Ohio State’s Chase Young is not only the best edge rusher in the 2020 NFL Draft, he’s the best player period. Quarterbacks should be afraid.
When fans look back at the 2020 NFL Draft they’ll wonder how Chase Young didn’t go first overall. Young doesn’t have a ceiling on his potential. He could step onto an NFL field and be one of the best edge rushers in the NFL from day one.
With NFL experience and coaching, Young only stands to get better. He has the potential to be one of the best edge rushers of his generation. He has Hall-of-Fame potential and from a talent standpoint, he seems bust proof, making him the safest prospect in the draft.
If the Washington Redskins stay at second overall the rest of the NFC East should be afraid. Chase Young would likely become the best edge rusher in the division from day one. The latest odds to draft Chase Young heavily favor the Redskins at -375 per DraftKings Sportsbook.
Chase Young came to the Buckeyes as one of the top recruits in the country. Young was the seventh-best player in his recruiting class and the second-best edge rusher. Expectations were high when he arrived on campus and he didn’t disappoint.
Young earned a situational pass rusher role his true freshman year. He appeared in nine games tallying 3.5 sacks and five tackles for loss.
By his sophomore year, Young had earned a starting role on a stacked Ohio State defense. Young exploded onto the scene with 10.5 sacks and 14.5 tackles for loss. Even more impressive is that 9.5 of his sacks came against Big-10 opponents. The lone exception being a sack against No. 13 Washington.
That performance put Young on the board as an elite prospect. He was expected to be one of, if not the best prospect in the 2020 draft after his breakout 2018. Young blew even those expectations out of the water.
He put up a staggering 16.5 sacks and 21 tackles for loss in his junior year. He added seven forced fumbles for good measure. He cemented himself as an elite college talent and the best prospect in the 2020 NFL Draft with that outstanding performance to wrap up his college career.
It’s hard to pinpoint how athletic Young really is after he skipped the combine, but that shouldn’t affect his draft stock at all. It’s clear from his play on the field that Young is a smooth athlete.
He isn’t the most explosive speed rusher, but he has enough speed to make it a weapon. His strength isn’t elite, but his ability to turn his speed into power makes his bull rush a weapon. He’s bendy and his hips are fluid.
Young isn’t a super athlete at the position, but his athleticism isn’t going to be a liability.
Chase Young’s greatest strength is his technique, which is the best in the draft. His ability to win with hand fights, counter moves, or primary pass rush moves is incredible. He can beat an offensive tackle with any move in the book. Given his wide arsenal, it makes it incredibly difficult for a tackle to be able to anticipate how he’ll be attacked on any given play. That gives Young an immediate advantage on every snap.
His ability to turn his athleticism into a strong pass rush is exceptional. He knows exactly how to get the most out of himself. His bendy body and his ability to beat edge rushers off the edge or inside combine to make an unstoppable rusher at times.
His football IQ is out of this world. He understands how to beat offensive tackles, when to use stunts, and his play recognition is on another level. It’s rare to find a situation where an offense has put Young at a disadvantage because he always seems to be one step ahead of them.
Young only has one real weakness. He doesn’t have a ton of experience as a stand-up rusher and he’s struggled a bit when asked to fill that role. His lack of straight-line speed and dominant athletic pass rush moves plays a role in that. However, given time and experience, he shouldn’t have any issue developing a stand-up game.
If a team is looking for immediate productions from Young, they’ll stick him on the line as a 4-3 defensive end. that’s the role that suits him best similar to former teammate and second pick in the 2019 NFL Draft, Nick Bosa.
He’s too valuable as a pass rusher to throw on the extra responsibility a stand-up rusher has to fill. It just complicates what should be a simple assignment for the best pass rusher in the draft, get to the quarterback.