NFL Draft News & Analysis

2024 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Florida State DI Braden Fiske

2RWD67C CHESTNUT HILL, MA - SEPTEMBER 16: Florida State Seminoles defensive lineman Braden Fiske (55) during a game between the Boston College Eagles and the Florida State Seminoles on September 16, 2023, at Alumni Stadium in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts. (Photo by Fred Kfoury III/Icon Sportswire) (Icon Sportswire via AP Images)

The 2024 NFL Draft is fast approaching. The PFF big board is live, mock draft season is in full swing and the 2024 NFL Scouting Combine has wrapped up.

This year’s defensive line class features a wide variety of skill sets and many potential impact players. UCLA’s Laiatu Latu and Alabama’s Dallas Turner headline the edge defender group, while Texas’ Byron Murphy II and Illinois’ Jer’Zhan Newton provide high-end talent along the interior.

Let's look at Florida State‘s Braden Fiske, whose draft stock soared after he was named Practice Player of the Week at the 2024 Senior Bowl.


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SCOUTING SUMMARY

Fiske played five seasons at Western Michigan, including three as a full-time starter, before transferring to Florida State in 2023. While the Power Five level presented a new challenge, he grew more comfortable over time.

Fiske wins with a quick first step and fast hands, allowing him to be an effective one-gap penetrator and making him tough to reach block. His shorter arms limit the depth of his pass-rush tool bag despite his good understanding of moves. His club-arm over/swim is potent.

His weight limits his strength in run defense, but he holds up well pound-for-pound and possesses good eyes and anticipation for where the ball is going.

Click here to see Braden Fiske's 2024 NFL Draft profile!

WINS ABOVE AVERAGE

WAA represents the number of wins a player is worth over an average college football player and is a metric evaluators can utilize to assess performance.

It combines how well a player performed in each facet of play (using PFF grades) and how valuable each facet is to winning football games. The result is a first-of-its-kind metric that allows for cross-positional valuation and predicts future value at the player and team levels.

Fiske’s Wins Above Average (WAA) since 2018.

HOW FISKE RANKS IN THE STABLE METRICS

PFF pass-rush grade is one of the most stable measures of play, as it isolates a pass-rusher’s ability to win, how quickly he wins and how well he finishes plays.

The quicker the rusher defeats the blocker, the higher his grade will be. And given the hundreds of one-on-one interactions over a given season, this grade is very stable from year to year.

PFF pass-rush grade is strong on its own, but we can also use it to gauge performance in “must pass” situations.

Pressure percentage and win percentage are also strong measures of play and are far better than just using sack totals to evaluate a pass-rusher’s performance.

PFF run-defense grade is also very stable from year to year, while run-stop percentage is a good measure of playmaking in the run game.

Braden Fiske’s percentile ranks in the most stable defensive stats since 2018.

Fiske’s an intriguing prospect. His age and late breakout are concerning, but the production speaks for itself. His final year at Western Michigan (86.6 PFF grade) and his lone year at Florida State (73.9) produced solid grades across the board.

Over that time, he put up a respectable 9.8% pass-rush win rate and an 8.4% run-stop rate. Fiske has a relentless motor that led to 14 sacks over the last two years.

BOTTOM LINE FROM PFF's 2024 NFL DRAFT GUIDE

Fiske's measurements are not ideal, but he has an NFL-level football IQ and pass-rush quickness to be a potential impact player as a 4-3 defensive tackle, even with some run-defense deficiencies.

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