WB #43 Darron Lee, Ohio St.**

6’2” – 235 lbs. – 4.65e

Redshirted in his first season of eligibility, then became a full-time starter the following season, a role which he retained into 2015 before declaring for the draft. Official height is more than adequate but looks to have been exaggerated. Has gained thirty pounds since height school and has reasonable thickness, with a somewhat top-heavy build; nonetheless, will probably be limited to the weak side of an even defensive front, with little value to teams running odd base defenses. Patient, if a little bit conservative in run support; doesn’t always stick his nose in and takes some risk-averse angles which allow opponents to gain additional yardage. Often overruns his spot but does a pretty good job of beating opposing running backs to the edge and redirecting them back inside. Flows well to the ball, but isn’t often the first man to arrive at the ballcarrier; top-end speed is more impressive than his change-of-direction ability. Struggles to break down, sacrificing some of the opportunities he’s created for himself. Although he looks like he’s playing on skates at times, generally takes on blocks a little bit better than his size would indicate. Needs to clean up his tackling technique; more of a hitter at this point, and not a particularly forceful one at that. Has been asked to rush the passer off the edge, with enough quickness to create some pressure in that capacity. Generally runs past the pocket and tries to spin back to the quarterback; doesn’t have many other moves to disengage himself from opposing linemen. Looks smooth when making spot drops in zone coverage, with plenty of range due to his athleticism; often showed a blitz look pre-snap and ran out to the intermediate level once the play started. Rarely covers the tight end, but fits the athletic profile of someone who might be able to handle those responsibilities. Also didn’t do as much work over slot receivers as you’d like to see, given his above-average athleticism. Clearly a player physically and athletically-suited to the pass-oriented modern game, but whose raw mental tools and technique limit the amount of plays he’d otherwise be in position to make. Would be best in a simple system which allows him to take advantage of his speed without having to process too much information; the type of player who may have declared a year early and could have improved his stock fairly substantially with another season at the college level, but who nonetheless will likely draw some second-day interest from teams intrigued by his athleticism and willing to be patient with him.

Games watched: Michigan (’14), Michigan St. (’14), Michigan St. (’15)

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