2012 NFL Draft Rankings: Top Edge-Rushers (DE/OLB)
- The round listed after each prospect’s name is the grade I have provided him, NOT where I think he will get selected. I view players with two rounds listed as on the border of each.
- Players with the *** designation are higher than consensus rankings, while those with ^^^ after their names are lower than the consensus.
1. Melvin Ingram, DE/OLB, South Carolina (First Round)
2. Quinton Coples, DE, North Carolina (First Round)
3. Vinny Curry, DE/OLB, Marshall (First Round) ***
4. Whitney Mercilus, DE/OLB, Illinois (First Round)
5. Nick Perry, DE/OLB, U.S.C. (Second Round)
6. Courtney Upshaw, DE/OLB, Alabama (Second Round) ^^^
7. Shea McClellin, DE/OLB, Boise State (Second Round) ***
8. Cam Johnson, DE, Virginia (Second Round)
9. Malik Jackson, DE, Tennessee (Second/Third Round) ***
10. Chandler Jones, DE/OLB, Syracuse (Second/Third Round)
11. Jonathan Massaquoi, DE/OLB, Troy (Third Round) ***
12. Andre Branch, DE/OLB, Clemson (Third Round) ^^^
13. Kyle Wilber, OLB, Wake Forest (Third Round) ***
14. Bruce Irvin, OLB, West Virginia (Third Round)
15. Ronnell Lewis, OLB, Oklahoma (Third Round/Fourth) ^^^
16. Jared Crick, DE, Nebraska (Fourth Round) ^^^
17. Tyrone Crawford, DE, Boise State (Fourth Round)
18. Brandon Lindsey, DE/OLB, Pitt (Fourth Round)
19. Oliver Vernon, DE/OLB, Miami (Fifth Round)
20. Donte Paige-Moss, DE/OLB, UNC (Fifth Round)
21. Jack Bequette, DE, Arkansas (Fifth Round) ^^^
22. Jacquies Smith, DE/OLB, Missouri (Fifth Round)
23. Julian Miller, DE, West Virginia (Fifth/Sixth Round)
A few thoughts. . .
- I have Melvin Ingram rated ahead of Quinton Coples because I think the former is a better pure pass-rusher. Coples might wind up as a 3-4 defensive end, in which case his potential value to a team could drop just a bit.
- I love Vinny Curry’s burst, and I think he’s a first-round talent all the way. I’d love to see Dallas grab him in the second.
- I’ve explained here why I don’t like Courtney Upshaw.
- Shea McClellin, Malik Jackson and Jonathan Massaquoi all offer great value in their projected mid-round draft spots. McClellin’s motor is unreal, and Jackson has better pass-rushing skills than Upshaw, in my view.
- Andre Branch and Jared Crick are so low on my list because I simply think there are better athletes out there. Both players are potentially limited in what they can do.