2017 NFL Draft: Washington Elijah Qualls Scouting Report
Washington’s Elijah Qualls is a nose tackle prospect who is effective because of his size.
Elijah Qualls is a massive defensive line prospect that is mainly asked to occupy space. He’s a true nose-tackle who is better at occupying blockers and holding at the point of attack than actually registering tackles.
Qualls’ size is his best attribute which makes it tough for blockers to move him off the line of scrimmage. He is a physical defender who will fight in the trenches and work to the whistle. His style of play likely means that he’s a 2-down player.
This is a player who brings little to nothing as a pass rusher. He doesn’t play with enough leverage to push the pocket and lacks the initial burst to shoot the gap. Qualls just isn’t someone who’s going to do much more than occupy space.
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His ability to stuff the run is limited by the fact he struggles working off blocks and doesn’t make plays away from his frame. Qualls can hold his ground, but doesn’t disengage quickly enough to register a tackle.
The lack of a pass rush and struggles making a play on the ball carrier really limits Qualls’ upside. He’ll get plenty of looks by evaluators based on his size and solid overall athleticism based on that size. However, this is a prospect who needs time to develop and get stronger.
Qualls will need to show he can do more than eat up space in order to move up draft boards. We’ve seen similar players like DJ Reader fall in the draft because of that lack of versatility.
Current Draft Status: Early 5th Round