Joey Bosa is the most intriguing defensive player in the 2016 NFL Draft. Bosa has a chance to be one of the most feared pass rushers in football. He certainly struck fear into his opponents at the college level. In three seasons as a Ohio State Buckeye, Bosa recorded 26.5 sacks and 51 tackles for a loss. There is no questioning his productiveness on the field.
Bosa’s best season at Ohio State was in 2014, the year the Buckeyes won the inaugural College Football Playoff trophy. In the Sophomore campaign, Bosa took down the quarterback 13.5 times. He had four forced fumbles and 21.5 tackles in the backfield in that season. That kind of production is quite impressive and it opens many eyes in the NFL.
Bosa developed into more than just a pass rusher in his time as a student-athlete. He is a versatile player who can play defensive end or outside linebacker in the 3-4 defense. I wouldn’t be shocked if he would play middle linebacker exceptionally; he has a Clay Matthews kind of versatility.
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- Bosa’s number one trait to me is how he uses his hands in pursuit of the football. Bosa engages offensive linemen without getting tied up. With a series of pushes, pulls and a nice rip move Bosa uses his long arms to create separation.
- Bosa runs low to the ground, as if he is always in attack mode, great body angles lead to winning the leverage battle at the line of scrimmage.
- Bosa has an explosive first step off the line of scrimmage with no wind up or wasted movement. He is an efficient machine.
- Bosa has the physical tool set to dominate in the NFL. Bosa is 6’6″ 275 pounds. He has a very comparable build to J.J. Watt of the Houston Texans. Bosa could make a Watt-like impact on the team that drafts him.
- Bosa is a strong tackler and is more disciplined against the run than he was in his Freshman year.
- Bosa is sometimes over aggressive, which can be a strength and a weakness. He trusts his instincts for good reason, though it can get him out of position.
- In the NFL will he be able to do all the things a 3-4 outside linebacker needs to do? Can he cover tight ends and play in space for example?
- Stats went down a little bit in his Junior year. He had 5 sacks and 16 tackles for a loss in 2015 (which is still very good). The factors of his stats going down are worth investigating but they aren’t cause for much concern.
Reasons He Is A Legitimate Option For The Ravens:
The Baltimore Ravens have the sixth overall draft pick. Terrell Suggs is coming off his second major injury. Suggs and Dumervil aren’t getting any younger. Bosa would be an awful nice toy for defensive coordinator, Dean Pees to play with. Bosa is a top-10 talent so it would be hard to blame the Ravens for the pick.
The Ravens have more pressing needs than at pass rusher, especially if Za’Darius Smith continues to develop. That being said, you can never have enough pass rushers in a pass happy NFL. This would be a high value pick for the Ravens. Bosa may be off the board before the Ravens get to pick because he is so highly coveted. The passing game dominates the top 5 picks, which is often reserved for quarterbacks, offensive tackles to protect the quarterbacks and pass rushers to beat quarterbacks.