Nick Bosa, DE, Ohio State
Height: 6-3. Weight: 265. Projected 40 Time: 4.75. Projected Round (2020): 1. 8/22/18: Like his older brother Joey, Nick Bosa looks like an elite edge defender. He is fast off the edge with the ability to fire by tackles to get upfield. Bosa has excellent hands with functional strength to fight off blocks, a burst to close, and puts quarterbacks down hard. In the ground game, Bosa is solid, but it is his pass-rush potential that excites.
Bosa had 34 tackles, 8.5 sacks, two passes batted and one forced fumble in 2017. He was the Buckeyes' best defensive end even though he rotated with Sam Hubbard, Tyquan Lewis and Jalyn Holmes. Bosa could explode as a junior now that those other three have left for the NFL, which should leave Bosa playing every down in 2018. As a freshman, Bosa played well for Ohio State, recording 29 tackles with seven tackles for a loss and five sacks.
Clelin Ferrell, DE, Clemson
Height: 6-5. Weight: 265. Projected 40 Time: 4.77. Projected Round (2020): 1. 8/22/18: In 2017, Clemson fielded a defensive line that was comprised of future first-round picks, and Ferrell was arguably the most consistent of the bunch. He created a lot of the big plays for the Tigers' other defensive linemen with the instant pressure he caused off the snap. Fellow defensive end Austin Bryant spent 2017 playing himself into an early-rounder, but Bryant did well cleaning up a lot of scrambling quarterbacks running away from Ferrell.
Ferrell has superb speed with athleticism and the ability to bend around the corner. He is very fast off the snap to get upfield and put quick pressure on the quarterback. Ferrell is more disruptive than his stat line indicates. In 2017, he totaled 66 tackles with 18 tackles for a loss, 9.5 sacks, one pass batted and two forced fumbles. In 2016, Ferrell had an impressive redshirt freshman season for the Tigers as he totaled 44 tackles with 12.5 tackles for a loss, six sacks and two passes batted.
Joe Jackson, DE, Miami
Height: 6-5. Weight: 258. Projected 40 Time: 4.65. Projected Round (2020): 1. 8/22/18: Jackson is a dangerous edge defender with a nose for the quarterback. He has excellent speed off the edge to go along with length and size. With his nice build, Jackson could grow into a solid base end in a 4-3 defense. In 2017, he had 59 tackles with 11.5 for a loss, 6.5 sacks, two passes batted and one forced fumble. He was impressive in his play against Notre Dame left tackle Mike McGlinchey, a first-round pick and starting tackle in the NFL. As a freshman, Jackson had 8.5 sacks with 32 tackles, 11.5 tackles for a loss and two forced fumbles. In speaking to a general manager, they said they think that Jackson will go high in his draft. Another national scout said they liked Jackson's length but felt his strength and technique needed work, thus they didn't have him high just yet.
A.J. Epenesa*, DE, Iowa
Height: 6-5. Weight: 277. Projected 40 Time: 4.80. Projected Round (2020): 1-2. 8/22/18: Epenesa is a thick, physical and athletic defensive end who flashed pass rush ability during an impressive freshman season for the Hawkeyes. In 2017, Epenesa totaled 4.5 sacks, 5.5 tackles for a loss, 15 tackles and one forced fumble. He looked like he was just scratching the surface of his potential.
Brian Burns, DE/OLB, Florida State
Height: 6-5. Weight: 218. Projected 40 Time: 4.72. Projected Round (2020): 1-3. 8/22/18: In 2017, Burns had 48 tackles with 13.5 for a loss, 4.5 sacks and four passes batted. He put more pressure on the quarterback than the numbers indicate. Burns notched 9.5 sacks in his debut season for Florida State and finished 2016 in impressive fashion. Scouts have said that Burns has a ton of athletic ability and upside. He should gain weight as he ages and fill out to being a starting edge defender.
Terrell Lewis, DE/OLB, Alabama
Height: 6-5. Weight: 254. Projected 40 Time: 4.71. Projected Round (2020): 1-3. 8/22/18: Lewis was playing well in the 2017 season opener before sustaining an injury that cost him most of the season. He totaled just 16 tackles with a sack for the year, but scouts who watched 2018 spring football were raving about him. Sources believe Lewis has a ton of potential, but tragedy struck again as Lewis tore an ACL in the summer of 2018. He is trying to come back and play later in the 2018 season, but that seems unlikely.
The edge defender, formerly known as Terrell Hall, Lewis developed behind the scenes for Alabama in 2016. Scouts have told me that in practice Lewis was very impressive as he is big and quick, plus possesses surprising change-of-direction skills. They said that Lewis has a great build and is dripping with upside. He has really impressed them watching him in practice during the past few seasons.