Devonte Wyatt might wind up the top interior defensive lineman from this NFL draft class. Find out why here.
Devonte Wyatt – 6′ 3″, 307 – Senior(RS), IDL, Georgia
Devonte Wyatt is a ridiculous athlete and one of the top interior defensive linemen in the 2022 NFL Draft class. He’s recorded just 5 sacks but was able to pressure the quarterback 78 times over the last three seasons for roughly a 10% pressure rate.
What I Like
+ Short-area burst/athleticism
+ Long Speed
+ Pass-rush Potential
+ Disruption Against the Run
+ Ball Tracking/ Pursuit
Devonte Wyatt has one of the most ridiculous first steps you’ll find for an interior defensive lineman. He gets to the spot in a hurry and can easily cross the face of the blocker across from him. He beats blockers quickly and has the potential to disrupt any run play. Wyatt is a tough defender to run away from.
Late night Bengals thoughts:
If they’re sitting at #31 and draft night and Devonte Wyatt is sitting on the board, he’s gonna be hard not to take.
Wyatt is the explosive 3T that can make their pass rush an unstoppable force. pic.twitter.com/v9LnntYsPf
— Willie Lutz (@willie_lutz) February 21, 2022
His short-area movement skills allow him to change direction quickly. He has the athleticism to string plays out to the 12th defender and make plays from behind. It helps that he has great vision and a sense of play development. Wyatt is probably the most disruptive interior defender in the 2022 NFL Draft.
That translates to his pass-rush ability as well. While Wyatt has room to grow in this department, he has the potential to be one of the top interior pass rushers in the league.
2022 #FFIDP PROSPECT:
DEVONTE WYATT, DEFENSIVE INTERIOR, GEORGIA
2021 FBS DI ranks, per @PFF:
Overall grade: 89.8 (2nd)
Pass-rush grade: 84.0 (T-12th)
Total pressures: 26 (T-39th)
Sacks: 4 (T-52nd)
Pass-rush win-rate: 13.1% (T-50th)
Run defense grade: 81.9 (T-11th) pic.twitter.com/lHxX56CSqo
— Jon Macri (@PFF_Macri) February 24, 2022
He needs some fine-tuning but Wyatt can bend the corner as well as any interior defender in the league. He has the foot-quickness and flexibility to rush the passer off the edge when called upon, which is ridiculous for a 300+ lb defender.
Devonte Wyatt’s athleticism sets him apart from not only his competition in the 2022 NFL Draft class, but also the rest of the NFL. Still, there’s plenty for him to improve on.
What I Haven’t Seen Yet
– Anchor/ Practical Strength
– Arm Length
– Pass Rush Repertoire
While Wyatt has been a disruptive run-defender, he’s struggled at times to maintain his gap integrity. He can be driven off the spot in one-on-ones even when he wins the leverage battle. He can keep his feet driving upon contact but doesn’t always have the upper body strength to continue to push through that contact.
Wyatt rarely sees a double coming when he’s already wrapped up with another blocker, which helps the blockers take him out of the play entirely. He has a tendency to take himself out of the play when he’s caught by off-shoulder blockers. He’s also easily beaten by pulls and misdirection.
The only natural potentially keeping Wyatt from becoming an All-Pro interior pass-rusher is a lack of elite length. He’s got a short wingspan of just 78 inches.
He also needs to expand his pass-rush repertoire. While he’s been successful rushing the passer in a stunt-heavy defense, he’s been reliant on his natural athleticism. He’s shown a productive bull-rush, a mean chop/rip, and an explosive spin move, but Wyatt is quick to sit an watch. He seems to know when he’s lost the rep.
It’s hard to find a comp for a 300+ defensive lineman that runs a sub-5 40-yard dash. But Fletcher Cox is one of those guys. It’s a high bar for sure but Wyatt is capable of becoming that type of player. Like Cox, Wyatt will enter the league as a versatile every-down defender, capable of aligning almost anywhere.
Devonte Wyatt has potential first-round value and could easily be the first interior defensive lineman selected in the 2022 NFL Draft.
NFL Comp: Fletcher Cox
Role: Every-down Defender
Grade: Potential 1st-rounder