Corbin Smith

Seahawks Draft Central- Kony Ealy, DE Missouri

Created on Apr. 20, 2014 10:37 PM EST



2013 STATS: 37 TKL, 7.0 SACKS, 1 INT

STRENGTHS: Ealy plays much faster than his size would suggest, and his athleticism allows him to both blow by tackles and also occasionally knock them back onto their heels. Exhibits outstanding pass rushing techniques and has one of the best swim moves for any defender in this draft class. While a solid pass rusher, he's at his best against the run, as his thick frame allows him to wart off blockers and land big hits on ball carriers. He's the kind of defensive lineman that NFL teams covet because of his ability to play both end and tackle. His versatility makes him a valuable asset because he can stuff the run as a defensive end and be moved inside to tackle during pass rushing situations. He's also improved when asked to drop back in coverage, though he's best on the line.

WEAKNESSES: From a scheme standpoint, Ealy doesn't seem to be a good fit for teams that would try to move him to a 3-4 outside linebacker. He's only an average athlete and ran a 4.92 40 yard dash at the combine, suggesting he'd be most useful in the trenches. At times, he can be pushed around and needs to show more physicality on a regular basis. A powerful, aggressive tackle can have his way with Ealy if he gains leverage early, as he has a tendency to give up on a play quicker than expected. Technique wise, Ealy has a nice combination of moves, but he has had issues with staying low out of his stance and keeping a solid base as he engages with his opponent.

WHERE HE FITS: Ealy is a steady defensive end who would be a great fit with the Seahawks because of his versatility. He's endured some tough times growing up and has battled through adversity to reach this point, and he'll play hard for whoever drafts him. Head coach Pete Carroll would love to have the opportunity to develop him both as an end and a pass-rushing tackle in the mold of current Seahawk Michael Bennett. Defensive line isn't an immediate area of need, but losing Chris Clemons and failing to sign Jared Allen have left depth somewhat shaky. If Seattle can't land one of the top receivers on its draft board and they choose to look at another position, Ealy wouldn't be a stretch at pick #32.

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