• My Scores
  • NHL
  • NFL
  • NBA
  • NCAA BB
  • NCAA FB
2015 NFL DRAFT
player photo

Justin Harrell

Height: 6-5 | Weight: 300 | College: Tennessee
 
Copyright NFLDraftScout.com, distributed by The Sports Xchange
Overview

Harrell, the team captain who wears his emotions on his sleeve, knew the veterans were needed to step up and take charge in 2006 after a disappointing previous season. He was primed for a banner senior year, but suffered a ruptured left biceps tendon in the second season.

The team doctors ruled Harrell lost for the season and scheduled surgery, but the gritty veteran postponed the procedure one more week. He had his arm heavily bandaged and stepped out on the field with the starting unit for a crucial match-up against Florida. The Vols fought valiantly and Harrell produced three tackles with a stop behind the line of scrimmage, but the Gators rallied for a 21-20 victory. Right after the game, the team lost its injured star for the rest of the year, as he finally went under the knife, bringing his Tennessee career to a close.

Harrell was a standout defensive lineman at Westview High School. He was selected

Tennessee's Class 2A "Mr. Football" in 2001, adding Prep Football Report and Prep Star All-American honors. He was named West Tennessee's Defensive Player of the Year by the Jackson Sun and earned Class 2A All-State accolades, as he helped the 2001 team to a

13-2 record and a state runner-up finish. After his final season, he played in the Georgia-Tennessee All-Star Game.

A three-year starter on both offense and defense, Harrell caught 18 passes for 354 yards and six touchdowns as a tight end and recorded 72 tackles as defensive lineman, including 19 for loss, four sacks and eight pass deflections as a senior. During his junior year, he caught 21 passes for 291 yards and three touchdowns. Defensively, he recorded 61 tackles, 12 for loss, and deflected four passes. He was also a three-year starter in basketball, as he averaged 17 points per game his senior season.

Harrell enrolled at Tennessee in 2002, spending the season performing on the scout team. Hard luck with injuries limited him to eight games as a reserve defensive tackle in 2003. He missed more than half of spring drills after right leg surgery. In fall camp, he broke his ankle, sitting out the first five games. When he returned, he re-injured the ankle after just one snap against Miami and saw limited action the rest of the year. He finished with 10 tackles (5 solos), a stop for a loss and a quarterback pressure.

In 2004, Harrell started the team's first 11 games at right defensive tackle before an ankle injury against Kentucky would limit his play in the final two games. He registered 26 tackles (17 solos) with 11 pressures, 1.5 sacks and 4.5 stops for losses. He also batted down four passes and recovered a pair of fumbles.

Harrell started all 11 games in 2005, shifting to left tackle. He totaled 39 tackles (21 solos) with 2.5 sacks and 7.5 stops behind the line of scrimmage. He intercepted a pair of passes, returning one for a touchdown and was credited with eight pressures. He also caused one fumble and batted away three passes. For his performance, he earned second-team All-Southeastern Conference honors.

The defensive captain started the first three games of the 2006 season at left tackle before missing the rest of the season. He posted seven tackles (three solos) with a pressure and a stop for a loss. With Harrell in the lineup, the team averaged 2.33 sacks per game. With Harrell sidelined, the Vols managed just an average of one.

In 35 games, Harrell started 25 times. He registered 82 tackles (46 solos) with four sacks for minus-32 yards and 14 stops for losses of 57 yards. He collected 21 quarterback pressures, recovered two fumbles and caused four others. He knocked down eight passes and intercepted two for 36 yards in returns, including a touchdown.

