July 24, 2007

Category rankings: Defensive tackles


The Rivals.com recruiting experts have broken down countless hours of film and racked up plenty of frequent flyer miles to see the top prospects compete at events across the country to come up with the most extensive and accurate prospect rankings and evaluations you will find. In the process of evaluating overall talent, several prospects gained notice for their mastery of specific skills.

We rank the top five defensive tackle prospects in five categories. Some prospects excel in certain categories, then there are freaks like Marcus Forston, who is listed among the top five in each category.

DT rankings: Quickest | Strongest | Best athlete | Best run stuffer | Best pass rusher

Quickest
Jeremy Crabtree's take: Tyson moves really well for a big guy. Koehler is one of the stronger linemen around, but what's so impressive about him is his quickness. He's a tough package to stop.

Mike Farrell's take: Tyson is head and shoulders above everyone else in this class when it comes to quickness off the football and in the defensive backfield. He's a rare prospect with his ability to run things down from the inside.

JC Shurburtt's take: Tyson and Forston's prowess in this category set them apart. Hardy may very well end up being quicker than Koehler long-term, but his conditioning causes him to rate below Koehler at this point.

  • Vote: Who is the quickest?
  • 1. DeAngelo Tyson, 6-2, 276, Statesboro (Ga.) Tyson highlights
    2. Marcus Forston, 6-2, 286, Miami (Fla.) Northwestern Forston highlights
    3. Solomon Koehler, 6-6, 290, Kaneohe (Hawaii) Castle Koehler at USC camp
    4. Templeton Hardy, 6-4, 295, Sardis (Miss.) North Panola Hardy highlights
    5. Reggie Ellis, 6-2, 278, Washington (D.C.) Dunbar Ellis highlights
    Strongest
    Crabtree's take: Forston is a monster, but I probably would have put Martin as the No. 1 guy. Regardless, both are huge in the weight room and have great upper body and lower body strength that make it really hard to get them out of the way on running plays. Rod Davis also uses his strength quite well to make big plays.

    Farrell's take: Marcus Forston's bull rush is similar to that of Marvin Austin's last year. Strength on the football field is different than in the weight room but Forston has both. He plays with great leverage and proves that the low man wins.

    Shurburtt's take: This group can overpower most offensive linemen they face. At the high school level, you can't block these guys one on one.

  • Vote: Who is the strongest?
  • 1. Marcus Forston, 6-2, 286, Miami (Fla.) Northwestern Forston highlights
    2. Mike Martin, 6-2, 278, Novi (Mich.) Central Catholic Martin highlights
    3. Brandon Thompson, 6-2, 291, Thomasville (Ga.) Thompson highlights
    4. Jarvis Humphrey, 6-2, 290, Cedar Hill (Texas) Humphrey highlights
    5. Rod Davis, 6-2, 300, Aldine (Texas) Eisenhower Davis highlights
    Best Athlete
    Crabtree's take: Guy, Goebel and Armstead are freakish athletes. Goebel is a stud in wrestling and Armstead is also a star in AAU basketball. Tyson, Forston are also so athletic and move around so well for big guys.

    Farrell's take: Tyson is excellent at keeping his balance and his feet in traffic and for a big man is so athletic. Lawrence Guy has high athletic upside and is one to watch as well.

    Shurburtt's take: There is no question that the big two (Tyson and Forston) are the best athletes out of the bunch. Guy is an intriguing prospect because of his athleticism.

  • Vote: Who is the best athlete?
  • 1. DeAngelo Tyson, 6-2, 276, Statesboro (Ga.) Tyson highlights
    2. Marcus Forston, 6-2, 286, Miami (Fla.) Northwestern Forston highlights
    3. Lawrence Guy, 6-6, 265, Las Vegas (Nev.) Western Guy highlights
    4. Garrett Goebel, 6-5, 264, Lombard (Ill.) Montini Goebel highlights
    5. Armond Armstead, 6-4, 287, Elk Grove (Calif.) Pleasant Grove Armstead highlights
    Best Run Stuffer
    Crabtree's take: Humphrey is great in this category. He gets off so quickly if you blink, you'll miss him. Thompson, Hunter, Forston and Martin are also very strong candidates in this category.

    Farrell's take: Everybody liked someone else for this category showing how deep it is at DT when it comes to run stuffers. Jarvis Humphrey made everyone's list for good reason and I really like Omar Hunter who should be a very good nose for Notre Dame.

    Shurburtt's take: These are not the guys that clog up the middle of a defense, but guys that can knife in and make a big play on a running back. One interesting fact is that there are two Georgians on this list and neither is DeAngelo Tyson.

  • Vote: Who is the best run stuffer?
  • 1. Jarvis Humphrey, 6-2, 290, Cedar Hill (Texas) Humphrey highlights
    2. Brandon Thompson, 6-2, 291, Thomasville (Ga.) Thompson highlights
    3. Omar Hunter, 6-1, 295, Buford (Ga.) Hunter highlights
    4. Marcus Forston, 6-2, 286, Miami (Fla.) Northwestern Forston highlights
    5. Mike Martin, 6-2, 278, Novi (Mich.) Central Catholic Martin highlights
    Best Pass Rusher
    Crabtree's take: Proving that Forston is one of the most complete defenders in the nation, he tops the category in this area, too. Cwynar is also a big-time threat to get at the quarterback. I also like Goebel because he's able to use his leverage so well.

    Farrell's take: Forston, Forston and Forston. His array of pass rushing moves and ability to get off the ball and into the blocker quickly makes him like a defensive end from the tackle position.

    Shurburtt's take: Forston uses a variety of moves to get to the quarterback and has mastered all of them. This makes him especially impossible for a high school offensive lineman to block and means he should see the field early, early in college.

  • Vote: Who is the best pass rusher?
  • 1. Marcus Forston, 6-2, 286, Miami (Fla.) Northwestern Forston highlights
    2. Sean Cwynar, 6-4, 284, Woodstock (Ill.) Marian Central Catholic Cwynar highlights
    3. DeAngelo Tyson, 6-2, 276, Statesboro (Ga.) Tyson highlights
    4. Garrett Goebel, 6-5, 264, Lombard (Ill.) Montini Goebel highlights
    5. Stacey McGee, 6-5, 255, Muskogee (Okla.) McGee highlights




     

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