2016 Buccaneers’ Draft Profile: DE Joey Bosa
We continue to profile players that the Buccaneers could draft by looking at Joey Bosa. Could he be the next edge pass rusher in Tampa?
The draft is rapidly approaching. A little over one month from now, all 32 NFL teams will be gathering in Chicago for their annual player selection meeting, deciding on who they believe the stars of tomorrow are. The Buccaneers, along with the rest of the franchises, are busy making their boards, watching tape, and evaluating all of the big names, and some small ones.
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While the teams are doing it, we are going to continue our previews. So far, we have taken a look at Noah Spence, DeForest Buckner, and Emmanuel Ogbah. This morning, we take a look at the young man from Ohio State, who some say is the top edge rusher in the draft. Today’s spotlight is on Joey Bosa.
As usual, we start by taking a look at his stats during his Buckeye days.
Defense & Fumbles
|*2013||Ohio State||Big Ten||FR||DL||11||27||15||42||13.5||7.5||0||0||0||1||1||0|
|*2014||Ohio State||Big Ten||SO||DL||15||39||16||55||21.5||13.5||0||0||0||1||1||4|
|2015||Ohio State||Big Ten||JR||DL||12||35||16||51||16.0||5.0||1||28||28.0||0||4||0||1|
Clearly, Bosa is another player that spent his college days in opposing backfields. 51 tackles for losses over a three-year span is a huge number. His sack numbers went down as a junior, after a breakout season as a sophomore, but that doesn’t take away from the fact that he was in the backfield a lot. 16 TFL’s was a down year for Bosa, just to keep things in perspective.
Now, we will take a look at his Combine measurements and performance:
WEIGHT: 269 pounds
ARM LENGTH: 33 3/8″
Bosa had a mixed performance at the Combine, posting a forty time of 4.86 seconds. He was a top performer, however, in three separate drills, the Broad Jump, the Three Cone Drill, and the Twenty Yard Shuttle. At his Pro Day, he improved his forty time to 4.77 seconds.
Here are his strengths and weaknesses from his draft profile:
"Strengths: Has an NFL-ready frame. Good muscular definition and flexibility to go along with a confident, competitive attitude. Solid upfield burst off the snap. Has booming power in his hands. Uses arm extension and forward lean as his primary weapon. Generates speed-to-power bullrush and plays off of that with a punch and pull technique that pulls tackles off-balance. Focuses pass rush attack on outside shoulder of tackle using forward lean and aggressive hand play. Active hands can completely wipe out a tackle’s weak outside hand allowing him to cave-in the edge. Usually gets hands on defender first. Able to stack and slide along line of scrimmage in pursuit of ball-carrier. Strong core and able to rag doll tight ends who aren’t committed to the fight. Adequate closing burst to the ball. Looks fluid and nimble when dropping into space. Has the talent and traits to be used more aggressively than he was at Ohio State. Grew as a run defender this season. Has forced five fumbles over the last two years. Football is in his blood with a father who was drafted by Dolphins in first round of 1987 draft and an uncle who played at Ohio State in the mid-80s. Motor will never be a problem.Weaknesses: Too contact-oriented in his rush and needs to learn to leverage himself around the edge. Forward lean can cause him to go flying when defenders give him a shove. Tape shows surprising lack of play strength when he’s attacked on his edge. Struggles to fight back when being washed down by down blocks. Will end up on the ground more times than expected during game. Instincts a work in progress. Can be slow to process what he sees and can be frozen by zone-read looks. Not much bang behind his pads as a tackler. Big runners squeeze out additional yards after contact against him. Will vacate his run fit with constant attempts to get over the top of block rather than reading and reacting to both gaps. Not as twitchy and sudden as expected. Feet are a little heavy and it takes just a second to accelerate up to speed after quick direction changes. More attention by offenses brought much fewer sacks. Flagged for offsides 10 times over last two years and 14 penalties total."
As usual, we now move to the video tape:
The first thing that is clear is respect that opposing coaches have for Joey Bosa. The schemes and the planning to neutralize him are clear. He is facing double teams fairly often, and a lot of time the run game is directed away from him. The runs are away from Bosa, or there is clear blocking down that is focused on eliminating him from the play, and that says a lot.
He has an excellent snap reaction, sometimes too good. He has a quick twitch, but sometimes it gets him called for offsides. That is something a quarterback that is adept at the hard count can use against him. He can improve that, though.
Bosa has all the makings of a three-down player. He looked smooth when dropping into coverage, just like he looked smooth coming off of the edge. The forty yard dash is not a clear indication of Bosa’s speed, as he has explosion off of the edge. That quick step gives him the upper hand, and he can toss a tackle out of the way if they aren’t ready to take him on. He also has a strong swim move that often isn’t seen with a young player.
He sometimes, however, doesn’t appear to trust his instincts. If you notice, on the snap, he sometimes stays still for a fraction of a second, almost as if he wants to make sure of where the play is going. He must trust his instincts, or he will get blown out of a play at the NFL level. Bosa also gets taken out of plays, at times, surprisingly easily. He was on the ground more often than I expected in the above footage. He must come off of those run blocks a bit stronger, and a bit easier. The linemen won’t be as easy to beat when he makes the jump to the pros.
Next: Third Round Draft Prospects for the Bucs
But these are minor points. Bosa is the real deal. He is primed to make a difference at the NFL level, and if he falls to number nine, the Bucs have to make the choice to have him walk across the stage and receive a jersey in the color of pewter.