2017 NFL Draft- Defensive Ends

1. Myles Garrett (Texas A&M)– I was immediately impressed with him the minute I first watched him with the Aggies and he’s by far the best player in this draft class. He arrived at College Station as a five-star recruit and he didn’t disappoint at all in his three years at A&M. He’s a 6’4, 272-pound guy with outstanding athleticism and body control. His first step is very sudden and his second and third steps are just as good as his first. He has long arms and sets the edge very well as a run defender. He’s a scrappy guy that has violent hands to maintain separation between himself and the blockers and he also uses a variety of hand tactics to attack in many different ways. He displays great upper body strength to be a reliable finisher. I see Myles Garrett having an immediate impact as soon as he’s drafted.

2. Solomon Thomas (Stanford)– He’s shorter than your average defensive end. Standing at 6’3 and weighing in at 273 pounds, he has a power-packed frame with great weight distribution. He possesses the great initial quickness to slip the gaps, he can explode off the snap and has the ability to make himself skinny so he is able to fit through tight spaces. As a pass rusher, you need more than one move to get passed a defender and he has a variety of pass rush techniques to complement his quickness and his skillset including the classic over-arm swim move, he shows good club and rip moves and shows the quickness in his hands to shed the attempts of would-be blockers. I see a lot of Aaron Donald in his play as both guys really have to stand out to get the recognition they deserve since they are both smaller than many other defensive linemen/ends.

3. Taco Charlton (Michigan)– Whenever you heard people discussing the Michigan Wolverines’ defense, of course, the name Jabrill Peppers came up quite a bit and after him, you heard about Taco Charlton and to me, he was the Wolverines best defensive player as Jabrill was their most versatile. He has a very powerful upper body and uses his reach and long arms to knock down blockers and put them on skates. He’s a heavy-handed guy that controls the edge and he shows great vision across the field and sets his eyes to locate the ball-carrier. He has that initial burst which allows him to win most battles in the trenches and he never takes a play off which shows that he has a relentless motor and plays until the whistle is blown and the play is dead.

4. Derek Barnett (Tennessee)– He has the natural flexibility to dip, stay low and get underneath blockers. He’s not necessarily the quickest for the position, but he is able to control his momentum very well in small spaces to make a stop. He shows the necessary violence and skill in his hands to shed blocks and shows the effort to chase down ballcarriers. His vision on the line is one of a kind as he can swat the football down and deflect passes. You can still affect the play as a defensive end or tackle even if you’re blocked up front.

5. Carl Lawson (Auburn)– Just like another guy on this list, he’s shorter than most defensive ends but what he lacks in one area, he makes up for in others. He has a powerful and compact build that makes him a difficult matchup for many offensive linemen. He’s a pure bull rusher and overwhelms blockers when he catches them leaning ahead and that’s when he attacks. He’s a powerful tackler in the open field and explodes into the ball carrier. He shows good hand-eye coordination and can rip at the football to force a fumble. He’s forced three fumbles in his career at Auburn