DE Solomon Thomas, Stanford

6’3” – 273 lbs. – 4.69

Redshirted, then enjoyed two productive seasons before foregoing his junior and senior seasons in order to declare for the draft. Size is fairly prototypical for a 4-3 defensive end, with solid height and bulk and arms which measured 33” at the Combine. Has good physical development for a base end on a four-man line; could probably gain or lose weight depending on what type of role teams have envisioned for him, ending up as more of a typical end in an event front or as more of a five-technique on a three-man line. Plays on the left side of a three-man line, with various different techniques; will often line up inside but also takes snaps as more of a five-technique end. Offers an impressive combination of power and athleticism. Very sudden with his initial move, with quick hands to prevent blockers from getting into his frame; penetration skills look promising but was asked to do a lot of two-gapping at Stanford, so they weren’t always on display. Does a good job of getting his arms extended and locking out blockers in the run game; strong enough to stack and shed at the appropriate time. Can generate push against opponents when he comes out low. Sets the edge well and looks pretty patient and disciplined, especially given his age. Flows to the ball pretty well with a nice tackling radius and the ability to control blockers. Draws a lot of extra blocking attention from opposing offensive lines. Also appears to offer high stamina and an excellent work rate; will chase to the sidelines and even make some tackles near the boundaries. Probably more explosive out of his stance than he is elite in terms of his closing burst as a pass rusher. That said, looks disruptive, with the ability to knife into the backfield on slants or even get penetration by splitting double teams. Bull rush skills from his play versus the run carry over to the passing game. Has shown the ability to dip his shoulder and bend back to the passer but it isn’t one of the main elements of his game; gets more pressure from the inside than he does as an edge rusher and might be asked to slide inside on some passing downs to create mismatches against opposing offensive guards. Although some teams may differ as to the best way to utilize his unique skillset at the next level, he looks like a very versatile, well-rounded player who should provide a team picking in the top ten of the draft with a long-term solution on the defensive line.

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