Alim McNeill NFL Draft 2021: Scouting Report for Detroit Lions DL

BR NFL Scouting DepartmentContributor IMay 1, 2021

Georgia Tech quarterback Jeff Sims (10) escapes from North Carolina State defensive tackle Alim McNeill (29)  during the first half of an NCAA college football game in Raleigh, N.C., Saturday, Dec. 5, 2020. (Ethan Hyman/The News & Observer via AP, Pool)
Ethan Hyman/Associated Press

HEIGHT: 6'1 7/8"




—Quick reader who is difficult to down block.

—Shuck move, read live off of his bull rush, is his best pass-rushing move.

—Played a true nose tackle position frequently in his defensive structure.

—Strong enough upper body to win with a bull rush at the NFL with his hand placement.

—Well-developed locked-out long-arm technique allows him to be patient and read the backfield.

—Stack and shed ability is a premium trait.



—Second effort and ability as a run-and-chase player is not evident, as he essentially plays in a phone booth.

—Pass rushing ability is limited for a defensive tackle prospect of his caliber.

—Foot speed limits him when attempting to keep contained on stunts.

—Was rotated fairly often at NC State, and the number of snaps he can play per game or per season in the NFL may be an issue.



25 TKL, 4.5 TFL, 1 SK, 1 INT, 1 FR, 1 FF, 1 TD



—Originally enrolled at NC State as both a football and baseball player before focusing on football full-time.

—Brother just signed with Oregon in the past recruiting cycle.

—Was a highly sought-after recruit as a prep, turning down an offer from Alabama to attempt to play two sports for the Wolfpack.



Alim McNeill has been a consistent player for NC State, playing in 35 games and making 18 starts over three years with the Wolfpack before declaring early for the NFL draft. His career began with freshman All-American honors as a rotational player before capping off his junior season with First-Team All-ACC honors.

His scouting report can be summed up with the term “space-eater,” as that was his primary objective in college, but his 4.96-second 40-yard dash time and background as a high school running back is opening eyes to the untapped potential he might have as a penetrator in a different scheme than the one he played in with the Wolfpack.


GRADE: 7.52/10 (Round 3)



PRO COMPARISON: Larry Ogunjobi


Written by B/R NFL Scout Justis Mosqueda


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