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2016 NFL Draft Scouting Report: DE DeForest Buckner

Steve Shoup

DE DeForest Buckner- Oregon:

 

Pros:

  • Excellent size for a 3-4 DE, has the length to really disrupt pass lanes if he doesn’t get to the quarterback.
  • Got better each season, really had a big year in 2015, and should continue to develop going forward.
  • Has long arms and powerful hands that he can use to keep blockers off of him and bring down the ball carrier.
  • Really good run defender, really tough to run right at.
  • Good first step, especially for his size.
  • Has really improved as a pass rusher and should generate good numbers in a 1 gap system.
  • Powerful defensive lineman, who should consistently push the pocket even if he doesn’t get free for the sack.
  • Probably a better 3-4 player, but talented enough to play in any scheme.

 

Cons:

  • Will play too tall at times, needs to play with more consistent leverage at the NFL level.
  • Still more raw, than refined at this point. Might take a year to get himself playing at a high level.
  • Was pass rush production in 2015 a growth trend or a flash in the pan is a huge determining question for teams.

 

Overview:

Buckner has been on NFL draft radar the past couple of years, but his breakout 2015 campaign shot him to the top of many draft boards. He now looks like a more consistent/complete player and well worth a top 10 pick investment.

Though he can play in any scheme, Buckner’s profile fits best in a one gap 3-4 system that will allow him to play more 5-tech than a 3-4 system. Buckner’s length and power could give offensive tackles more problems than interior linemen. Buckner is already an excellent run defender and last season he really improved as a pass rusher to make him a complete player.

Buckner is still developing as a pass rusher, but if what he showed on the field in 2015 wasn’t a fluke, the future is bright in this area for Buckner. He probably won’t reach J.J. Watt level of effectiveness, but he can become a very good 3-4 DE and a building block on defense.

 

 



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