Scouting the 2020 NFL Draft: DT Ross Blacklock, TCU

Ross Blacklock, TCU (Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images)
Ross Blacklock, TCU (Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images) /
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Ross Blacklock, TCU
Ross Blacklock, TCU (Photo by David Purdy/Getty Images) /

TCU defensive tackle Ross Blacklock might be a raw prospect entering the 2020 NFL Draft, but his physical traits could land him a Day 1 selection.

Defensive tackle Ross Blacklock decided to forgo his senior season at TCU electing to enter into the 2020 NFL Draft. A redshirt junior, he will leave that year of eligibility to pursue his dreams of playing in the NFL despite the NFL’s Advisory Committee telling him he should return to the Horned Frogs in 2020, according to Fort Worth Star-Telegram. If the committee feels that a player is not a lock to be selected in the first or second round, they get a “return to school” grade.

A former four-star recruit, Blacklock chose TCU over other offers that included Alabama and Texas A&M. Following his redshirt season during his freshman year, Blacklock was named 2017 Freshman All-American by the FWAA. His first season consisted of 27 tackles (6.5 for a loss), and two sacks in his 14 starts. Joining Oklahoma linebacker Kenneth Murray, Blacklock was named co-Defensive Freshman of the Year in 2017.

Unfortunately, Blacklock was unable to participate in the 2018 season due to an Achilles injury in training camp. When he returned for the 2019 season, the 6-4, 305-pound defensive tackle started all 12 games earning First Team All Big 12. Despite the additional attention given to him by opposing offenses, he would put up 40 tackles (nine tackles for a loss) and 3.5 sacks.

Most media analysts seem to disagree with the NFL’s Advisory Committee, however, as Blacklock has been mocked in the first or second round of most recent mock drafts. Many believe that the committee’s grades can be extremely conservative. Given his rare athletic abilities and power, the former Horned Frog has the potential to put the league on notice throughout the draft process. Blacklock received an invite to the 2020 NFL Combine, where he will arrive next Tuesday with the rest of the defensive linemen. Depending on his performance at the combine, we could begin to hear his name more frequently discussed leading into April.