Aaron Donald is the most heralded defensive tackle in the 2014 NFL Draft. However, that doesn't mean that we can't look at several of his competitors in the defensive tackel market. There are several good ones available in what is amounting to be a decent interior defensive line class.
Timmy Jernigan is one such player who is commonly looked at as a first-round caliber player. He seems to have overtaken Ra'Shede Hageman for that spot right behind Donald in a lot of people's eyes. Let's take a look for ourselves.
- Stout at the point of attack. Can anchor very well and isn't easily moved.
- Makes good use of his heavy, active hands to stack and shed at the point of attack.
- Motor and hustle are very good.
- Has disruptive ability to fill in gaps and collapse pocket.
- Great awareness and can find the ball carrier and get them down. Isn't fooled easily.
- Explosion is only average. For a 3 technique, needs to be more athletic.
- Pass rush ability and penetration skills only average.
- Undersized at 6-foot-2, 299 pounds
- Stiff and has inconsistent technique when it comes to leverage.
Does He Fit With The Giants?
Not really. I don't see him as an ideal fit for what the Giants need inside. I don't personally think Jernigan is a good enough pass rusher with enough explosion to take advantage of what Jonathan Hankins brings. At the 3 technique spot, an anchor the caliber of Jernigan is nice, but I want speed and explosion.
Timmy Jernigan vs Boston College (2013) (via Aaron Aloysius)
Big Board Rankings
Big Blue View - 30
Mocking The Draft - 30
CBS Sports - 22
Draft Countdown - 19
Draft Tek - 15
I personally don't have Jernigan as a first-round caliber prospect. On the BBV big board, he is rated at 30, but my personal ranking is 39. I just don't see the penetration on a consistent enough basis to put him any higher. He is a powerful, active player who will no doubt have the upside to be one of the best DTs in this class, but he's not there yet. He's an average to slightly above average athlete, but compared to Aaron Donald, I'm not sure there should even be a discussion.
Would I take him at 43? I don't think so. Not because he isn't worthy, but I just don't see him as a good fit. Watch the video (and others) and let us know your opinion.