Multiple Teams Grade Leal in Round 2 of the 2022 NFL Draft
Updated Oct. 15, 2021
By Charlie Campbell. Follow Charlie on Twitter @draftcampbell.
The 2022 NFL Draft looks like it has the potential to be a strong year for edge defenders and also could have some quality talent for the inside of the defensive line. One prospect who has generated some draft-media hype is Texas A&M defensive tackle DeMarvin Leal. A Sports Illustrated artcile even speculates that Leal could become the best defensive tackle in the NFL. Thus, some in the media have even projected Leal as a high first-round pick in the 2022 NFL Draft, but multiple team sources, however, told WalterFootball.com they have a second-round grade on Leal.
"He'll probably go in the second," said a director of player personnel. "I love his ability to rush the passer, and he's instinctive versus the run. But I have my struggles with him. I think he's going to have issues early on playing the run inside. And he has sort of a bad body. Feels like more of a package guy early on."
Leal is having his best season for the Aggies this year, recording 29 tackles and 4.5 sacks so far. As a sophomore, he had 37 tackles, 2.5 sacks, a forced fumble and interception.
"I don't see a high first-rounder with Leal," said a national scout. "He's not powerful or sudden, but he's agile and fluid. He will struggle inside."
There is still half a season to play, and if Leal goes on a tear producing sacks, that could help him to raise his draft grade. Additionally, some players with second-round grades end up getting selected in the first round every year because teams rarely ever have 32 players with true first-round grades. Leal could be in that mix as a player on the bubble between late first round and second round of the 2022 NFL Draft, but right now, multiple teams are giving him a second-round grade.