2016 NFL Draft: early look at USC’s Su’a Cravens


USC’s Su’a Cravens is a hybrid defensive back and linebacker prospect. He’s separates himself from the other prospects who find themselves in this situation because of his size and ability to support the run. In fact, there isn’t much of a chance that Cravens actually lines up at safety in the NFL.

Cravens features good overall size and bulk which helps him play close to the line of scrimmage. USC asks Cravens to spend most of his time in the box where he sets the edge against the run, rushes the passer and drops into the flat.

His commitment to rolling his hips into the blocker, gaining inside hands and generating a jolt is why he’s so effective setting the edge. Cravens also possess the awareness and hand strength to make plays away from his frame.

This clip shows Cravens setting the edge, delivering a jolt and forcing the running back inside:

He brings some versatility to the table as his burst off the edge gives him upside as a pass rusher. Cravens also has good snap awareness and the tenacity to continue his pursuit. The clip below shows the type of burst he has off the edge:

The issue facing Cravens is that he’ll need time to fully learn what’s asked of an NFL linebacker. His role at USC is so unique that it will take time for him to feel comfortable and play freely. However, it’s hard to ignore a player with his natural ability and athleticism.

There will be plenty of NFL evaluators and coaches drooling over the potential of this versatile defender.

Current Draft Position: 1st Round