2017 NFL draft rankings: Defensive tackles

Sean M. Haffey

If the best prospect in this year’s draft class somehow winds up not being Myles Garrett, look no further than the defensive tackle spot for option No. 2. Alabama’s Jonathan Allen paces this position group, which also includes another likely Round 1 guy (Malik McDowell), plus a deep roster of proven playmakers. 

 
Rank Player School Measurables
1 Jonathan Allen Alabama 6' 3″, 294 lbs.
2 Montravius Adams ​ Auburn 6' 4″, 309 lbs.
3 Malik McDowell Michigan State 6' 6″, 276 lbs.
4 Caleb Brantley Florida 6' 2″, 314 lbs.
5 Eddie Vanderdoes UCLA 6' 4″, 305 lbs.
6 Chris Wormley Michigan 6' 6″, 302 lbs.
7 Carlos Watkins Clemson 6' 3″, 305 lbs.
8 Vita Vea Washington 6' 4″, 346 lbs.
9 Jarron Jones​ Notre Dame 6' 5 1/2″, 315 lbs.
10 Charles Walker Oklahoma 6' 2″, 304 lbs.

I was a big fan of A’Shawn Robinson heading into last year’s draft and liked his Alabama linemate Jarran Reed quite a bit, as well. Allen’s better—at least at this point in the process. He has silly levels of athleticism for an interior D-linemen and would fit a 3–4 or 4–3 defense as a penetrating, pocket-collapsing presence. McDowell hasn’t had a great season with teams focusing extra attention on him, but he’s still a disruptive, highly versatile prospect. Brantley can take over games from the interior because he's so quick off the ball. Jones (knee/foot) and Vanderdoes (knee) have had to fight through injuries, but they’re both back on the rise. Wormley is listed here despite playing mostly end for Michigan because his size and powerful style fits—he can help set the edge on early downs, then kick inside to pass rush if his next team so chooses. Under-the-radar name: Larry Ogunjobi of Charlotte, who just notched a Senior Bowl invite. He eats up space inside.​

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