2015 NFL Draft: Bengals’ Late Round Defensive Tackle Options

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September 20, 2014; Fresno, CA, USA; Fresno State Bulldogs defensive lineman Tyeler Davison (92) sacks Southern Utah Thunderbirds quarterback

Ammon Olsen

(2) during the first half at Bulldog Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

DT Tyeler Davison, Fresno State

The big man out of Fresno State presents a formidable threat to offensive lines.  At 6’2″, Tyeler Davison has an advantage similar to that of Bengals defensive tackle Geno Atkins.  Being shorter is sometimes seen as a disadvantage, but in Davison’s case (like Atkins’), it allows him to gain a natural leverage advantage rather than having to focus on staying so low, as is the case for the 6’8″ Margus Hunt when playing lining up at defensive tackle.  And at 316 pounds, Davison has the appropriate weight and stocky build that suggests success at the position.

When watching Davison play, he has the desire to be successful at tackle, though it is concerning that Lance Zierlein notes that Davison may not have given as much effort when lining up at defensive end.  This can’t help but beg the question if Davison is intractable.  The Bengals enjoy versatility, and though he won’t be asked to line up on the outside, does he have the desire to learn and increase his versatility within roles (if in fact this observation by Zierlein is true).

As a presumed later round selection though, speculation such as this shouldn’t mean much.  Even if it’s true, later round selections are often made with the “low risk, high reward” approach.  Davison has the frame and ability to be a quality NFL one-technique tackle.  More than this, his should be highly amplified by his high snap count: Zierlein notes Davison played on 80% of snaps, which is incredible for a defensive tackle and man of his size.  Any player with this combination of size and conditioning should be highly desirable.  It’s this man’s opinion that the Bengals may do well to even draft Davison a round early to secure his acquisition and hopefully capitalize on his promise in the future.

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