2020 NFL Draft Watchlist: Senior Defensive Tackles

Coming off a loaded defensive line class in 2019, the 2020 NFL Draft class will look to make a name for itself this draft season.

By now we’ve all heard of the top two senior defensive tackles prospects in the 2020 NFL Draft, Raekwon Davis (Alabama) and Derrick Brown (Auburn). Now, it’s time to familiarize yourself with a few more senior defensive tackles who will join them as coveted draft prospects.

Neville Gallimore, Oklahoma

Playing in the Big-12 conference, Gallimore will have every opportunity to show he can disrupt opposing teams’ offense. He struggled to get to the quarterback the last season mostly because he’s still developing as a pass-rusher.

Gallimore isn’t the biggest guy — 6-foot-2, 301 pounds — so oftentimes length can be an issue. He lacks the hand timing necessary to clear hands and when his opponent gains control it’s difficult for him to clear the block.

However, when the opposing lineman does gain control, Gallimore is near impossible to move because of the power he generates. Not only did Gallimore crack Bruce Feldman’s 2019 college football Freaks List, he nearly captured the top spot, coming in at number 2.

“… he bench presses 500 pounds and squats 800. He cleans 405. The most impressive number of all is that he clocked a 4.76 in the 40” Feldman wrote.

Rashard Lawrence, LSU

Lawrence may be the most nuanced pass rusher out of the bunch, but is very sound with his hands. He is able to win using multiple pass rush moves: the push-pull, double hand swipe, and even a simple bull-rush.

Lawrence is effective against the run as well; again, his hands play a huge role in his success, showing great placement and timing. He’s explosive out of his stance, allowing him to shoot gaps, but he can also man 2-gaps, with his eyes in the backfield.

Perhaps the biggest issue for Lawrence is his inability to split doubles. In the Georgia game specifically, there were too many plays where he would get washed out of the play by a double team and spent too much time on the ground.

Javon Kinlaw, South Carolina

Kinlaw is an absolute rocket coming out of his stance and is perhaps the most explosive player on the interior. Kinlaw is the definition of a gap-penetrating defensive lineman. He has a great sense for the snap count and does well staying low out of his stance.

Not only is he explosive, but he has a very strong and powerful upper body. These traits (explosiveness, strength, and snap anticipation) combine for a deadly combination, he’s able to gain leverage at the initial point of contact, and when he does it’s lights out. Kinlaw will move you wherever, whenever he pleases.

Kinlaw will attract many NFL teams because of his high motor and his relentlessness when rushing the passer. If Kinlaw can add counter moves to his game, he will have a real shot to be the first defensive tackle taken because of his athletic traits.