Teams at the NFL Scouting Combine reportedly were "enamored" with edge-rusher prospect David Ojabo, according to ESPN's Dan Graziano.
Per that report, teams believe the Michigan product needs to add muscle to his 250-pound frame, but "the thought on Ojabo is that if you get him now, you could have a superstar at a critical position in two or three years."
The 21-year-old Ojabo had a fantastic 2021 season, posting 35 tackles (12 for loss), 11 sacks, five forced fumbles and a fumble recovery in 13 games. Alongside Heisman runner-up Aidan Hutchinson (14 sacks), he gave the Wolverines one of the scariest pass rushes in college football.
One thing that makes Ojabo such an exciting prospect is just how raw he still is, as he switched from basketball to football in high school and didn't play as a freshman at Michigan.
From that background to one of the top prospects in this year's NFL draft. ESPN's Mel Kiper Jr. ranked him as the No. 11 overall prospect in the class of 2022 on his latest big board, noting that he's "flashed advanced pass-rush moves" and his "physical traits pop on tape."
And the NFL Network's Daniel Jeremiah has Ojabo 18th on his big board, noting that he has "ideal size, explosiveness and fluidity for the position."
When a 250-pound man hits a 4.55-second 40-yard dash at the combine, it turns heads:
NFL Draft @NFLDraft
Top official 40 times among second group of defensive linemen at <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/NFLCombine?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#NFLCombine</a>:<br><br>1) Amaré Barno, <a href="https://twitter.com/HokiesFB?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@HokiesFB</a>, 4.36<br>2) Sam Williams, <a href="https://twitter.com/OleMissFB?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@OleMissFB</a>, 4.46<br>3) Travon Walker, <a href="https://twitter.com/GeorgiaFootball?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@GeorgiaFootball</a>, 4.51<br>4) David Ojabo, <a href="https://twitter.com/UMichFootball?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@UMichFootball</a>, 4.55<br>5) Kayvon Thibodeaux, <a href="https://twitter.com/oregonfootball?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@oregonfootball</a>, 4.58
Teams looking to bolster off the edge this season are going to have some solid options, with players like Ojabo, Hutchinson, Kayvon Thibodeaux, Devin Lloyd, Travon Walker, Jermaine Johnson II, George Karlaftis, Boye Mafe and Arnold Ebiketie, among others, all potential first-round talents.
The fact that Ojabo is so raw may keep him out of the top 10. But it sounds as though he's trending toward being a mid-first-rounder given his upside and excellent 2021 campaign.