As we inch closer to April 23, mock draft projections become increasingly more concrete. One thing that hasn’t moved is the stock of former Ohio State Buckeye Chase Young. Young plays the coveted NFL position of edge rusher. Beyond playing a position teams build defenses around, he is a good one.
Scouting reports refer to him as a game wrecker. Here’s our overall impression of the player who at one time was projected to go first in this year’s draft. That is, until a former Buckeye teammate took the country by storm.
Overall Impression of Chase Young
The best way to describe Chase Young is that he’s a player that keeps offensive coordinators in the film room working overtime. He has a skill set that makes it very difficult to formulate a blocking scheme.
Young has experience against double team strategies and has been able to still create havoc. Havoc is a key to his game. This is the type of player that can make an average defense suddenly very good.
Unless the Washington Redskins suddenly ignore the obvious talent Young brings onto the field, they will select him with the second pick. As a polished pass rusher with the strength and agility to play at the next level, Young will make an instant impact towards improving the Redskins’ defense.
- Chase Young is one of those coveted defensive players with what is called a high-intensity motor. He seems to recharge his energy and tenacity with every huddle. Certainly, the training room regimen he follows helps to develop his endurance, but he still has both a physical and mental motor that runs on high.
- His lower body strength may need improved to help develop stronger run skills. However, his upper body power is outstanding. Young has both the power and technique to shed blockers. This not only means he is present to make the tackle, to clear space teams may have to dedicate a double-team situation.
- That lead to yet another strength in Chase Young’s game. Being possible the best linemen in college football means teams are going to game-plan for you. On a vast majority of the opposition’s offensive snaps, Young had to handle a double-team. He has a lot of experience in this key part of NFL blocking strategies.
- Even though Young is an adequate run defender from the edge, he showed an unhealthy tendency to bite on fakes. Nearly every play that came in his direction, where he wasn’t a factor, he lost a step by misreading or being taken in by play action.
- Despite having excellent upper body strength, Young had difficulty at times, gaining leverage against downhill running plays. This could be due to a misread at the initial snap. If he exploded off the ball thinking it was a pass play, Young had a difficult time regaining control of the line of scrimmage to defend a run right at him.
NFL Comparison for Chase Young
Young has been compared to a handful of NFL pass rushers. The first name that has been mentioned is the Cleveland Browns Miles Garrett. Like Garrett, teams must develop a game-plan to deal with his presence on the field.
His upper body strength and non-stop on-the-field motor have been likened to Jadeveon Clowney. Both Clowney and Garrett were number one picks from their respective NFL draft classes.
Young himself has a player he says he likes to model his game after. If he turns out to make the same impact as Julius Peppers did during his NFL career, this could be the most noteworthy comparison of all.
Best Team Fit for Chase Young
One key off-season development might have changed this discussion more than any other. When the Washington Redskins hired Ron Rivera, just about any strong defensive player would become a good fit in the Redskins scheme. Washington has a respectable core defense.
Rivera had tremendous success with his Carolina Panther defenses. He played linebacker in the Buddy Ryan era and obviously has the hands-on experience to get the most out of Chase Young. Washington may not be an immediate playoff contender, but it’s a tremendous fit for the former Buckeye defender.
Worst Team Fit for Chase Young
There has been some rumor that the New York Giants might be trying to manipulate the draft order to grab Young. We don’t think he would actually play poorly in the New York defensive scheme, but the Giants have multiple holes to fill on defense beyond the edge. The Giants finished 20th worst against the run, something that Young would not provide immediate help.
They were even worse against the pass, primarily because of poor coverage in the secondary. No matter how good an edge rusher is, he can’t defend the whole field. Playing in New York under the current circumstances might be the worst fit for Chase Young out of the teams that could maneuver to draft him.
Chase Young Skills Rating
- Strength – Young is a physical specimen. He is both big and fast. Young’s upper body strength was consistently displayed as he manhandled offensive linemen trying to stop his attack. What he lacked in polish as a pass rusher, he made up for with brute physical strength.
Score – 9.0
- Speed – Young’s 40-yard time was posted at 4.94 as a college recruit out of DeMatha Catholic High School. He has grown not only a lot bigger and stronger during his time in Columbus, but he has also gotten a lot faster. Young’s status as the top defensive prospect made skipping the NFL Combine a clear option.
So, there isn’t a viral video of him racing 40 yards under the watchful eye of a stopwatch. One unknown about Young is his actual speed. However, edge rushers are graded more closely on quickness off the ball and agility. Young is not going to be the fastest player on the track, but his speed is more than adequate for the position he plays.
Score – 8
- Athleticism – This may be his strongest skill rating after his strength. His power is mostly in his upper body, but he is physically balanced. It is hard to knock Young off his feet, a tremendous asset for a pass rusher. He changes direction on a dime and pursues with a vicious tenacity. His athleticism is a key reason he will be the second player taken in April.
Score – 9.5
- Run Defense – This is the one part of Young’s game where he has not been able to move the needle in a more positive direction. Now, we have to figure that in many Ohio State games; the Buckeyes had leads that forced teams to pass the ball on most downs. For that reason, the sample size of his run abilities may be small. However, Young is still seen to be a player who needs to develop his run stopping skills.
Score – 8.0
Unless some team throws a huge monkey wrench into the current draft order, Cincinnati should be waiting with a jersey as soon as their clock starts. It shouldn’t take the Washington Redskins any more time to bring a jersey to the podium with the last name Young on the back.
Young is going to have a learning curve headed into the next level of football. However, using film and stats as evidence, he will bring monumental changes to the way the Redskins play defense.