed off the edge. He flashed some moves during his Maryland career and played well when taking on future NFL linemen. Ngakoue had a strong combine, and some sources say they would have Ngakoue in the top 50 on their draft boards.
8/22/15: Ngakoue caught my eye in 2014 when he was owning Iowa left tackle Brandon Scherff (the fifth-overall pick to the Redskins in the 2015 NFL Draft). Ngakoue was able to beat Scherff with speed and showed the ability to convert speed to power, putting Scherff on roller skates. In other games Ngakoue played well against Michigan State left tackle Jack Conklin and Ohio State left tackle Taylor Decker. Ngakoue totaled 37 tackles with 13.5 for a loss, six sacks, and two passes broken up for the year. His best fit could come as a 3-4 outside linebacker.
Charles Tapper, 3-4OLB, Oklahoma
Height: 6-2. Weight: 271. Arm: 38.13. Hand: 10.5. 40 Time: 4.59. Projected Round (2015): 3-4. 4/27/16: At the combine, Tapper was tremendous and sent a real jolt into his draft stock. He had an electric 40 time and did well in the field drills. Tapper really helped himself by showing surprising speed and athleticism.
In 2015, Tapper had 50 tackles, 10 for a loss, seven sacks, four forced fumbles and three passes batted. He was very steady for the Sooners and displayed improved pass-rushing skills as a senior. Tapper had a decent week at the Senior Bowl, but wasn't overly impressive. He looks like a solid, but unspectacular, left end for a 4-3 defense. He also could be an outside linebacker in a 3-4 defense.
8/22/15: In 2014, Tapper had 37 tackles with three sacks, one forced fumble, two passes broken up and 7.5 tackles for a loss as a 3-4 defensive end. He broke into the starting lineup for Oklahoma in 2013 and had a strong debut as a First-Team All-Big XII selection by the conference's coaches. The sophomore totaled 49 tackles with nine tackles for a loss, 5.5 sacks, and a pass batted. Tapper has a nice combination of size, strength and quickness.
Scooby Wright III*, 3-4OLB, Arizona
Height: 6-0. Weight: 239. Arm: 30.5. 40 Time: 4.90. Projected Round (2016): 3-4. 4/27/16: Wright is going to be a challenging evaluation given how injuries robbed him of the 2015 season. He is a good run defender who can make plays as a pass-rusher. Teams viewing his medical check at the NFL Scouting Combine positively would be huge for him.
Wright had a slow 40 time in Indianapolis and didn't impress at his pro day, but he is a pure football player who is short on the physical skill set. Wright has good instincts with a combination of pass rush and run defense, though teams feel that he could be short on size and speed for the next level.
Against New Mexico in bowl season, Wright flashed a game that would've been typical from him in 2014. He had 15 tackles, 3.5 for a loss, two sacks and a forced fumble. Wright didn't look as explosive off the edge or fast flying around the field, but his instincts to make big plays were clear despite being less than 100 percent. Wright had one tackle in the 2015 season opener before suffering a knee injury. He underwent surgery for a lateral meniscus tear and missed two weeks before coming back against UCLA. Wright had seven tackles versus the Bruins, but missed a number of tackles. He looked like he rushed back too quickly, and then missed the remainder of the regular season because of a foot sprain he suffered in that game.
8/24/15: Wright took college football by storm in 2014. He was a pass-rushing force for the Wildcats and one of the top defenders in the Pac-12. Wright notched 14 sacks with 163 tackles, 29 tackles for a loss and six forced fumbles for the year. He had a huge game against Oregon to help lead the Wildcats to a regular-season upset of the Ducks. Wright is an instinctive linebacker and was all over the field for Arizona. He played a huge part in the Wildcats reaching the Pac-12 Championship. In 2013, Wright had 83 tackles with 9.5 for a loss and an interception.
Alex McCalister*, 3-4OLB, Florida
Height: 6-6. Weight: 239. Arm: 36. 40 Time: 4.80. Projected Round (2016): 3-5. 4/27/16: McCalister was an effective situational pass-rusher for Florida over the past few seasons. He is fast off the edge with nice length and athleticism. Sources say they are grading McCalister in the mid-rounds and like his potential to be a role player quickly.
In 2015, the redshirt junior totaled 26 tackles with 9.5 for a loss and 6.5 sacks in nine games. He had 23 tackles with six sacks in 2014. McCalister had some minor off-the-field incidents, but team sources say that it wasn't a big deal and he's a good kid.
Dadi Nicolas, 3-4OLB, Virginia Tech
Height: 6-3. Weight: 235. Arm: 35. Hand: 10. 40 Time: 4.74. Projected Round (2015): 3-5. 4/27/16: Nicolas had 24 tackles, seven tackles for a loss, 2.5 sacks and one pass broken up in 2015. While the sacks didn't come in big numbers in his final season, he was still pressuring the quarterback. Some teams have graded out Nicolas for late in the second day of the 2016 NFL Draft as a situational pass-rusher. Teams view his draft range as the third or fourth round.
