DE CHRIS SMITH, ARKANSAS

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6’3” – 268 lbs. – 4.70e

STATISTICAL PROFILE:

2010: 3 tackles, 1 PD
2011: 31 – 6.0 – 3.5, 2 QBH, 1 PD
2012: 52 – 13.0 – 9.5, 12 QBH, 1 FF, 4 PD

OVERVIEW:

Joined Arkansas in 2010 as a 230-pound defensive end in a reserve role, but gained over twenty pounds as a sophomore, appearing in the team’s defensive end rotation and making three starts. In 2012, was productive as a full-time starter, earning an honorable mention All-SEC selection. Gained another seventeen pounds prior to his senior season.

STRENGTHS:

•    Will graduate with over two years of productive SEC starting experience.
•    Has added nearly forty pounds of bulk during his collegiate career.
•    Possesses prototypical size and bulk for a pass rushing prospect.
•    Fairly explosive off the line of scrimmage, favors the speed rush.
•    Capable of bending the edge and redirecting relatively smoothly.
•    Closing burst is above-average, can seal the deal when in position.
•    Has some experience rushing the passer out of a two-point stance.
•    Drops into coverage on occasion, albeit rarely, and looks comfortable.
•    Could realistically fit into a 3-4 defense at outside linebacker.

WEAKNESSES:

•    Despite his bulk, struggles to anchor when run at, can be easily turned.
•    Gets stuck on blocks if he doesn’t win with his initial burst off the snap.
•    Must develop additional rush moves and be more active with his hands.
•    Overall instincts need lots of work, struggles to anticipate misdirection.
•    Gap discipline in the run game is a problem, sacrifices contain too often.
•    Can be too aggressive when attempting to anticipate snap counts.
•    Very much a finesse player, not someone who reestablishes the line.

SUMMARY:

Smith is an interesting prospect because of his ideal build for a pass rusher, his natural athleticism, and his burst off the snap, but despite his experience there are still plenty of weak areas in his game, notably his awareness, his anchor strength when run at, and his lack of a diverse repertoire of rush moves. He has all the physical tools to be successful, but will require considerable work under a talented defensive line coach to succeed. RD 4

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