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PFF scouting report: Omarius Bryant, Edge, Western Kentucky

BOWLING GREEN, KY - DECEMBER 5: Omarius Bryant #9 of the WKU Hilltoppers jogs off the field during a game against the Southern Miss Golden Eagle at Houchens-Smith Stadium on December 5, 2015 in Bowling Green, Kentucky. The Hilltoppers defeated the Golden Eagles 45-28. (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)

Name: Omarius Bryant

School: Western Kentucky

Position fit: 3- or 5- technique

Stats to know: Only Alabama’s Jonathan Allen managed more than Bryant’s 63 combined pressures among 3-4 DEs.

What he does best:

  • Possesses the upper-body strength to rock blockers on initial contact.
  • Regularly stands up offensive linemen at the point of attack.
  • Rarely overpowered, consistently holds his ground at the line of scrimmage.
  • Capable of disrupting run plays despite facing multiple blockers.
  • Plays with good leverage, sinks his hips effectively to maintain a low center of gravity.
  • Ruthless bull-rusher, deposits offensive linemen on their quarterback regularly.
  • Capable of mauling centers with power moves from 0 technique in the nickel.
  • Understands when to “get skinny” to collapse the pocket against multiple blockers.
  • Uses active hands to disengage, even when initially blocked.
  • High-effort player, chases plays hard.

Biggest concern:

  • Struggles to adjust and fend off cut blocks because of his top-heavy momentum.
  • Can be washed upfield when attempting to penetrate, widening running lanes.
  • Occasionally over pursues plays due to his aggression into the backfield.
  • Indifferent first step, flashes burst but only intermittently.
  • Lacks the range to consistently finish plays behind the line of scrimmage.
  • Tackling is a problem generally, missed seven of 59 attempts over last two years.
  • Not especially athletic, struggles to change direction on the move.
  • Rarely beat pass protectors with quickness, limited power rusher.

Player comparison: Ray McDonald, retired

McDonald was a solid base end for the 49ers for the better part of a decade. Bryant has similar potential entering the NFL. He is unlikely to produce splash plays on a regular basis, and perhaps lacks the upside of others in this class, but represents a dependable prospect capable of contributing immediately in a defensive line rotation.

Bottom line: Athleticism always catches the eye of NFL evaluators, but teams on the third day of the draft should predominantly be concerned with finding role players. Bryant is unlikely to provide the pass-rush production required of a nickel interior defender, but he can impact both facets of the game consistently from the base package. Bryant appeals because of the balanced nature of his skillset. Although splash plays appear infrequently, Bryant is a regular disruptor, capable fulfilling an important niche in the pros.

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