In the NFL, rushing the passer is just as important as stopping the run is. That’s where Nikita Whitlock’s talent really comes in. Sure, he played nose tackle in college and would consistently get swallowed by double-teams, but he projects better to linebacker or defensive end in the pros.
In the right scheme, Whitlock could easily be the next Elvis Dumvervil. He’s undersized but intelligent and plays with a fight that few show. If there’s a guy in this year’s draft who could be a statistical leader after going undrafted, it’d be Whitlock.
Projected Selection Range: Round 6-Undrafted
2013: 12 games played, 82 tackles, 18.0 tackles for loss, 9.0 sacks, 7 QB hurries, 2 fumbles forced, 3 pass deflections, 2 blocked kicks, 1 punt return, 25 yards
2012: 10 games played, 51 tackles, 5.5 tackles for yoss, 3.0 sacks, 2 QB hurries
2011: 13 games played, 64 tackles, 14.0 tackles for loss, 3.5 sacks, 3 QB hurries, 1 fumble forced, 1 pass deflection
2010: 12 games played, 44 tackles, 10.5 tackles for loss, 3.0 sacks, 2 QB hurries, 2 fumbles forced, 3 pass deflections
Combine/Pro Day Measurements
Height: 5'9.75" Weight: 250 pounds
40-yard dash: 4.82 sec. 10-yard split: 1.69 sec.
20-yard shuttle: 4.34 sec. Three-cone drill: 6.91 sec. Bench reps: 43 reps
Vertical jump: 33.0" Broad jump: 9'0"
All stats used are either from Pro Football Focus' Premium Stats (subscription required), ESPN, CFBStats or the NFL. All combine and pro day info is courtesy NFL Draft Scout. All contract information is courtesy of Spotrac and Rotoworld.
Scott Carasik is a Featured Columnist for Bleacher Report. He covers the Atlanta Falcons, College Football, NFL and the NFL draft. He also runs DraftFalcons.com.