We're passionate about the NFL Draft
By Dwayne Wilton
During the 2015 NFL Combine, the biggest buzz was created by Clemson’s Vic Beasley. The former running back turned defensive end blew up the measureables and the on-field workouts. Going into the Combine there were two questions about Beasley. The first was about his size. Beasley played last season in the 225 – 235 pound range. That’s very light for a defensive end in the NFL. He answered that by showing up at 246 pounds. He then further impressed scouts by showing that the extra weight didn’t slow him down at all. Beasley ran a 4.53 40 yard dash which was the fastest defensive lineman at the Combine. He also had a 41” vertical jump and a 10’10” broad jump which was tops among the defensive linemen.
The second question about Beasley was concerning his strength and ability to convert speed to power. He put that theory to rest by bench pressing 35 reps which was also the best among the defensive linemen.
It’s common knowledge that Beasley had perhaps the quickest first step of anyone in the draft. He has an explosion off the edge that I haven’t seen since DeMarcus Ware when he first came into the league. The concern was that his weight might be too low to be an every down player. The added weight and the fluid moves he showed in the on-field drills showed that he has the speed and athleticism to convert to linebacker. NFL teams that run a 3-4 scheme have to be salivating at this guy. As a 3-4 outside linebacker, Beasley could be turned loose to rush the passer and use his considerable speed and athleticism.
The last two drafts have been rather light on pass rushers. This year is a really good year for guys that can rush the passer from the edge. There are several very good edge rushers that could be drafted in the first round this year. Most draft analysts have Beasley listed behind edge rushers like Florida’s Dante Fowler, Missouri’s Shane Ray and Nebraska’s Randy Gregory, but I really believe Beasley could be the best of the bunch. He is a tenacious pass rusher, with good flexibility in his hips and ankles and good body lean that allows him to get under the blocker. Beasley also has quick hands that he uses really well to keep blockers off of him and he has outstanding closing burst. The biggest knock on him has been his play against the run, but he is working on that and I believe the extra weight could help him take on blockers. I also think that he will get even better with NFL coaching. Beasley moved around in the Tigers defense, allowing him to exploit matchup weaknesses. I believe he could be used the same way in the NFL and could be a very disruptive player that teams will have to know where he is on every play.
From what I’ve seen in mock drafts, Beasley should be a top 15 pick, but if I’m a team in the top 10 and I needed an edge rusher, I would be looking really closely at Vic Beasley. I believe he has the talent to be a Pro Bowl player for many years to come. I’ve heard comparisons to Von Miller and Bruce Irvin. If Beasley has that type of career, he would be a great value pick.