Christopher Allen NFL Draft 2022: Scouting Report for Alabama EDGE
HEIGHT: 6'3 1/2"
WINGSPAN: 6'8 1/4"
40-YARD DASH: DNP
— Solid length. Allows him to set the edge and lock OL out of his frame.
— Overall sound run defense technique. Good eyes and hand usage.
— Decent get-off on pass-rushing downs.
— Above-average balance when fighting through contact.
— Above-average movement skills in space.
— Showed comfort as a stand-up player and with his hand in the dirt.
— On the light side for an edge prospect.
— Anchor against the run is not terrible, but it does waver at times. Maybe more of an issue in the NFL.
— Hands do not pop upon engagement. Rarely overwhelms OL that way.
— Speed and bend around the edge did not show up often enough.
Did not play due to season-ending foot injury in season opener
— 4-star recruit in 2017.
— Missed the entire 2018 season with a knee injury.
— Fractured his foot early in 2021, missing the remainder of the season.
— 2020 second-team All-SEC.
Christopher Allen played second fiddle to Will Anderson Jr. during his final full season in 2020, but he still has some NFL traits.
Unsurprisingly of an Alabama player, Allen is a technician. He does well to remain square when setting the edge and excels at making the most of his length to lock offensive tackles out of his frame. Though he lacks overwhelming strength to truly take over blocks, Allen's technique helps bridge the gap, and he consistently does enough to seal the edge. That said, Allen will likely need to pack on weight and strength to excel at the NFL level. His anchor does waver at times, and his hands do not pop upon engagement despite their consistent, effective placement.
Allen brings a confusing set of skills as a pass-rusher. He does well to hop out of his stance and get rolling, but his buildup speed from there is often lacking. That could be overcome with great bend, but Allen's bend and flexibility is closer to average than good, and it's not enough to fully make up for some of his other deficiencies. However, Allen does have better balance through contact than his run defense anchor would suggest, and he is a high-effort player with good movement skills in space, making him a good clean-up sack-earner. Allen also has comfort standing up on the edge as well as putting a hand in the dirt, so scheme and alignment should be no issue for him.
In a general sense, Allen is a fit for the modern NFL. He can play on the edge as a stand-up backer, attune to handling run defense responsibilities from there, and he can pin his ears back and rush the passer a little. However, Allen has no real standout trait, and his lack of weight and strength could become more of a problem in the NFL than it was at Alabama. Allen projects as a reliable, versatile backup or rotational player in a 3-4 structure.
GRADE: 6.4 (High-level Developmental Prospect - 5th Round)
OVERALL RANK: 163
POSITION RANK: EDGE21
PRO COMPARISON: Nate Orchard
Written by B/R NFL Scout Derrik Klassen