1. DE Gaines Adams - Clemson – 6-foot-4, 265 - 4.64
As the ACC's most ferocious pass rusher, Adams finished his senior season with 62 tackles, 10.5 sacks and 17.5 tackles for loss. When you size him up on film Adams appears to be the scariest hybrid rush end/outside linebacker to enter the draft since Shawne Merriman.
As an athlete Adams has shown he has the ability back pedal, open his hips and play in space, so the transition to playing outside linebacker in a 3-4 scheme would be a rather easy adjustment for him to make. On that same note he's also long and powerful enough to play with his hand on the ground and function as a 4-3 defensive end.
Like most top 10 talents it's difficult to find any glaring holes in Adams' game. Regardless of where he goes, the type of defense he's in, or position he plays, Gaines Adams will be a dominant player.
2. DE Anthony Spencer - Purdue – 6-foot-3, 261 - 4.70
Teams waiting for the next Dwight Freeney to show up have found him in the form of Anthony Spencer. Just like Freeney, Spencer is relentless, powerful, and balanced. I fully expect him to be considered for 2007 defensive rookie of the year.
As a senior Spencer led the nation with 26.5 tackles for loss, 10.5 sacks and five forced fumbles. He also did this against the nation's best collective group of offensive tackles. In 2006 Spencer also tallied 86 total tackles, proving he's more than a sheer pass rush specialist - he's an all-around, hard-nosed football player.
Like Gaines Adams ahead of him, Spencer can translate to both an outside linebacker in a 3-4 and defensive end in a 4-3.
3. DE Jarvis Moss - Florida – 6-foot-6, 255 - 4.70
You won't find Jarvis Moss listed this high on most people's draft boards, but whenever I was combing through my tape of the SEC, Moss stood alone. He didn't just stand alone in the conference, either - he stood alone in the nation.
Every time I watched Moss on the field I couldn't help but compare him to Simeon Rice. Like Rice, Moss has catlike quickness and can zip past a flat-footed lineman in a millisecond. He uses long arms to his advantage in both fighting off would-be blockers and knocking down passes and kicks. When it comes to his movement he's well balanced and fluid. Without question the top 4-3 defensive end in the draft.
4. DE Jamaal Anderson - Arkansas – 6-foot-5, 275 - 4.85
Right behind Jarvis Moss is fellow SEC defensive end Jamaal Anderson. Like Moss, Anderson is a lanky pass rusher with a quick initial burst. He's adept at using his long arms to his advantage and will win a lot of battles from this factor alone.
Anderson also has good leg drive, which means he's continually turning his wheels in order to get to the quarterback. He never gives up pursuit on a play and it's not uncommon to see him chase down opposing ball carriers thirty yards past the line of scrimmage.
As a senior Anderson lead the SEC in sacks with 13.5 (also had 26 hurries) and was second in the nation in tackles for loss (19.5).
5. DE Quentin Moses - Georgia – 6-foot-5, 250 - 4.82
At Georgia, Quentin Moses was a high-energy pass-rushing defensive end that played with his hand on the ground from a 4-3 defense. As an NFL prospect several teams are looking at him as a 3-4 outside linebacker.
Moses has a quick first step that allows him to blow past linemen quickly. Physically he's strikingly similar to Clemson's Gaines Adams and can do many of the same things. Some might knock him for his slow 40 time, but he's so fluid in his movements that he'll typically play faster than the stopwatch.
Moses has seen his draft stock take an unfortunate dip after a less-than-spectacular senior campaign (only four sacks), but I still remember the Quentin Moses that terrorized the SEC a year earlier with 11.5 sacks, 20.5 tackles for losses and 38 hurries. If he pulls himself together and regains the dominant form he possessed in 2005, he'll make several teams sorry they passed on him until the late second round.
6. DE Adam Carriker - Nebraska – 6-foot-6, 295 - 4.90
Adam Carriker is the top 3-4 defensive end prospect in this year's draft. Strong and unmovable at the point of attack, Carriker is the prototype end for this type of defense.
7. DE Ray McDonald - Florida – 6-foot-4, 276 - 4.85
Although McDonald primarily played defensive end in college, 4-3 teams will consider him a defensive tackle and want to give him a look at the three technique. With his speed and experience in rushing the passer, he's an intriguing prospect in this scenario.
8. DE LaMarr Woodley - Michigan – 6-foot-2, 268 - 4.65
A defensive end in college, LaMarr Woodley translates to the NFL as a classic 3-4 outside linebacker. With his speed and athleticism he'll be extremely difficult to stop coming from that far off the edge.
2007 NFL Draft Value Board - Defensive Ends
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