Rated by many as the best DE in this years’ draft, Da’Quan Bowers led the NCAA with 15.5 sacks and won the Nagurski award as the top defensive player in college football. In addition to his 15.5 sacks, he also had the second most tackle for loss with 26, an all-time Clemson record for defensive lineman. Many of the records Bowers broke at Clemson where that of former NFL first round selection, Gaines Adams, Bowers’ former mentor and close friend.
Bowers weighed-in at the combine 6’3 3/8 and 280 lbs and completed 22 repetitions in the bench press. Bowers did not compete in the running drills due to a tear in his meniscus.
When you evaluate his performance at Clemson, you see an athlete that plays a lot stronger than his 22 repetitions would suggest. He has an aggressive bullrush off the edge that violently stuns the offensive tackle and gets him off balance. Although he doesn’t have elite quickness on the snap, he will be able to work on his timing and explosion off the ball with his position coach in the NFL.
Bowers is also very sought against the run, which is rare for an elite pass rusher. He stays strong as the line of scrimmage and sheds block without giving any ground at the point of attack. Bowers plays with great leverage and holds up surprisingly well against the double team. This makes him a top candidate to play End in a 4-3 scheme that will give versatility in both the run and pass rush game. Because of that, I have him ranked as my top Defensive End in this years draft.