Best of the West - Week 9 - Defense

Defensive Line:

BEST: Trent Murphy (OLB/DE-STAN) had a JJ Watt like performance against OSU. He technically is a OLB, but he plays around the LOS like a D-Lineman. He terrorized Sean Mannion all night. 8 tackles, 3.5 TLF (2 sacks), 1 PBU, and 1 blocked kick. While he doesn’t have the visibility of Barr or Van Noy, he could be the most interesting pass rushing prospect in the West because he can play with his hand on the ground.

Linebackers:

BEST: Jordan Zumwalt (ILB-UCLA) was all over the field against the Ducks. Barr was neutralized for the most part, but that left Zumwalt to run free. He was very confident, jawing after each tackle. He wasn’t on my radar as a draftable player, but now he is.

Defensive Backs:

BEST: Ifo Ekpre-Olomu (CB-UO) locked down whoever he faced on the UCLA offense. He was a large part of why Brett Hundley only threw for 64 yards. He is truly a shutdown corner. He tends to lean a little pre-snap, but has quick hips and can change directions on a dime. Also, he’s a decent enough tackler to take down running backs.

Honorable Mention: Avery Patterson (FS-UO) had himself a game. 3 TFL, 1 PBU, 1 INT. He plays very aggressively. He’s a tool that fits Nick Alliotti’s defense perfectly. He might not get drafted, but could be a UFA and special teams contributor. I’d like to see if he can add some weight and play SS in the NFL with his tackling skills.