Analysis

Positives: Has thick upper body mass with a firm chest, shoulders and good arm muscle definition … Has big hips, thick thighs and calves and room on his frame to add at least another 20 pounds of bulk with no loss in quickness … Quick and explosive off the snap and even though he was used mostly to occupy multiple blockers at the line of scrimmage, he does a good job of anchoring and clogging up the inside rush lanes … Has outstanding weight room strength and is starting to learn how to translate that to the football field (must to keep his hands inside and active to get full value out of his punch) … Does an effective job of combining aggressiveness with strength to create an explosive surge off the snap … Maintains a low center of gravity to fill the inside lanes … Will make plays down field and shows good urgency closing on the ball … Lacks ideal instincts, but shows no hesitation getting to the ball once he locates it … Leader by example type who proved his moxie by refusing surgery to play with a ruptured biceps vs. Florida in 2006 … Responsible, mature type who really embraced the leadership role thrust upon him as a senior … Will duck his head at times coming off the ball, but has the leg drive and burst to gain advantage … If he learns to anticipate the snap quicker, he has that natural burst needed to dominate at the line of scrimmage … When he hunkers his pads down and drive his foot into the ground, he is very effective at containing inside run plays … Has good change of direction agility and it is rare to see him exposed on the move … If he learns to use his hands better to gain leverage, he could be very effective in attempts to stack and control … Has the strength to split double teams, but must be conscious of using his hands … Compensates for a lack of ideal timed speed by taking proper angles to gain position to make the tackle working down the line … Difficult to handle in one-on-one situations as he will constantly battle until the whistle … Delivers a punishing hand jolt as he slides down the line of scrimmage and has the balance to sidestep and slip past the blocker when bull rushing … Still plays more on his raw ability, but shows quickness reacting to the running plays, where his lateral agility is shown while giving chase … Not much of a pass rusher, as he is used more in run containment, but shows effective rip and club moves in attempts to get penetration … More of a push-type of pass rusher, but has the strength to gain inside penetration and is decent trying to adjust on the move … Won't get to the quarterback when taking a wide loop, but up the middle he closes quickly on the quarterback, showing the leg drive and burst to collapse the pocket (better getting to the passer from his inside alignment than on the edge) … When he extends his long arms, he does a nice job of keeping blockers off him (needs to do this with more consistency, though).

Negatives: Not that "field smart" and needs to make quicker reads, but shows good urgency to pursue when he locates the ball … Must learn to keep his head up coming out of his stance, as this causes him to lose sight of the ball, especially when working through a crowd … Has a good short-area burst, but when he over-pursues, he lacks sharp stop-and-go action to redirect suddenly (will gather some) … Is susceptible to angle blocks and traps (mostly when he keeps his head down or fails to maintain inside position with his hands) … Lacks ideal hand placement to prevent blockers from getting underneath to lock on and ride him out of the play (blockers get their hands into his chest too often) … Has to improve his hand usage, as blockers know they can attack his feet without him countering (must learn to keep his hands active in attempts to separate).

Compares To: JOHNNY JOLLY-Green Bay … Jolly might not have played much in 2006, but Harrell has that same explosion off the snap that lets both occupy multiple blockers. Harrell plays with the strength needed to take up space and while he lacks sustained speed, he does explode off the ball. He needs to develop a better feel for the ball and must be more active with his hands. His main job is clogging and constricting the inside rush lanes, but he must create better separation with his hands if he hopes to improve his pass rushing skills. For a team looking for a plugger in the middle, Harrell could be the answer, if he is recovered from his torn biceps.

Career Notes

Of Harrell's 25 starting assignments, 11 came at right defensive tackle and 14 others were on the left side … In 2006, the defense averaged 2.33 sacks per game with Harrell in the lineup, but that figure reduced to just 1.0 sack for each of the 10 games he missed.

2006 Season

Super Sleeper Team selection and preseason All-Southeastern Conference choice by The NFL Draft Report … The defensive captain was sorely missed in the ten games he was forced to sit out due to left biceps tendon surgery … He started the team's first three games before undergoing the knife and actually played in the Florida contest with the injury that he suffered in the Air Force clash … He finished his interrupted season with seven tackles (3 solos), a stop for a 1-yard loss and one quarterback pressure.

