Trent Murphy, DE

School: Stanford  |  Conference: PAC12
College Experience: Senior  |  Hometown: Mesa, AZ
Height/Weight: 6-5 / 250 lbs.
Projected Ranking
OverallPositionProj. Rnd.

Player Lowdown

Combine Results
40 Yd 20 Yd 10 Yd 225 Bench Vertical jump Broad Shuttle 3-Cone Drill
4.862.80-19 35 1/2-4.206.78
Workout Results
40 Yd 20 Yd 10 Yd 225 Bench Vertical jump Broad Shuttle 3-Cone Drill
4.852.711.6519 35 1/29'10"4.206.78

Player Overview

While Andrew Luck or Shayne Skov may have generated most of the buzz over the years, perhaps no player personified the change in culture at Stanford more than Murphy, a relatively lightly-recruited prep who built himself into a physical and playmaking two-time All-American for the Cardinal.

After redshirting in 2009 and playing only two games a year later due to undisclosed injury, Murphy started the final 40 consecutive games of his career. He hinted at his playmaking ability with an impressive starting debut in 2011, registering 40 tackles, 10 tackles for loss and 6.5 sacks but these numbers pale in comparison to his breakout 2012 season of 56 tackles, 18 tackles for loss and 10 sacks or his campaign in Palo Alto, in which he recorded 62 tackles, including an eye-popping 23.5 tackles for loss and 15 sacks.

Critics will be quick to point out that Murphy was surrounded by a great deal of talent at Stanford and that while instinctive and physical, he's not particularly athletic. He starred at Stanford mostly at outside linebacker but surprised with a relatively undefined upper body at the Senior Bowl weigh-ins and was asked to drop down and play defensive end at the Senior Bowl, where his inexperience on the line showed.

In the NFL, the only trait more valued than toughness is athleticism. Regardless of the position he'll ultimately line up, Murphy will prove a fascinating experiment as to whether the former can overcome the latter.

Strengths Weaknesses

STRENGTHS: Possesses a surprisingly lean, country-strong frame with broad shoulders, a trim middle and long limbs with plenty of room for additional muscle mass. Lined up the majority of the time out of the two-point stance, showing fair speed off the corner in this role. Has a high, choppy back-pedal but gains ground quickly due to his long legs and has surprisingly fluid hips to turn and run with potential receivers. Shows better burst off the ball out of the three-point stance, timing the snap well and showing natural explosiveness in his legs to spring forward. Uses his hands well, including a very effective club and shoulder dip to efficiently cross the face of pass-blockers. Possesses at least fair closing speed, as well as vision and anticipation to stalk the ball-carrier, often meeting them as they attempt to flee rather than missing them deeper in the backfield. Instinctive defender. Locates the ball and is a high-motor player. Functional flexibility. Recognizes cut-blocks and sprawls well, using his hands to knock down defenders and keeping his eyes up to react to the quick-throw. Plays with a degree of toughness and physicality that every coach will appreciate... A former steer-wrestler and plays with this mentality.

WEAKNESSES: Will be viewed by many as a classic 'tweener. Does not possess the muscled-up frame teams are expecting as a defensive lineman nor the straight-line speed expected of a linebacker. Has been surrounded by other instinctive and physical players throughout his career at Stanford and Murphy's lack of ideal "juice" was evident against the better athletes at the Senior Bowl.

COMPARES TO: Jared Allen, Minnesota Vikings -- Through hard work, Allen (selected No. 126 overall by Kansas City) has made himself into a perennial Pro Bowler but I scouted him in person at the East-West Shrine Game in 2004 and it was far from a consensus that the Idaho State product would develop into this caliber of player, especially after he lifted 225 pounds just 13 times at the Combine. At a rangy 6-5, 252 pounds, Murphy doesn't necessarily project well to a classic 4-3 alignment or even the 3-4 scheme in which he starred for the Cardinal but like Allen (6-5, 260), he's one of the tougher, more ornery players I've come across. I think he'll ultimately out-play his draft selection, though not necessarily to the staggering degree as Allen.

--Rob Rang

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