Stansly Maponga Scouting Report: NFL Outlook for TCU DE

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Stansly Maponga Scouting Report: NFL Outlook for TCU DE
John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports

Stansly Maponga

Atlanta Falcons

Fifth Round: 153rd Pick

Despite a disappointing 2012 season, Stansly Maponga chose to declare for the 2013 NFL draft as a junior. It's impossible for any of us to know why Maponga made the decision, but there no NFL observers who, as of yet, project him as an early-round selection.

Will that change before the draft? Here's a profile of the former TCU defensive end.

 

Strengths

Despite being somewhat undersized, Maponga plays with power. He can be seen driving offensive linemen backwards, and he is rarely overpowered himself. Maponga's pass-rush repertoire includes a variety of moves to get to the quarterback. Though only 6'2", Maponga has long arms (34.125") and strong, active hands that show up in both the run and pass games.

 

Weaknesses

Maponga is the last defensive lineman to move.

Though he displays decent athleticism, Maponga's first step is inconsistent. He also tends to jump up too high with his initial step. Maponga lacks great closing speed and his inability to disengage from offensive linemen is also concerning. Maponga doesn't look particularly natural bending around the edge and may lack the flexibility to be great there.

 

Tools

Maponga's tools are nothing too impressive. He measures in at just 6'2", 256 pounds, though his long arms help him with leverage. In addition to being undersized, Maponga probably has below-average athleticism for a defensive end of his size. However, Maponga is surprisingly strong for such a small pass-rusher.

 

Intangibles/Character

Little information is available here. However, Maponga did choose to declare for the draft early despite head coach Gary Patterson advising him not to. Maponga has a young daughter and financial issues did seem to factor into the Zimbabwe-born Maponga's decision to enter the draft after his junior season.

 

System

Maponga played defensive end in the Horned Frogs' well-known 3-3-5 defense. His duties were that of a typical defensive end—rush the passer and contain the run. On occasion, Maponga would stand up and even drop back in coverage.

 

Pass Rush

Maponga shows a strong spin move.

Maponga's biggest issue as a pass-rusher is his inconsistent get-off.

At times, Maponga will appear to be fairly explosive and quick off the edge. On other plays, though, he will look slow and sluggish. He is the last defensive linemen moving on far too many plays. Maponga isn't really a natural off the edge either. He doesn't seem to have much bend, and he struggles to run the arc. His lack of speed is also a concern when Maponga attempts to make plays in the opposition's backfield.

Maponga's biggest assets as a pass-rusher are his strength and hands. Maponga is surprisingly powerful, and he is able to bull rush offensive tackles into the backfield. His strong and active hands are also an asset here. When rushing the passer, Maponga often utilizes a strong spin move or a swim move to get past offensive linemen. 

If Maponga can be more consistent with his first step, he would be much more effective at rushing the passer. However, he doesn't have the pure physical ability of a double-digit-sack player in the NFL.

 

Against the Run

The typical 255-pound defensive end is weak against the run. Apparently, Stansly Maponga isn't typical.

Maponga isn't amazing at the point of attack, but he's strong and rarely loses ground. He rarely breaks contain, always remembering not to give the running back a chance to bust a run outside. And, Maponga is occasionally able to push offensive linemen into the backfield.

Maponga does well in containment but is unable to get off the block and make the play.

Though Maponga does a good job at the point of attack, he isn't always great at disengaging from blockers. He struggles to get off blocks and make plays despite often being in position. Maponga's length and hands could help him improve here.

Maponga has room to improve against the run, but he isn't a huge project. In time, he could be an asset against stopping the run.

 

Tackling

Maponga's only issue with tackling is his limited athleticism and lack of closing speed. When chasing a quarterback, he will struggle to adjust as the passer moves. In the run game, Maponga does a good job of wrapping up and bringing the ball-carrier to the ground.

 

Use of Hands

Maponga is advanced in his uses of hands. He shows a strong punch and keeps his hands moving at all times. His placement isn't always perfect, but he is strong enough to knock a much larger offensive lineman backwards. If his initial punch doesn't work, though, Maponga will keep going with a flurry of hand movements.

 

Scheme Versatility/Future Role

Maponga isn't athletic or comfortable enough in space to play in a 3-4 defense. He is essentially limited to playing defensive end in a 4-3 scheme. Maponga lacks the physical ability of a starter in the NFL, but he could be a solid rotational player capable of filling in at a reasonable level. 

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