2015 NFL Draft Rankings: Defensive Tackle

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Russ Isabella-USA TODAY Sports

The 2015 NFL season is officially over, so it’s time to ramp up the NFL draft coverage here at BGO. I will be ranking the top draft prospects and at every position over the next few months as well as updating my mock drafts every couple weeks. If you have any issues with my rankings, feel free to let me know in the comments or on Twitter.

2015 Defensive Tackle Rankings:

1.) Leonard Williams, USC (6’5 | 300 | 4.88)

Scouting report – Could be the first non-QB drafted this year. Williams is a beast with ridiculous athleticism for a man his size. He is versatile enough to play at pretty much any D-line position in any scheme. Williams has the power to bull rush, but also the quickness and agility to win battles with speed. At times Williams was unblockable, but sometimes appears to take plays off. He’s as close to a can’t miss prospect as I’ve seen in awhile and should make an instant impact in the NFL.

Projection: Top 5

2.) Danny Shelton, Washington (6’2 | 339 | 5.16)

Scouting report – The best NT prospect in the country in my opinion. Shelton is a beast inside with a quick first step, consistently low pad level, and the strength to hold the point of attack against double teams. Coming into 2014 Shelton was considered primarily a run stopper, but the 339 pounder had 9 sacks as a senior and an even more impressive 88 total tackles. His quickness gets him in the backfield, but his motor in pursuit and surprising closing speed has resulted in career high sack and tackle totals. Shelton also blocked 3 kicks this year on special teams. He can do it all as a 3-4 NT. Shelton was the most dominant D-lineman at the Senior Bowl and I would be shocked if he falls out of the 1st round.

Projection: 1st round

3.) Eddie Goldman, Florida St (6’3 | 320 | 5.28)

Scouting report – At times Goldman looked like the best defensive tackle in college football, but his performance was inconsistent. At his best he is a scheme versatile player who is strong enough to shut down the run inside and quick enough to generate pressure as a DT or a 5-tech end. Goldman has the potential to dominate in multiple roles, he just needs to improve his motor and be more consistent with his technique. Watch the 4 quarter & overtime of the Clemson game to get an idea of what Goldman can do when motivated.

Projection: 1st round

4.) Malcolm Brown, Texas (6’4 | 320 | 5.30)

Scouting report – Has the size, speed and natural athleticism to excel at the next level. Brown showed flashes of dominance last season with 6.5 sacks, 2 forced fumbles, and 13 tackles for loss. When motivated Brown beat blockers with ease using a potent combo of power and speed. All the tools are there but Brown needs to be more consistent, improve his technique and develop a go-to pass rush move.

Projection: 1st round