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Buffalo Bills 2021 NFL Draft film review: DE Carlos Basham Jr.

A look at the Bills’ second-round selection

In the first round of the 2021 NFL Draft, the Buffalo Bills decided to shore up their pass rush by selecting a defensive end with a cool nickname. In the second round they...did the exact same thing. We’ve already checked in on Groot, so let’s take a peek at the college film for Carlos “Boogie” Basham Jr.


Play 1

This play sets a nice ceiling for Carlos Basham Jr. The hop back to disengage from the block is well timed and shows off some agility. Basham is patient setting the edge and doesn’t allow the quarterback to get outside. Once he knows he has the right angle he accelerates for the sack.

Play 2

Now even people like me who don’t know much about college football understand Clemson isn’t a pushover. So it’s not necessarily surprising that Basham was on the wrong end of quite a few exchanges in this game, being pushed around a bit at the point of attack. However, his competition isn’t exactly going to get any easier. Boogie didn’t display dominant push against other opponents I took a look at either.

Play 3

Basham twists to pull that left shoulder in perfectly to avoid contact. A quick step at the same time gets him into the play for the tackle. Boogie seemed to be at his best with these kinds of subtle moves and skating around his opponents.

Play 4

This is a great snapshot of a couple points above. The change of direction and use of his hands on the first block is excellent. He sells the outside rush and is back inside before his man can react. The second block is more of a collision and Boogie does not win that battle.

Play 5

Carlos Basham Jr. shows off a good array of moves. Spins, hand-fighting techniques and, of course, the swim. That last is his favorite from what I can tell, as it was consistently featured. Overall, he has work to do to master most of these skills, but he’s performing a few at a higher level than some NFL veterans.

Play 6

For a lineman he showed off good endurance, sprinting on the regular. If there’s any chance whatsoever that he can get to the ball he is full tilt toward that objective. He starts off spying the backfield on this play, recognizes the scramble to the opposite side of the field, and is still the one to end the play.

Play 7

Why another swim? Because they’re fun. Also, you might notice that he did it the first time with his right arm, and this time with his left. He also was more compact in his movement up above, whereas this one is more of a windmill. The difference between knowing a technique and mastering it is the ability to create variations to throw off an opponent. It’s very encouraging to see Boogie showing off some significant changes to his swim move already.


Summary

Let’s start off with the negatives. Carlos Basham Jr. could stand to work on his power moves and leverage to avoid being pushed out of plays. The lack of push overall is a concern in how he’ll translate to the NFL when it comes to straight up collapsing pockets. There were also a fair number of examples of him being blown out of a lane in run support.

For positives, he showed up as agile with a good starting toolkit of finesse techniques. He uses his hands effectively and was pretty good at recognizing changing plays. One thing I only hinted at above that will translate to Buffalo is his patience. The Bills’ defense often asks defensive ends to hang back and contain the edge. Basham consistently did this well, even shadowing running backs to the sideline on occasion.