At the Senior Bowl, Nicolas showed his talent to rush off the edge, but he struggled in the run-game one-on-ones. Nicolas had a strong performance at the combine.
8/22/15: If Nicolas were larger, he would be a high first-round pick due to his natural pass-rushing skills. He will have to move to outside linebacker for the next level and could fit in a 3-4 defense.
In 2014, Nicolas totaled 72 tackles with 18.5 tackles for a loss and nine sacks. He recorded 32 tackles with seven tackles for a loss and four sacks in 2013. Nicolas had 17 tackles with 3.5 tackles for a loss and two sacks the year before.
Victor Ochi, 3-4OLB, Stony Brook
Height: 6-2. Weight: 245. Arm: 33.75. 40 Time: 4.86. Projected Round (2016): 4-6. 4/27/16: Throughout the East-West Shrine, Ochi grabbed one's attention with his great get-off and pure speed around the edge. He did very well in the pass-rushing one-on-ones as his lightning first-step made him very hard for blockers to reach. Ochi made himself some money in St. Petersburg, but his combine 40 was much slower than expected and harmful to his draft stock.
If Ochi can make a NFL roster, his role would probably be as a situational pass-rusher to start out his career. While he has functional upper body strength, Ochi is still too undersized to be a three-down edge defender. His weight is below 250 pounds - in the mid-240s - and therefore he is a better fit as a developmental 3-4 outside linebacker.
Eric Striker, 3-4OLB, Oklahoma
Height: 5-11. Weight: 228. Arm: 31. Hand: 10. 40 Time: 4.80. Projected Round (2015): 4-6. 4/27/16: At the combine, Striker had a very slow 40 time for an undersized speed rusher. He played well for Oklahoma in 2015, recording 67 tackles with 19 for a loss, 7.5 sacks and three forced fumbles. Striker would be ranked higher, but he is a tweener between 3-4 outside linebacker, safety and 4-3 outside linebacker. The lattermost is probably his best spot for the NFL given his body type, but the thing he does best, above all else, is rush the passer off the edge. Striker may not translate to the next level.
8/24/15: Striker had 68 tackles with 17 tackles for a loss, nine sacks and five passes broken up in 2014. He finished the 2013 season with a coming-out party against Alabama in the Sugar Bowl, dominating Crimson Tide left tackle Cyrus Kouandjio for three sacks and seven tackles. Striker collected a total of 50 tackles, 6.5 sacks, 10.5 tackles for a loss and a forced fumble that year.
Jordan Jenkins, 3-4OLB, Georgia
Height: 6-3. Weight: 259. Arm: 34.25. 40 Time: 4.80. Projected Round (2016): 4-6. 4/27/16: Jenkins had 59 tackles with 10.5 for a loss, four sacks and two forced fumbles in 2015. He's a gritty defender at the point of attack. Jenkins is a solid player who is a jack of all trades and master of none. He played in the Senior Bowl, but didn't impress. That was the same outcome at the combine.
8/24/15: Jenkins recorded 70 tackles with 9.5 tackles for a loss, five sacks, a pass batted and a forced fumble in 2014. He flashed at times, but he was inconsistent. Jenkins hasn't been the force he was expected to be as the replacement for Jarvis Jones. There was a lot of hype about Jenkins entering the 2013 season, but the sophomore didn't completely justify it with his performance. Jenkins had a solid, but unspectacular, year with 45 tackles, five sacks, 12 tackles for a loss and a forced fumble.
Stephen Weatherly, 3-4OLB, Vanderbilt
Height: 6-4. Weight: 267. Arm: 34.5. 40 Time: 4.61. Projected Round (2016): 4-6. 4/27/16: Weatherly was a surprise early entry into the 2016 NFL Draft and probably should have returned for his senior year. In 2015, the junior recorded 46 tackles with 9.5 for loss, three passes batted, two forced fumbles and 3.5 sacks. He totaled 55 tackles, 12.5 for a loss and 4.5 sacks as a sophomore.
Weatherly worked out really well at the combine. He was fast in the 40 and performed solidly in the field drills.
Joe Schobert, 3-4OLB, Wisconsin
Height: 6-1. Weight: 247. Arm: 31. Hand: 10. 40 Time: 4.76. Projected Round (2015): 4-6. 4/27/16: Schobert broke out in 2015, racking up 79 tackles, 19.5 for a loss, 9.5 sacks, five forced fumbles and two passes broken up. The former walk-on had 69 tackles, three sacks, seven passes batted and two forced fumbles as a junior. He had a decent combine performance.
Schobert beat offensive tackles with speed around the edge in 2015. He added a lot of weight during his Badgers career and should continue to do so - if able - in order to be a 3-4 outside linebacker in the NFL. Schobert looked limited athletically at the Senior Bowl.
