Can chase down running backs down from the backside
Natural feel for as an edge rusher
Skilled at shedding blocks
Has the strength to shed blocks
Experience against double-teams
Ready to play immediately
Could stand to add more strength for the NFL
Can get stronger at point of attack against downhill runs
Can lose gap integrity by biting on play fakes
Summary: As a freshman in 2018, Young totaled 19 tackles with 3.5 sacks and one forced fumble in backup duty as Ohio State had a lot of talented upperclassmen ahead of him. Early in the 2018 season, the Ohio State defense was dealt a huge blow when Nick Bosa went out with an injury, but the team's pass rush was still furious as Chase Young stepped up and harassed quarterbacks all year. Young broke out with 10.5 sacks with 15.5 tackles for a loss, 34 tackles, five passes broken up and two forced fumbles.
Young was just scratching the surface during his big sophomore season, taking his game to another level as a junior, rewriting Ohio State's record books while also serving a two-game suspension for taking a loan from a family member. From start to finish, he dominated in 2019, notching huge games against Nebraska, Miami of Ohio, Indiana, Cincinnati and Wisconsin. In the first meeting versus the Badgers, Young put together a record-setting game for Ohio State with four sacks, two forced fumbles and six tackles. In 2019, Young totaled 16.5 sacks with 46 tackles, six forced fumbles, three passes batted and a blocked kick.
Watching the tape, there is no doubt that Young is a special player. He jumps off the screen with his excellent skill set and the ability to cause havoc in the backfield. For the NFL, he looks like a No. 1 pass-rusher who could be a consistent double-digit sack producer with Pro Bowl potential early in his pro career.
In the pass rush, Young is truly dominant. He has an innate ability to get after the quarterback. Young has a quick first-step with a nice get-off that gets offensive tackles on their heels. Young has quickness around the edge and is able to close on the quarterback quickly. Young shows functional athleticism to sink his hips and dip under tackles to beat their blocks. He also is effective working to the inside as he has some strength to execute a rip move to the inside and also is able to knock tackles off balance with a hard shove and then cut to the inside to collapse the pocket. As a pass-rusher, Young shows nice vision to keep his eyes on the quarterback, and that along with his athleticism allow him to redirect for chasing down scrambling signal-callers. Young is a balanced pass-rusher and should continue to improve as he gains experience.
Young is not a star as a run defender, but he is also not a liability. He could stand to fight through blocks more, and adding more strength to shed is necessary for him to take on pro offensive tackles. Young can lose his gap integrity at times by biting on play fakes, and on other plays, he stays in containment too long. Those issues could get ironed out with more experience and pro coaching.
Young looks like a potential franchise defensive player as an edge rusher capable of producing double-digit sack seasons on an annual basis. He could be a player who goes to multiple Pro Bowls and is one of the most dangerous pass-rushers in the NFL. He is worthy of being a high first-round pick in any draft class.
Player Comparison: Julius Peppers. WalterFootball.com spoke with nine team sources including two general managers in Decemeber about how Young compared to other high edge-rusher prospects including Myles Garrett, Jadeveon Clowney, Khalil Mack, Von Miller, and the Bosa brothers. One of the team sources mentioned Peppers as the best comparison for Young, and it makes sense given their skill sets with speed and pass-rushing moves off the edge. Peppers could have a little more length than Young, while Young has a better motor than Peppers. I avoid making comparisons to future Hall of Famers, but in this case, there wasn't a better comparison for Young.