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NFL Draft: Jaguars looking for a LEO pass rusher

The last two offseasons we looked at benchmarks to identify possible LEOs for the Jacksonville Jaguars. How does it shake out for the 2015 group?

Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

Once again in the NFL Draft it appears that the Jacksonville Jaguars will be looking for a LEO edge rusher. The team hasn't really been able to find one yet, using some patchwork players like Chris Clemons and Jason Babin in that spot, but with the No. 3 overall pick it's looking likely they could use that to finally pick the long term solution there.

The past two offseason's I've presented some benchmarks to look for in a LEO edge rusher, at least in terms of athleticism. You can view the 2013 benchmarks here and the 2014 benchmarks here, and for the most part they were pretty accurate.

The player will need to have arms measuring at least 33 inches, preferably longer. The player will need to run at least a 1.6 in the 10-yard split in the 40-yard dash, preferably lower. The player will also need to clock a sub 7.1 and a sub 4.4 in the 3-cone and shuttle drills, respectively. Last season I included vertical jump and broad jump into the mix, because those are usually measures of explosion. I debated upping the vertical from 32" to 34", but decided against it.

Here are the results for the benchmarks in 2015:


The only player to hit all the marks is Virginia OLB/DE Eli Harold, who raised a lot of eyebrows at the combine. He was a productive pass rusher in the ACC, but he certainly appears to be someone who would fit that LEO mold, though he's projected to go in the late first to early second round.

Some players I didn't include because they didn't run at the combine and some players did do all of the drills (Randy Gregory and Bud Dupree), but I have a feeling those two probably would have hit their marks. It's also worth noting that Vic Beasley missed hitting all the marks by half an inch with his arm length, so I'd consider that irrelevant.

The two most interesting players to me however are Miami's Anthony Chickallo and NDSU's Kyle Emanuel. Chickallo was used oddly at Miami, to put it nicely, often playing the role of a five-technique. He showed flashes as a pass rusher and was highly touted as a recruit, but it didn't appear as if Miami really "unleashed him" at all. On the flip side, Emanuel was a sack machine for NDSU with nearly 20 sacks last season and he caught a lot of people's eyes with how fluid he appeared doing linebacker drills.