Which Position Is Best in 2019 Draft?

April 19, 2019
Defensive line is the deepest position in the 2019 NFL Draft.
 

Between interior and edge players, there are 16 players in the SIS Football Rookie Handbook that we project to develop into either a high-level starter or Pro Bowler.

Alabama’s Quinnen Williams and Houston’s Ed Oliver headline the defensive tackles, while Ohio State’s Nick Bosa, Mississippi State’s Montez Sweat, and Kentucky’s Josh Allen are the highest-graded edges.

With so many teams coveting pass rushers, let’s take a look at some of the players who excelled at pressuring the quarterback during the 2018 college season.

Amongst draft-eligible edge and interior Defensive Linemen, last season’s leaders in terms of Pressure Rate—along with their ranks amongst all qualifying college defenders—were as follows:

 

Pressure Rate Leaderboard, Edges, 2018 (min. 200 pass rush snaps)

Player Pressure Rate Overall Rank
Josh Allen 

27%

1st

Jaylon Ferguson 

19%

2nd

Clelin Ferrell 

17%

6th

Montez Sweat 

17%

7th

Brian Burns 

16%

13th

 

Pressure Rate Leaderboard, DT, 2018 (min. 200 pass rush snaps)

Player

Pressure Rate

Overall Rank
Quinnen Williams

17%

8th

Christian Wilkins

12%

55th

Ed Oliver

11%

63rd

Dexter Lawrence

10%

82nd

Isaiah Buggs

10%

83rd

 

Absent from this list is Bosa, whose final collegiate season was cut short due to an injury he sustained against Texas Christian. In just 66 pass rush snaps, he posted a pressure rate of 20%, which would have been good for second overall had he met the minimum snap requirement.

Williams was the only draftable interior player to rank in the top 50 across all positions, and he made the cut with room to spare. His pressure rate of 17% was good for eighth overall out of 428 qualifying defenders in college last year.

The draft is just a week away and, as you can see, isn’t short on pass-rushing talent. If you’re interested in more advanced stats like these, as well as traditional scouting reports, it’s not too late to get your Handbook before the Draft. You can purchase a copy here.

 
 

COMMENTS (4 Comments, most recent shown first)

Cap0088
The DT numbers were interesting. My team needs pass rush help. I always enjoy the draft. For 2 days, I have my laptop out reading comments about players my team did or may draft.
7:24 AM Apr 23rd
 
MarisFan61
Vent: How about commenting on the substance of what I said?
(Do you disagree? If what I said is so, doesn't the site benefit from having such feedback?)
5:14 PM Apr 22nd
 
ventboys
I have an answer for you, Maris. In the bar business, one of the biggest problems with being popular is that you'll eventually develop a cadre of regulars who think they have the right to pass judgment on new customers when they come in.

They don't.
4:37 PM Apr 22nd
 
MarisFan61
I was curious to see what the reaction to this article would be, and it's hard to tell, since there haven't been any Comments. So I'll start.

This seems like a somewhat odd subject to have focused on in such an article here. I mean, is this really much of a question, especially in a vacuum, and especially on a site (i.e. ours) that's not about football?

I could see this as a sort of sidebar article amidst other stuff, like just-plain who are the best players in the draft. The subject here seems like a thing that's maybe the third or fourth subject we would get to, in any analytic look -- a relatively stray thing, and not a thing that I think anyone here was particularly interested to know.

A related thing that I'd say (with confidence) would have been of more interest -- still a stray thing, still a little odd to have been the focus of the one analytic piece about the upcoming draft, but at least of more interest -- would have been about the quarterbacks, like, how strong is this QB class?

OK folks, take it. :-)
12:29 PM Apr 22nd
 
 
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