A very interesting prospect in this years NFL Draft is Florida State's Defensive End Cornellius "Tank" Carradine. Carradine was well on his way to being a first round pick and potentially even a top 5-10 pick in April's NFL Draft before he tore is ACL in late November. It's unclear if he'll be able to work out for teams prior to the draft, and it seems doubtful but he's trying. I believe Carradine will be a steal for whoever takes him. Where they take him is the question. Carradine has been clocked at having a pre-combine 40 time of 4.75.
Carradine played two seasons at Florida State and had great success. He totaled 118 tackles, 21 for a loss, 16.5 sacks, and 1 forced fumble. His best season came in 2012 when he totaled 80 tackles, 13 for a loss and 11 sacks in 12 games. Like I said earlier, he did tear his ACL in late November, but Florida State coach Jimbo Fisher doesn't expect Carradine to drop that far in Aprils Draft...
"He’ll be fine," Fisher told FOX Sports Florida. "Maybe a round at most. I think he’ll still play in the NFL and be very highly drafted."
Height / Weight: 6-5 / 265
Born: February 18, 1989 (24)
2012 OUTLOOK: Versatile defensive end, who can play either side in giving the Seminoles one of the top trios of defensive ends in the country. Excellent pass rusher, who is extremely quick off the ball and has a knack for getting to the quarterback. Tough to block in passing situations and also has improved as a run stopper.
2011: Junior college transfer who became a prominent contributor behind Bjoern Werner at the left defensive end position...played in all 13 games and ranked second among defensive ends with 38 tackles, including 24 solo stops...ranked third on the team with 5.5 sacks and fifth in tackles for loss with eight...tied for 10th in the ACC in sacks (5.5) as FSU was the only school with three players in the top 10 in the conference...posted a season-high five tackles at Clemson...had 1.5 tackles for loss against both Wake Forest and Virginia...tallied four tackles three other times against ULM, Wake Forest and Maryland...capped off the season with four tackles and a sack in the win over Notre Dame in the Champs Sports Bowl...given one of two academic awards for the junior class at the annual team banquet and selected as co-recipient with Nigel Bradham of the Bill McGrotha Humanitarian Award.
NFL.coms Scouting Report on Carradine
Carradine flashes explosion off the snap to challenge the lateral agility of right tackles, and can swipe them away with strong hands to slingshot into the pocket. He also plays with the leverage of a shorter player, brings a strong initial punch to bull lesser tackles off the ball, and simply shoves tight ends away like ragdolls in the run game. There’s certainly no issue with his motor, as he will hustle to the sideline if the play can be made.
Though Carradine shows most all of the physical attributes teams covet in a defensive end, his lack of experience is a negative. And if he isn’t on the field for any extended period of time in 2012, it might be tough for scouts to give him a starter’s grade because they don’t know what his level of stamina against better competition.
NFL COMPARISON: Justin Tuck
CBSSports.com Scouting Report on Carradine:
Strengths: Good-looking athlete with agile feet and very good closing speed. Natural bend and flexibility around the edge with smooth lateral quickness and redirection skills. Quick in pursuit to force the issue and has the athleticism to recover from a false step. Very good footwork to sidestep blockers to flatten and close on the pocket. Shows fluid movements and short-area burst, but also rangy. Active hands and limbs to swat and stay balanced through contact. Reliable in the open field, using his length to wrap and discipline to not sell out. Accurate recognition skills and showed immense development in this area, setting the edge and making quick reads. Improved hand use to rip and tear, keeping low pad level through the process. Hungry player and his effort doesn't waver, going hard for all four quarters and rarely taking a play off. Chiseled frame and looks the part. Stepped up in 2012 after starter Brandon Jenkins went down with injury, producing excellent numbers.
Weaknesses: Still growing at the position and developing his pass rush moves. Didn't become a starter until his senior season with most of his playing experience coming at the JUCO level. Needs to continue adding strength and bulk to his frame, can be overpowered at times in the trenches. Room to improve his snap anticipation off the edge with too many offsides penalties on his resume. Strong durability concerns after a torn ACL in his right knee in the fourth quarter of the 2012 season finale and most likely won't be able to work out for scouts pre-draft.
Detroit Lions Draft Scouting Report on Carradine:
• Hips have some flexibility as pass rusher
• Lacks fluidity overall, movements very deliberate
• Top end speed and burst to close leave something to be desired
• More effective in open field than expected
• Plays with wide base and exceptional balance, aids change of direction skills
• High motor leads to high production rate in tackles/sacks/hurries
• Very disciplined eyes, finds football quickly
• Football IQ and scheme understanding high for player with limited starting experience
• Use of quality pass rush moves inconsistent, reliant on a sublime swim move though
• Very strong bullrush with low pad level, needs to incorporate it more
• Likes to slow-play his pass rushes, wait for QB’s who hold the ball to show their hand
• Lacks significant burst off the snap, sometimes a half second slow
• Superior strength in speed rushes, tough to wedge off of his pass rush arc
• Non-stop nose for the football, never quits on rushes
• Disengage limited by hand usage at times, relies heavily on raw strength
• Leverages ball from outside to inside with consistency
• Always keeps outside shoulder free and sets a hard edge
• High tackle rate, sheds and closes on ball quickly, chases down plays
• Exposes too much of his chest at times as a pass rusher, hand usage raw
• Hands violent with a heavy first punch if he can place it properly
• Suitable pad level
If Tank is taken outside of the first round, some team is getting a helluva steal. Carradine was going to be competing with teammate Bjoern Werner (a top 5 pick) to be the first pass rusher taken in the draft. I doubt he goes in the first round, and probably goes in the 2nd or early 3rd round. If he's there at #58 I'd love for Denver to get him. You can never have enough pass rushers. He is coming off an ACL injury and it's hard to predict if he's going to be the same player after that injury. So his medicals are going to be a big in the coming months. There's rumors out there that he'd like to workout for teams in April, but that seems doubtful. He'll be an interesting player to keep an eye on.