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John Dewan's Stat of the Week

The Deepest Position in the 2019 NFL Draft

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By Bryce Rossler

Defensive line is the deepest position in the 2019 NFL Draft.

Between interior and edge players, there are 16 players in the SIS Football Rookie Handbook that we project to develop into either a high-level starter or Pro Bowler.

Alabama’s Quinnen Williams and Houston’s Ed Oliver headline the defensive tackles, while Ohio State’s Nick Bosa, Mississippi State’s Montez Sweat, and Kentucky’s Josh Allen are the highest-graded edges.

With so many teams coveting pass rushers, let’s take a look at some of the players who excelled at pressuring the quarterback during the 2018 college season.

Amongst draft-eligible edge and interior Defensive Linemen, last season’s leaders in terms of Pressure Rate—along with their ranks amongst all qualifying college defenders—were as follows:

Pressure Rate Leaderboard, Edges, 2018 (min. 200 pass rush snaps)

PlayerPressure RateOverall Rank
Josh Allen27%1st
Jaylon Ferguson19%2nd
Clelin Ferrell17%6th
Montez Sweat17%7th
Brian Burns16%13th

Pressure Rate Leaderboard, DT, 2018 (min. 200 pass rush snaps)

PlayerPressure RateOverall Rank
Quinnen Williams17%8th
Christian Wilkins12%55th
Ed Oliver11%63rd
Dexter Lawrence10%82nd
Isaiah Buggs10%83rd

Absent from this list is Bosa, whose final collegiate season was cut short due to an injury he sustained against Texas Christian. In just 66 pass rush snaps, he posted a pressure rate of 20%, which would have been good for second overall had he met the minimum snap requirement.

Williams was the only draftable interior player to rank in the top 50 across all positions, and he made the cut with room to spare. His pressure rate of 17% was good for eighth overall out of 428 qualifying defenders in college last year.

The draft is just a week away and, as you can see, isn’t short on pass-rushing talent. If you’re interested in more advanced stats like these, as well as traditional scouting reports, it’s not too late to get your Handbook before the Draft. You can purchase a copy here.

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