DE Duke Ejiofor, Wake Forest

6’4″ – 264 lbs. – 4.75e

Redshirted as a true freshman, then played over three-hundred snaps the following season. Missed five games due to injury the following season but still managed over four-hundred snaps. Became a full-time starter the following season in what was his most productive season, then reprised his role as a starter this past year. Long-limbed, thickly-built defensive end, if somewhat top-heavy. Takes snaps from both ends of the defensive line, often out of a four-point stance. Aggressive pass-rusher with an excellent motor. Has a varied approach to rushing the passer, with active hands and some power. At his best when he’s generating pressure on the inside, often by using a violent spin move, but uses swim, rip, and swipe moves with some effectiveness as well. Flashes the ability to generate push with his bull-rush as well. Struggles more when he’s asked to win the edge. Doesn’t really have the first step, bend, or dip to be a major threat around the corner. Also has some struggles with balance and struggles to absorb chip blocks. Ends up on the ground more often than he should. However, when he is able to find a clear lane to the passer, has the closing burst to finish. Gets his hands up to contest passing lanes. Looked good in coverage over a few snaps, making drops into zone coverage and carrying running backs into the flats. Pretty good run defender who flows well to the ball in an attacking one-gap defensive front. Has strong instincts and can make inside moves to blow up attempts in the backfield. Patient in backside contain, and can also defend the read option well. Gives excellent effort in pursuit; will chase to the sidelines and pick up some second-effort tackles. Can struggle to break down at times but has a wide tackling radius and what looks like a strong grip. Gets arm extension, but because of his slightly less-developed lower body and balance issues, may not be a great fit for teams which prefer their defensive ends to two-gap and set the edge. Only played one full season, so his medical checks may be important. May not be a major threat around the edge, but is a likable prospect with an excellent motor and a deep repertoire of moves, something which should smooth his learning curve.

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