2017 NFL DRAFT

Dante Fowler Jr., OLB

School: Florida  |  Conference: SEC
College Experience: Junior  |  Hometown: St. Petersburg, FL
Height/Weight: 6-3 / 261 lbs.
Projected Ranking
OverallPositionProj. Rnd.
511

Player Lowdown

Combine Results
40 Yd 20 Yd 10 Yd 225 Bench Vertical jump Broad Shuttle 3-Cone Drill
4.602.69-19 32 1/2-4.327.40
Workout Results
40 Yd 20 Yd 10 Yd 225 Bench Vertical jump Broad Shuttle 3-Cone Drill
4.562.691.5919 32 1/29'4"4.327.40

Mock Draft Expert Analysis

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Player Overview

In 2013 -- Fowler's first season as a starter -- he was recognized with the SEC Defensive Player of the Week against the most gifted offensive line he faced (Tennessee) and earned second-team all-conference honors by the league media for his play, recording 50 tackles, 10.5 tackles for loss, 3.5 sacks and three forced fumbles.

He has struggled against the run and needs to play more assignment sound, but the versatility and skill-set is exciting for the next level, and Fowler projects as one of the 2015 class' top available pass rushers.

Besides demonstrating the character traits that will endear him to his future NFL team (and fan base), Fowler possesses the athletic attributes to warrant first round consideration - perhaps as early as a top 10 pick. Fowler is strong enough to handle defensive end duties in a traditional four-man front but his light feet, balance and instincts will be equally valued by clubs looking for a stand-up edge rusher.

Strengths Weaknesses

STRENGTHS: Values lies with his versatility. Depending on the situation the Gators line him up at RDE, LDE, DT, and OLB, ask him to rush from the two-point and three-point stance and occasionally drop him into coverage -- including after he has started the play with his hand in the dirt. Lined up primarily in the "BUCK" linebacker spot in 2014, and is best suited for a 3-4 base defense at the next level where he can disrupt the edge with his aggressive hands and explosive lower body.

Fowler's light feet and fluid athleticism belie his powerful, compact frame and make him a tough matchup. He is an energetic defender with above average get-off quickness and the athletic traits that make him a nuisance to block in space.

WEAKNESSES: To take the next step, Fowler must continue to get stronger at the point of attack and show improved recognition, as too often he charges into the backfield only to allow the ballcarrier to slip past him.

Compares To: Terrell Suggs, Baltimore Ravens -- Like the 6-3, 260 pound Suggs, Fowler lacks ideal length for some schemes but he's a passionate, productive edge rusher with Pro Bowl upside.

--Dane Brugler & Rob Rang

 
 
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