Dragon End ~ Carl Nassib ~ PennSylvania State Nittany Lions ~ 6066/276
For that reason, and in order to offer NomenClature that speaks not to archaic, obsolete "Positions", but rather to Skill Sets that accurately reflect the dynamic Changes of the 21st Century Game and the Roles they have spawned, I have undertaken to craft Terminology that is designed to break Skill Sets down as they really are.
Defensive Coordinators have, since Time Immemorial, employed highly creative terminology in devising Defenses and in designating Assignments. In that Spirit, I have admittedly indulged myself considerably in devising the following NomenClature. It is undeniably colorful, but I like to think that there's an underlying Logic, as well:
Dragons ~ This is my terminology for Players who may've played either Defensive End or what you Earthlings call "OutSide LineBacker" in College, and who in any case possess the Size to player either at the next level. They would generally be deployed as Ends in a 43 or as "OutSide LineBackers" in a 34, and have even been known to get deployed as Interior Rushers in the Nascar Package. The Prototype would generally be somewhere around 6050/265 or so.
Of course, where and how any given Coach chooses to deploy his Players is his Business. Players that I characterize as Dragons may often or even routinely line up anywhere, on any given Down. My only purpose is simply to identify what I perceive as Skill Sets, to distinguish types, if you will, and perhaps create a universal Point of Reference.
Dragons in a 43 are Defensive Linemen, but Dragons in a 34, for instance, are off the Line and may be asked to drop into Pass Coverage from time to time, so that capacity ~ observed or inferred is going to be part of my Evaluations.
When evaluating Dragons, this is how I break down the Attributes to which I pay most particular attention:
Power: Above all: Core Power. Torso Power is important, but Core Power, from the Knees to the Ribs, is absolutely crucial. All the upper body strength in the world still fails if you can't dig in your heels. But Core Power enables a Defensive Lineman to project Power in the Passing Game and to reject Power in the Running Game.
Agility: Launch Velocity, Acceleration, and above all: Fluidity or Core Agility. Core Agility is even more essential to sustained good Health ~ and to sustained good FootBall ~ than Core Power. The ability to react with Serpentine smoothness is a tremendous asset in all Aspects of the Game, and certainly in the Hand to Hand Combat that characterizes Trench Warfare. All the Power in the World goes only so far if you're stiff and lumbering out there.
Combat Skills: Paw Power, Mechanics ~ Hand Speed & Positioning ~ and of course: Frame.
Intangibles: Processing Speed and Motor. Processing Speed or Diagnostic Velocity is about how quickly and effectively one Reads & Reacts to how the Rapidly Roiling Tactical LandScape effects Blocking Schemes, and Motor is about Endurance and Drive: How much Work has been put into Conditioning, and how it manifests itself.
Run Defense: Power, Agility, Combat Skills, Navigating Traffic, Processing Speed, Motor, and Tackling.
Pass Coverage: Agility, Processing Speed, and Catch Point Capacity.
Pass Rush: Power, Agility, and Combat Skills.
Broken down into SubCategories, it'd go something like this:
* Core Power ~ lower body Power. Core Power trumps Torso Power. Tyrannosaurus Rex had exceptional Core Power.
* Torso Power ~ upper Body Power. Important, but not crucial. T Rex had lousy Torso Power...yet was King.
* Anchoring Strength against the Run.
* Drive Power in the Pass Rush.
* Fluidity, above all things: Core Agility & Flexibility makes everything possible.
* Launch Velocity ~ Speed into Contact off the Snap.
* Acceleration ~ Short Speed or Quickness.
* Frame ~ Arms, Hands, and above all: WingSpan.
* Field Vision ~ Reacting to the Tactical LandScape: It's all about Angles & Leverage.
* Paw Positioning ~ It's all about Angles & Leverage.
* Paw Persistence ~ RPMs: Activity & Persistence.
* FootWork ~ RPMs: Activity & Persistence.
* Processing Speed ~ Field Vision. Rapidly Reading & Reacting to the Offense.
* Motor ~ Intensity and Duration.
* Combat Skills
* Navigating Traffic
* Processing Speed
* Processing Speed
* Catch Point Capacity
* Combat Skills
Agility: Mediocre. Marginal Fluidity and mediocre Acceleration, but impressive Launch Velocity.
Combat Skills: Deficient but with Potential. Marginal Mechanics and a weak Pass Rush Repertoire at this point, but tremendous Paw Persistence and an excellent WingSpan give'm intriguing Potential.
Intangibles: Mediocre but with exceptional Potential. His Field Vision is awful, but his Motor is excellent.
Run Defense: His Potential here is dubious, I believe, because despite a tremendous Frame that looks great walking onto the Field, his Power is a Liability at The Point of Attack, and his lack of Fluidity and Acceleration, compounded by his sluggish Field Vision, are a Liability in Pursuit. He has some Potential as a BackField Disruptor, though.
Pass Coverage: I wouldn't try it, if I was you. His lack of Fluidity and Field Vision could be disastrous.
Pass Rush: There is intriguing Potential, here, based on his impressive Launch Velocity and the Possibility of his developing his Combat Skills to match his excellent WingSpan. But his lack of Power and Fluidity, compounded by his raw Mechanics, render'm far more'f a Lottery Ticket in this regard that his Statistics suggest, I believe.
I just don't believe that there's much Talent, there, to go along with the Motor.
He looks far more powerful than he actually is on the Field of Battle ~ a classic case of impressive Torso Power but deficient Core Power, combined with so much Height that he's hindered from projecting what Power he does have.
And he's got impressive Launch Velocity, but his Fluidity ~ his capacity to change directions smoothly ~ is very poor.
Add to that his extremely raw Combat Skills, and what I come up with is a guy with some Potential, based on that excellent WingSpan combined with that impressive Launch Velocity, but far less Potential, I believe, than is generally perceived.
I believe, in short, that his Market Value is based far more on his Penn State Pedigree, his explosive Senior Season Statistics, and his impressive Stature than his true Risk/Reward Potential on the BattleField.
I will say, however, that I'll be surprised if he fails to carve out a Role for'mself, based simply on Motor, alone. And while his awful Field Vision dissuade me from considering his FootBall Intelligence very high, I absolutely love his Motor, and thus give'm a fighting Chance of developing the Combat Skills that he's going to need to succeed...or to survive.
But without much Power or Fluidity and with Combat Skills being at present deficient, combined with undeveloped Field Vision, I simply cannot justify placing a very high Price on Nassib's Potential on the Field of Battle.
Grateful Thanks, as always, for the crucial Work done by the folks at Draft BreakDown!!
None of this is even remotely a Complaint, mind you, but rather a Warning!! Caveat Emptor!!