James Pearce Jr.: The Next Elite EDGE Prospect

Pearce Jr is the early favorite to be the first defensive player drafted in the 2025 NFL Draft
Connecticut v Tennessee
Connecticut v Tennessee / Donald Page/GettyImages

James Pearce Jr. is the best EDGE prospect in almost a decade. In 2023, he was selected to the All-SEC first-team for a reason. He is as explosive as anyone in college football.

When we mention Myles Garrett, we’re talking about one of the most dominant defensive players to enter the NFL in recent years. Garrett, drafted first overall by the Cleveland Browns in 2017, possesses a rare combination of size, speed, and ridiculous strength. He is widely considered the best defensive player in the league.

Now, James Pearce Jr. is drawing comparisons to Garrett. Here’s why:

Like Garrett, Pearce Jr. has the physical tools that NFL teams covet. Standing at 6’5" and possessing impressive length, he can disrupt passing lanes and create havoc for opposing quarterbacks. Pearce Jr. combines explosiveness off the line with agility, making him a nightmare for offensive tackles. His burst allows him to close in on quarterbacks quickly, reminiscent of Garrett’s style of play.

Just as Garrett can line up in various positions along the defensive line, Pearce Jr. has shown impressive versatility. Whether it’s rushing from the edge or moving inside, he can rush from anywhere.

Pearce Jr. is eligible for the 2025 NFL Draft, and early mock drafts have him projected as a potential No. 1 overall pick. His disruptive play, college accolades, and the need for impact edge rushers in the modern NFL have fueled the hype around him.

While it’s extremely early in the evaluation process, James Pearce Jr. has the potential to be a game-changing EDGE prospect. If he continues to develop and impress scouts, he could indeed follow in Myles Garrett’s footsteps as a top pick in the draft. Keep an eye on this rising star as we approach the 2025 draft.