2006 Game Analysis

California … Opened the season with a pair of assisted tackles … Pressured QB Nate Longshore into throwing a second-&-5 incomplete pass that was intended for Robert Jordan on the game's first series from scrimmage … Head to Head Competition-OG#55-Greg Van Huesen.

Air Force … Followed with two solo tackles … Stopped Ryan Williams for a 4-yard loss on a screen pass from Shaun Carney with six minutes left in the first quarter, but Harrell was ruled to have jumped offside, negating the play … Four downs later, Harrell took down Williams for a 1-yard loss on a first-&-10 run at the AF 42 … Head to Head Competition-OG#62-Curtis Grantham.

Florida … Heavily taped because of his torn biceps, Harrell shocked Volunteer fans when he stepped on to the field to start the game. He went on to make three tackles that stopped the Gators for no gain on all three running plays he was involved in … Harrell tackled DeShawn Wynn at the line of scrimmage on a second-&-1 run from the UF 46 five minutes into the game … At the start of the second quarter, he pressured QB Chris Leak, who rolled out of the pocket to go down for a 1-yard loss and three plays later, Harrell teamed with defensive end Xavier Mitchell to take down Wynn for no gain on a first-&-10 run at the UT 22 … Head to Head Competition-OG#67-Drew Miller.

2005 Season

Associated Press and The NFL Draft Report awarded Harrell All-Southeastern Conference second-team honors … SEC Defensive Lineman of the Week vs. Alabama-Birmingham …

Started all year at left defensive tackle, recording 39 tackles (21 solos) with 2.5 sacks for minus 10 yards and 7.5 stops for losses totaling 16 yards … Credited with eight quarterback pressures and deflected three passes … Intercepted two others for 36 yards in returns and one touchdown.

2005 Game Analysis

Alabama-Birmingham … Opened the season with his first career interception, returning the ball 29 yards and added four tackles (3 solos).

Florida … Made eight tackles (3 solos), including one that stopped tailback Kestahn Moore for a 1-yard loss on a run up the middle with 9:29 left in the first half.

Louisiana State … Followed with six tackles (2 solos) and a pair of stops behind the line of scrimmage, including one that stopped tailback Joseph Addai for a 1-yard loss with 9:35 remaining in the game … Earlier in the third quarter, Harrell took down Benny Brazell after a 3-yard catch on a third-&-9 play, forcing the Tigers to settle for a 42-yard field goal.

Mississippi … On the game's first play from scrimmage, Harrell teamed with linebacker Kevin Simon to tackle Mico McSwain for a 3-yard loss on a run from the Ole Miss 20 … Two plays later, Harrell sacked QB Mike Spurlock for a 4-yard loss (along with defensive end Parys Haralson) on a third-&-3 play, as the Rebels were then forced to punt.

South Carolina … Posted four solo tackles with three stops behind the line of scrimmage …

In the third quarter, Harrell teamed with linebacker Kevin Simon to take down Mike Davis for a 1-yard loss and two plays later, Harrell joined fellow tackle Jesse Mahelona to bring down Davis for a 3-yard loss … With 1:37 remaining in the game, Harrell again stopped Davis for a 1-yard loss on a run at the UT 40.

Notre Dame … Credited with a pressure, a sack and two solo stops for losses of 3 yards …

Sacked QB Brady Quinn for a 1-yard loss with 11:14 left to play and with 6:50 left on the clock, Harrell tackled tailback Travis Thomas for a 2-yard loss on a first-&-goal run from the UT 8.

Vanderbilt … Harrell's only tackle was a 7-yard sack of QB Jay Cutler on third-&-10 with 3:03 left to play … Late in the first quarter, Harrell also batted down a second-&-goal pass thrown by Cutler from the UT 5.

