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2018 NFL Draft Preview: DE Bradley Chubb

Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

Bradley Chubb is arguably the best defensive player in this draft. Which team will get the luxury of drafting him?

The Sports Quotient’s annual Draft Preview series returns! Over the course of the eight weeks leading up to the 2018 NFL Draft, we will take a look at the top NFL prospects at each position. This week, we dive into the defensive line. Today, we look at Bradley Chubb from NC State University.

College Career

Chubb was a dominant linebacker/defensive end hybrid at Hillgrove High School in Powder Springs, Georgia, where he helped contribute to a 6A Quarterfinals appearance as a senior. Following his polished high school career, Chubb decided to continue his football talents at NC State University, where he would eventually become one of the best pass-rushers in the country.  

Beginning his college career as a mere contributor (mostly on special teams), Chubb appeared in two games as a freshman and collected four total tackles. His success on special teams, combined with a strong offseason, helped earn Chubb a starting spot by the start of his sophomore season. 

After making the switch from linebacker to defensive end, Chubb started to display flashes of the top-ten NFL prospect that he is today, recording 66 total tackles, 10.5 tackles for loss, five sacks, and two forced fumbles. 

In his junior season, Chubb really began to take his game to another level, as he doubled his totals from a year before in tackles for loss (up to 21.0 from 10.5) and sacks (up to 10.0 from 5.0), while still managing to accumulate 56 total tackles. Perhaps his most memorable moment from his junior year was when he sacked Vanderbilt quarterback Kyle Shurmur in the Independence Bowl, earning the praise of Kyle’s father Pat Shurmur (Giants head coach), who has showed extensive interest in Chubb during the scouting period.

How I grade Edge Rushers’ Film for the NFL Draft
1.Speed rush with bend
2.Power/bull rush
3.Quick 1st stephttps://t.co/iIP4nJJ2eS recognition
5.Effort/motor
6.Times on the ground
7.Punishing tackler
8.Hand use to create separation#BradleyChubb pic.twitter.com/L9V4xkheSK

— John Chapman (@JL_Chapman) March 25, 2018

During his senior season, Chubb was simply astonishing, racking up another 10.0 sacks to go along with 72 total tackles, 23 tackles for loss (second in the NCAA last year), and two passes defended. His impressive play earned him unanimous first-team All-American and first-team All-ACC honors, as well as the Ted Hendricks Award, given to the top defensive end in college football.

It was 18 days until the #NFLDraft

& Every legit mock, has finished the math

Number 1, 2 & 3 all mock QB’s

Number 4 they have Chubb to the #Browns a finished attack!

Visions of Garrett, Ogbah, & Chubb

The #Dawgpound in a frenzy & cheering thier lovehttps://t.co/3Ttmeqe0Sr

— Football Nerd of OHIO (@HannahsDevon) April 8, 2018

Pros

Chubb offers the lethal combination of size and athleticism at the defensive end position. He is a relentless rusher, who consistently overpowered offensive tackles and disrupted opposing quarterbacks in college. Moreover, Chubb possesses superb range for a lineman and the ability to drop back in coverage with his background as a linebacker in high school. 

Stab. Get tackle off balance. Rush inside beating two blockers. Sack. Bradley Chubb is a monster. #Browns pic.twitter.com/mxHtJYSCEm

— Dustin Fox (@DustinFox37) March 28, 2018

bradley chubb is #explosive as hell. politely moves the tackle out of the way. pic.twitter.com/Zr5ssv06Xs

— charles mcdonald (a guy at the airport) (@FourVerts) March 29, 2018

Furthermore, Chubb is a pure tackler, who was an overpowering force in the backfield at NC State, constantly wrapping up quarterbacks and running backs for losses. Chubb also has quick, active hands, which he utilizes to bat down passes and create strip sacks, as illustrated by his four passes defended and six forced fumbles over his final three years in college. In addition, coming from the ACC, Chubb has the necessary experience to prepare him for the tackles and guards that the NFL has to offer.

Bradley Chubb is REALLY impressive. He’s not just a pass rushing DE or one trick pony, he does everything at a high level. He can beat tackles with speed or power while also able to anchor and set the edge against the run #NFLDraft #NFL #NFLUK #DraftTwitter pic.twitter.com/9BZEhFMcvU

— Tom Like (@TomLikeNFL) March 20, 2018

Cons

Although he has been labeled as the “best player in the 2018 NFL Draft” by some, as with every player, he does come with some weaknesses. Chubb’s major concern is his history of extracurricular actions after a game during his senior season. Following an impressive upset-win over then-No. 12 Florida State, Chubb ran out to midfield, where he spit on the Seminole logo in an alleged act of disrespect.

Anyone else catch Bradley Chubb sprint to the middle of the field to spit on the FSU logo? pic.twitter.com/EcICVY1vcY

— Trevor Sikkema (@TampaBayTre) September 23, 2017

Video: NC State’s Bradley Chubb on spitting on FSU logo pic.twitter.com/1IVmV84SpA

— Joe Reedy (@joereedy) September 23, 2017

Aside from his questionable post-game stunts, Chubb has the tendency to play out of control at times. He is also a bit undersized for a lineman at just 237 pounds; when he was forced to rush inside at NC State, it took him a while to shed blocks and get to the quarterback. To be an effective, all-around defensive end in the NFL, Chubb will surely need to play within himself and bulk up a bit.

Here’s O’Neill against Bradley Chubb. Chubb almost seems surprised at how quickly O’Neill kicks and slides out of his stance to mirror him. Good finish at the end too with his hands/length to get Chubb off-balance. #Patriots pic.twitter.com/ob4BTewkQI

— Evan Lazar (@ezlazar) March 21, 2018

Verdict

Chubb is an overall monster who should become an instant starter at the next level, whether it be at end or outside linebacker. His exceptional versatility, combined with elite speed (4.65 40-yard dash), should make one lucky NFL coach very happy. Although his extracurricular issues are a bit concerning, Chubb did later apologize for the Florida State incident, saying it wasn’t intentional. 

Best Fit

Without a doubt, Chubb is the best defensive lineman in this draft class and a lock to be drafted in the top ten of the first round. There’s been talk of the Browns possibly taking Chubb with their first or fourth overall picks, as well as of the Giants potentially snagging him at two. However, should they pass on him, Chubb’s most popular predicted landing spot has been to the Indianapolis Colts, who desperately need defensive line help, at six.

Edited by Jazmyn Brown.

SQuiz
How many defensive linemen were taken in the first round of the 2017 NFL Draft?
Created 4/8/18
  1. 2
  2. 6
  3. 1
  4. 4

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