The Green Bay Packers select UCLA DT Kenny Clark with the No. 27 pick in the 2016 NFL draft.
This isn't a sexy pick, given Clark's relative inability to rush the passer, but Clark is an instant wall for a defensive line in need of stability. At 6' 3" and 314 pounds, he can play 3-tech in a four-man front, or kick out to end in a 3–4 base. He's also a natural nose tackle with tremendous strength, and he's only 20 years old, so he's got a lot of great football in front of him. He may be a two-down rotational guy to start his NFL career, with the opportunity to do a lot more.
Strengths: Leverage monster who can win against blockers from multiple positions: one-tech, three-tech, occasional end and off the line in a flex position. Comes off the snap aggressively with a low center of gravity and bad intentions. Very tough to deal with early in the down. Has the aggressive instincts to sift through trash and get to the ballcarrier, and he’s very good at slipping off blocks to make tackles in short spaces. Will occasionally just wreck inside protection with a fearsome bull rush. Quick and violent wrap tackler. A student of the game with an excellent sense for advanced blocking concepts. Soaks up double teams through consistent engagement. Athletic enough to flare out and help deal with sweeps and screens. NFL-ready player with tons of advanced schematic experience.
Weaknesses: Average-sized athlete for the position. Short arms limit his ability to punch and strike, and he doesn’t have the hand moves to make up for that yet. Balance tends to slip through extended blocks, reducing his extended power. Doesn’t do enough against double teams and in goal-line situations to allay fears about his functional strength as a nose tackle. Gets stopped and set back too easily against blockers who have the leverage advantage. Needs that first-step head start to win power battles. Most of his sacks came against inferior offensive lines (Washington State, Cal), and he gets most of his pressure through power and leverage—any pass-rush moves are negligible. Needs to be more decisive when making his move off his blockers; he wrestles too much and doesn’t disengage enough.