James Cowser, 3-4OLB, Southern Utah
Height: 6-3. Weight: 248. Arm: 32.88. 40 Time: 4.82. Projected Round (2016): 4-6. 4/27/16: Over the past three seasons, Cowser was a force for the Thunderbirds. The senior totaled 68 tackles with 19 for a loss, 13 sacks, and four forced fumbles in 2015. It was very impressive that he finished his career with his highest single-season sack total considering he was a known commodity. In 2014, Cowser had an excellent season with 28.5 tackles for a loss, 85 tackles and 11.5 sacks. As a sophomore, he totaled 77 tackles 10.5 sacks coming off 7.5 sacks as a freshman.
On top of the record of production, Cowser had a nice combine workout. He's a sleeper prospect for Day 3 who could fit well as a 3-4 outside linebacker.
Tyrone Holmes, 3-4OLB, Montana
Height: 6-4. Weight: 250. Projected 40 Time: 4.97. Projected Round (2016): 5-7. 4/27/16: Holmes dominated for Montana in 2015 as he totaled 18 sacks, 87 tackles with 21.5 for a loss and three forced fumbles. The previous season, he had 7.5 sacks. Holmes flashed his pass-rushing skills at the East-West Shrine, and that make him a worthy late-round flyer as a potential situational edge rusher.
Curt Maggitt, 3-4OLB, Tennessee
Height: 6-3. Weight: 244. Projected 40 Time: 4.75. Projected Round (2016): 6-FA. 4/27/16: Maggitt recorded seven tackles with three for a loss across two games before a hip injury cost him the season. He decided not to pursue a sixth year of eligibility and return to Tennessee. Maggitt didn't work out at the combine.
8/24/15: In 2014, Maggitt had 48 tackles with 15 tackles for a loss, one forced fumble and 11 sacks. He has played well for Tennessee and been a good blitzer. Maggitt didn't play in 2013 while taking a medical redshirt. He also had an ACL tear in 2012. Prior to the injury, the sophomore had notched 30 tackles with two sacks, five tackles for a loss and two forced fumbles through nine games. Maggitt had 56 tackles as a freshman in 2011.
Theiren Cockran, 3-4OLB, Minnesota
Height: 6-6. Weight: 255. Projected 40 Time: 4.78. Projected Round (2016): 6-FA. 4/27/16: In 2015, Cockran notched 28 tackles with seven for a loss, three sacks and two passes batted. He has potential, but didn't produce enough pass rush. Cockran didn't participate in the combine.
8/22/15: Cockran has some ability and a skill set, but needs to produce more. He recorded 23 tackles, seven for a loss and four sacks with a forced fumble in 2014, but the junior lost his starting job late in the season against Iowa. Cockran was still an All-Big Ten honorable mention. As a sophomore, he played better with 30 tackles and 7.5 sacks and 10 tackles for a loss.
Silverberry Mouhon, 3-4OLB, Cincinnati
Height: 6-4. Weight: 248. Projected 40 Time: 4.73. Projected Round (2015): 7-FA. 4/27/16: Mouhon recorded 42 tackles with 4.5 sacks and eight tackles for a loss in 2015.
8/22/15: Mouhon recorded 46 tackles with four sacks, five tackles for a loss, one pass batted and a forced fumble in 2014. He had an impressive sophomore season with 41 tackles, 12.5 tackles for a loss, 9.5 sacks, two forced fumbles and a pass batted. Mouhon has some natural speed-rushing characteristics.
Jimmy Bean, 3-4OLB, Oklahoma State
Height: 6-5. Weight: 264. Arm: 33.5. Projected 40 Time: 4.82. Projected Round (2016): 7-FA. 4/27/16: Bean started the 2015 season well before cooling down and then tearing his ACL in his eighth games. He totaled 25 tackles, 10.5 for a loss and 5.5 sacks in his year. Bean went to the combine but didn't work out.
8/22/15: Bean was a solid edge defender for the Cowboys in 2014. He had 42 tackles with six for a loss, three forced fumbles and 3.5 sacks. Bean broke into the starting lineup in 2013 with 34 tackles, 9.5 for a loss, and 4.5 sacks. The senior needs to ramp up his pass rush in 2015.
Denzel Devall, 3-4OLB, Alabama
Height: 6-2. Weight: 250. Projected 40 Time: 4.74. Projected Round (2016): FA. 4/27/16: In 2015, Devall had 24 tackles with five for a loss, one sack and two passes batted. He didn't work out at the combine.
8/24/15: Devall had 11 tackles with one tackles for a loss in 2014. He lost playing time to Reggie Ragland and Trey DePriest. Devall had 30 tackles with five tackles for a loss, three sacks, one pass broken up and two forced fumbles in 2013.