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NFL Combine 2012 Recap: Day 3 2/25 Part 2

Posted by James Rowe on February 25, 2012 – 6:59 pm in: 2012, NFL Draft

Defensive Front 7 Preview and Weigh In’s

The 2012 NFL Draft has 2 Defensive front 7 prospects in my top 10, DT Michael Brockers from LSU and DE Quinton Coples from UNC. Brockers checked in at an impressive 6’5 322lbs, and is by far my top DT prospect at this time. Coples has great size at 6’6 284lbs, and should be able to impact the pass and run defense.

SEC pass rushers Courtney Upshaw from Alabama and Melvin Ingram from South Carolina are the top DE/OLB prospects, and should be top 15 picks. Upshaw has NFL ready size at 6’2 272lbs and should transition to the NFL easily in a 3-4 defense. Ingram is a tad shorter than Upshaw at 6’1 261lbs, and it will be interesting to see how these 2 prospects move around in the drills and 40 yard dash.

The top NT prospect Dontari Poe from Memphis and Alameda Ta’amu from Washington both showed up at the combine at 345lbs+, and will likely both be 1st round picks. Another potential 1st round DT is Fletcher Cox from Mississippi State, and he checked in at 6’4 298lbs. He could have a Corey Luiget type rise in he performs well in the drills, and he is a top 20 prospect right now for me.

Nick Perry from USC and Zach Brown from UNC are 2 OLB prospects that are poised to have outstanding workouts on Monday. Perry’s best fit in the NFL is as a 3-4 OLB, and he showed up today at 6’3 271lbs. Brown has the potential to run a 4.4 40, and fits as a WLB in a 4-3 defense at 6’1 244lbs.

The top ILB prospects Luke Kuechly  from Boston College and Vontaze Burfict  from Arizona State both should have a lot of eyes on them if they participate in the drills. Kuechly at 6’3 243lbs has been projected to go in the top 15 for most the season, while Burfict at 6’1 248lbs has seen his stock go down as the draft process has moved on.

A few day 2 Defensive front 7 prospects I like are DE/OLB Chandler Jones from Syracuse, ILB Audie Cole from North Carolina State and Kendall Reyes from UCONN. Jones at 6’5 266lbs stock will really be determined by his workouts and 40 time, and could even see a jump into the late 1st round. Cole is a very solid LB prospect that can likely play all 3 LB spots in a 4-3 defense, and should perform well in the workouts with the other LB prospects. Reyes stock has steadily gone up into the 2nd round now, and at 6’4 299lbs he should be able to play DT in a 4-3 or DE in a 3-4 in the NFL.

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