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2024 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Chris Braswell (DE – Alabama)

2024 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Chris Braswell (DE – Alabama)

As the college football season barrels forward, FantasyPros will be taking a look at early NFL Draft scouting reports before the Combine in March. Here’s a look at Chris Braswell.

2024 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Chris Braswell

Chris Braswell (DE – Alabama)

6’3” – 255 lbs.

Background:

Five-star recruit who sat out his freshman season. He rotated in lightly (114 snaps) to the tune of 13 tackles the following year before he stepped into a rotational role as a junior and totaled 20-4.0-2.5 in 330 snaps. He’s currently on pace to top 500 total snaps as a senior and is enjoying a breakout year statistically.

Positives:

Really came into his own this season and put together a strong final year. Has added bulk over the course of his collegiate career and has a pretty solid build for a rush linebacker/edge. Came in at No. 7 on Bruce Feldman’s annual “Freaks List.” Often plays out of a two-point stance, but can work with his hand in the dirt as well. Plays the game with intensity and physicality. Shows discipline and toughness when setting the edge as a two-gap defender, with a solid anchor. Does a nice job of keeping his shoulders square to the line. Overall awareness to read keys and diagnose is good. Flashes heavy, active hands to discard in the run game when in position to make a play. Has some explosiveness to his first step, and does a nice job of converting speed to power. Uses a straight arm to the upper chest/neck area to control opposing tackles. When he gets his legs going, grinds down even bigger tackles to collapse the pocket. Can even be a handful when working his bull-rush as an inside move on passing downs. Works hard to successfully make spot drops in zone.

Negatives:

Overall pass-rush approach is still a bit limited; seems heavily power-based, and could benefit from diversifying his moves and developing additional counters. Occasionally looks a bit linear; relatively few snaps in which he’s winning with a speed rush and dipping his shoulder to bend back to the passer. Can get stuck on blocks for just a bit too long, leaving some potentially big plays on the table.

Summary:

A very powerful edge defender who has really come into his own this season, his combination of explosive power and relentlessness has made him one of the most effective bull-rushers in the class. While he’s officially more of a sub-package defender for the Tide, he plays starter-level snaps, and shows the discipline, awareness, and lower-body strength to two-gap effectively in the run game on early downs. Coming from a highly-respected SEC program, should be able to work his way onto the field early in his pro career, although to really reach his full potential, it’d be nice to see him continue deepening his repertoire of rush moves and counters. Should be a second-day pick.

Projection: Round 2

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