Position: Defensive Tackle/Edge
Age: 23 (Draft Day)
Height and Weight: 6-foot-3 and 291 pounds
Brandon Dorlus is a unique prospect in this year's class as he lines up and plays well at nearly every position along the defensive line. He can play with his hand in the dirt on the edge as well as standing up when rushing the passer. Dorlus was only a three-star recruit coming out of Deerfield Beach High School in Florida finding his way to Oregon. He played less than 100 snaps as a freshman in 2019 and didn’t see a large amount of playing time until he was a junior in 2021.
Versatility: Dorlus is one of the more versatile defensive line prospects as he saw over 260 snaps inside in 2023 and over 300 snaps over the tackle or outside the tackle for the Ducks. He has a great blend of strength and athleticism that makes him more than up to the challenge as both an edge rusher and a defensive tackle. He plays some of his best football on the inside with his relentless motor and strength profile he uses to overwhelm interior offensive linemen.
Hand Usage: The hand usage for Dorlus is as good as it gets he has a stack and shed technique to throw offensive linemen to the side like rag dolls. He does a great job of swiping away linemen’s hands to prevent them from getting their hands into his body helping him anchor the middle of the defensive line, especially against the run. Dorlus has heavy and violent hands that allow him to use his unique blend of strength and adequate athleticism to get the job done.
Strength Profile: Dorlus is much better at using power as a rusher and run defender than speed and athleticism with elite-level strength. He isn’t a bad athlete by any means and has plenty of explosion off the line he just isn’t a next-level athlete. His strength profile is great and allows him to anchor the defensive line to prevent quarterbacks from stepping up in the pocket. He also sets the edge well against the run when lined up as a defensive end which will make him impactful at the next level.
Lacks Bend: When lined up as an edge rusher on the outside he lacks the next-level bend to get around the outside of offensive tackles. He can win with a solid explosion off the line of scrimmage but wins more with creativity and strength. He isn’t a freaky-level athlete and has stiff hips when running the arc to get to the quarterback.
Can struggle to maintain gap discipline: From time to time Dorlus can get over-aggressive and doesn’t maintain gap deiscipline creating cutback lanes for running backs. Mixed with his lack of elite-level explosion and speed if he misreads a play he doesn’t always have the tools to react and fix his mistakes.
NFL Comparison: Alex Wright, Cleveland Browns
Dorlus is bigger than second-year pass rusher Alex Wright in Cleveland but their strengths line up. Both play well as an interior rusher and set the edge against the run from the defensive end position. Though Wright is more of a defensive end and Dorlus is better from the interior both can be used to create mismatches for their teams to exploit.
Draft Projection: Day 2 Pick
The defensive tackle class is not the deepest we have seen it but Dorlus' ability to play anywhere on the defensive line will make him enticing to NFL teams. He will need to work on his pad level that struggles at times but his strength profile will translate for him immediately as a rookie. As he continues to develop as a pass rusher he could turn into a difference-maker somewhere down the road at the next level.