Sports Info Solutions (SIS) brings you the second annual edition of The SIS Football Rookie Handbook, with scouting reports and statistical breakdowns on over 280 college football players who are likely to be drafted or signed as rookie free agents in 2020 (a glossary for the below stats can be found here). New features for this year include unique and informative NFL team pages, research deep-dives by the SIS R&D team, and—for the first time ever—the NCAA version of their flagship football statistic, Total Points.
Continuing our position-by-position preview of this year’s draft class, we shift our focus to edge rushers. As a scouting staff, we use common terminology to grade every trait that we evaluate. We use a 1-9 scale with a 1 representing a “Reject” grade and a 9 meaning a “Rare” grade for whatever trait we are evaluating. We spend a lot of time in our internal Scout School making sure that our scales are calibrated with one another, and this common scale and set of language is a key aspect to ensuring that our evaluations are consistent (that…and cross-checks).
Additionally, for each position in the book, there are positional grading scales. As opposed to grading traits, these scales apply to stacking the final grades for each prospect. The final edge rusher scale is as follows:
|9.0 – 7.0||High-end 3 down starter. Pro Bowl level.|
|6.9 – 6.7||Strong starter who plays on all 3 downs.|
|6.6 – 6.5||Lower-end starter. 2 down player or plus pass rusher.|
|6.2||Versatile backup with positional flexibility.|
|6.1 – 6.0||Developmental. Top traits but needs time.|
|5.9||Top backup. 3rd LB. Quality special teamer.|
|5.8||Average backup. 4th LB. Quality special teamer.|
Chase Young: Edge Rank 1 of 23 | Final Grade: 7.3
Report by Matt Manocherian
Young is an elite edge prospect who dominated at Ohio State and shows upside to quickly ascend to a perennial double-digit sack pass rusher.
Young is a defensive end who usually lines up as a 5-technique to the weak side of the formation in Ohio State’s four-man front. He generally rushes out of a 3-point stance, but he also plays out of a 4- or 2-point stance at times. He is best suited as an edge, but he shows the ability to rush out of a 4i and split gaps on the interior. He started 23 of 38 games. He has a prototypical frame for an edge with ample length. His athletic ability, balance, and smoothness of movement for his size are off the charts. He shows good effort overall but slows down to conserve his energy once he has determined that he is out of the play.
Young’s first step explosion is excellent, and his pass rush ability is predicated on it as well as his elite athleticism for his size and strength. He wastes little motion attacking vertically off the snap, and he quickly overwhelms in one-on-one matchups with his combination of athleticism and hand use. He shows very good speed to the outside and counters it with his most effective move, a jab step to the outside followed by a knife and swim to the inside. He shows top ability to clear out the blocker’s hands and maintain his balance, and he consistently plays with good pad level and leverage. He shows the hand quickness of an elite boxer, winning battles for hand placement with ease. He is patient to key and diagnose, but once he reads pass he shows the ability to accelerate rapidly around the corner. He shows natural ankle bend and usually has his shins parallel to the ground when engaged. He rushes with a suddenness that translates when he reduces down over the guard. He also shows ample athleticism to spot drop, but he is inexperienced in this regard and processes much more quickly when attacking the LOS.
In the run game, Young shows very good discipline to set an edge and keep outside contain, including on zone reads where he is responsible for the QB. He uses his combination of athleticism, length, and strength to maintain outside leverage and force plays back to the inside, and he is the unusual sort of player who can force the quarterback to give the read-option and still make a play coming down the LOS from the backside. He is not somebody who consistently moves OLs back in the run game and will occasionally give some ground, but it is very difficult to keep Young engaged or beat him to the corner because of his quickness, which makes him an asset in run defense.
Young shows superlative athletic traits—including excellent length, explosion, balance, and hand quickness—that compare to recent elite edge prospects Myles Garrett and Jadeveon Clowney. While it’s hard to imagine anybody having a better rookie season than Nick Bosa, Young compares favorably to his former college teammate in terms of his upside as a pass rusher.
|Explosive athleticism||Effort runs hot and cold at times|
|Hand quickness||Raw on spot drops|
|Pass rush impact||Can give ground in the run game|
|Pass Rush Ability||8|
|1st Step Explosion||8|
|POA / Set Edge||7|
|Pass Rush Repertoire||7|
|Year||Broken Tackles||BT%||Tackle Share||ATD+||Pressure Share||Holds Drawn||EPA on TFL||EPA on Sacks|
|Pass Rush||When Run At||Total Points|
|Year||Rush%||3-Point Stance%||Pressure%||Sack%||Bounce%||Pos%||EPA/A||Run Def||Pass Rush||Total|