2017 NFL Draft Defensive Positional Rankings

EDGE Rusher

  1. Myles Garrett, Texas A&M
  2. Charles Harris, Missouri
  3. Takkarist McKinley, UCLA
  4. Taco Charlton, Michigan
  5. T.J. Watt, Wisconsin

Summary: Garrett is the stand out in this class. He is my number one overall player and has been for nine months. Harris has great hands and when his motor is going can be unstoppable. McKinley and Charlton are both very good players with the talent to develop into great players. Watt, the younger brother of J.J. Watt, has only been on defense for 18 months and could develop into one of the top rushers in this class.

Defensive Line

  1. Solomon Thomas, Stanford
  2. Jonathan Allen, Alabama
  3. Malik McDowell, Michigan State
  4. Caleb Brantley, Florida
  5. Carlos Watkins, Clemson

Summary: Thomas and Allen are both capable of playing inside or out and are two of the best players in this entire draft class. McDowell, when he wants to be, is as good as the top two guys. Brantley and Watkins both have motors that can be hot or cold, with Watkins being a better rusher. Brantley may go undrafted after being charged with misdemeanor battery in an incident where he allegedly knocked a woman unconscious.

Linebacker

  1. Haason Reddick, Temple
  2. Reuben Foster, Alabama
  3. Jarrad Davis, Florida
  4. Zach Cunningham, Vanderbilt
  5. Raekwon McMillan, Ohio State

Summary: Reddick is an explosive athlete who can cover and tackle. Foster, if not for a few off of the field issues, would probably be my top linebacker. He is a heat seeking missile at the linebacker spot. Davis, if he gets better at releasing from blockers could be the best in this class. Cunningham and McMillan just make play after play but also struggle at times with tightness.

Cornerback

  1. Marshon Lattimore, Ohio State
  2. Quincy Wilson, Florida
  3. Gareon Conley, Ohio State
  4. Chidobe Awuzie, Colorado
  5. Tre’Davious White, LSU

Summary: Lattimore has the athleticism and ball skills to develop into a shut down corner. I love Wilson’s size and the way he battles on every play. Conley, who will drop after being accused of sexual assault, is long and athletic. Awuzie is a swiss army knife and can do a little bit of everything but I believe lacks great ball skills. White is as consistent a guy as I watched, but I do not think he likes being physical. If not for a knee injury Washington CB Sidney Jones would be number two on this list.

Safety

  1. Malik Hooker, Ohio State
  2. Jamal Adams, LSU
  3. Budda Baker, Washington
  4. Jabrill Peppers, Michigan
  5. Obi Melifonwu, UConn

Summary: Hooker is a single high, ball hawking, Ed Reed type, do it all safety. Adams is an all-around safety, who I do not think is as physical as some others will give him credit for. Baker is my draft crush. An undersized guy who plays with incredible heart and determination and shows great ball skills. Peppers, a man with no position, is best suited as an in the box safety in my opinion and is an athletic freak. Melifonwu at 6’4″ is a huge center fielder, with absolutely unbelievable athleticism and can develop into a mix of KAm Chancellor and Earl Thomas.

 

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