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NFL Combine open thread: On-field workouts for DL, LB

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It’s day three of NFL Combine workouts, this time featuring defensive linemen, edge rushers, and linebackers. Edge rusher is the most apparent area of need for the Buffalo Bills this year, but another defensive tackle or linebacker wouldn’t hurt either. Let’s jump down to the leading stories for the day’s events...


The stars (almost) align

Today we will see three of (arguably) the top five prospects in this draft class work out: Chase Young (Ohio State), Derrick Brown (Auburn), and Isaiah Simmons (Clemson). Seeing Brown’s impressive leaps or Simmons flying down the track will be a sight to behold. Unfortunately, Young already decided to sit out the on-field drills, so we won’t know how he compared with the Bosa brothers or Myles Garrett.

Finding athletic pass rushers

Outside of maybe cornerback, no position depends as much on raw athleticism as edge rusher. Technique can turn a good defender into a great one, but it’s a lot easier to win one-on-one when you’re faster and stronger than the guy across from you.

A.J. Epenesa (Iowa), K’Lavon Chaisson (LSU), and Yetur Gross-Matos (Penn State) are three players vying for first-round status. Other contenders include Terrell Lewis (Georgia Tech), who was only held back by injuries in his college career, and a pair of players from Notre Dame in Julian Okwara and Khalid Kareem.

Those defensive line drills

I don’t know, man, something just resonates with me when I watch a 6’4” 315-lb giant wallop a guy holding pads with all his might. Or turning the corner on a dime and chasing to the sideline in a simulated pass-rush drill. It’s probably my favorite part of the Combine experience, and I’m looking forward to when Ross Blacklock (TCU), Justin Madubuike (Texas A&M), Neville Gallimore (Oklahoma), and others get to attack it.


The workouts begin at 4:00 pm EST, and are televised exclusively on the NFL Network. They can also be viewed through the NFL and NFL Network apps and through NFL.com, but you may need to sign into your TV provider’s account to watch.

For anyone tuned into the workouts, consider this your open thread to discuss the events or NFL Draft prospects as a whole. Fire away!