Kentucky … Closed out the season with four tackles (3 solos), an interception, a pass break-up and a forced fumble … Batted away a third-&-10 pass thrown by Andre' Woodson that was intended for Curtis Pulley early in the first quarter … Late in the third quarter, Pulley attempted an option pass, but Harrell intercepted the pass at the UK 7 and returned it 7 yards for a touchdown … With 9:24 left to play, Harrell caused a fumble when he knocked the ball out of Pulley's hands at the UT 28.

2004 Season

Harrell started the team's first eleven games at right defensive tackle before an ankle sprain vs. Kentucky forced him to see limited reserve action in the team's final two contests … Finished with 26 tackles (17 solos) with 1.5 sacks for minus 22 yards, 4.5 stops for losses of 36 yards and eleven quarterback pressures … Caused three fumbles and recovered two others … Also deflected four passes.

2004 Game Analysis

Posted one tackle, a pass deflection and a pressure vs. Nevada-Las Vegas … Caused a fumble that he recovered and collected two tackles with a pair of pass deflections in the Georgia clash … Added two pressures and three tackles vs. Mississippi … Totaled four tackles with a pair of stops behind the line of scrimmage vs. South Carolina … Had two tackles and two pressures vs. Notre Dame … Recovered a fumble and delivered a solo tackle and a pressure in the Vanderbilt clash … Was forced to leave the Kentucky game with an ankle injury … Named Cotton Bowl Defensive MVP after coming up with three tackles, one sack and a fumble recovery vs. Texas A&M.

2003 Season

Missed most of spring drills after undergoing right leg surgery and then sat out the team's first five games with a right ankle sprain suffered during the first week of August camp … Re-injured his ankle after only one play vs. Miami upon his return and saw limited action the rest of the year … Appeared in the team's final eight games, recording ten tackles (5 solos) with a stop for a 4-yard loss, a pass deflection and a pressure … Posted a season-high three tackles vs. Duke and added two more in the Georgia clash.

2002 Season

Redshirted as a freshman.

Injury Report

2003: Underwent right leg surgery (undisclosed injury) in March, missing more than half of spring drills … Suffered a broken bone in his right ankle in August camp (8/08) that forced him to sit out the first five games of the season … Re-injured the ankle after only one play in the Miami game upon his return.

2004: Left the Kentucky game and did not start the final two games due to a right ankle sprain.

2006: Suffered a torn left biceps tendon vs. Air Force (9/09). Played the next game vs. Florida, then missed the rest of the season after undergoing surgery.

Agility Tests

Campus: 5.08 in the 40-yard dash … 500-pound bench press … 500-pound squat … 315-pound power clean … 30-inch vertical jump … 33 1/4-inch arm length … 10-inch hands.

High School

Attended Westview (Martin, Tenn.) High School, playing football for head coach Don Coady … Standout defensive lineman who was selected Tennessee's Class 2A "Mr. Football" in 2001, adding Prep Football Report and Prep Star All-American honors … Named West Tennessee's Defensive Player of the Year by the Jackson Sun and earned Class 2A All-State accolades, as he helped the 2001 team to a 13-2 record and a state runner-up finish … After his final season, he played in the Georgia-Tennessee All-Star Game … A three-year starter on both offense and defense, Harrell caught 18 passes for 354 yards and six touchdowns as a tight end and recorded 72 tackles as defensive lineman, including 19 for loss, four sacks and eight pass deflections as a senior … During his junior year, he caught 21 passes for 291 yards and three touchdowns … Defensively, he recorded 61 tackles, 12 for loss, and deflected four passes … Three-year starter in basketball who averaged 17 points per game his senior season.

Personal

Sports Management major … Born Justin Tyrell Harrell on 2/14/84 … Resides in Martin, Tennessee.

 
 

CBSSports.com Shop

Men's New England Patriots Nike Navy Blue 2014 AFC East Division Champions T-Shirt

NFL Division Champs Gear
Get their favorite team gear
Shop Now

Fantasy Games