Prospect: DE Neto Okpala
Status: SI All-American Candidate
Vitals: 6-foot-3, 200 pounds
School: Loganville (Ga.) Loganville High School
Committed to: Boston College
Frame: Big shoulders and long arms with good definition. Athletic torso. Fair bubble with big thighs and strong calves.
Athleticism: Has posted an 11.2 100-meter dash and also wrestles. Attack-style edge presence with good all-around athleticism. Shows good linear explosiveness at the snap with good pop at the point to set the edge versus run both against TEs and OTs. Can get clean quickly and finish with solid short-area quickness. Can force his will to clear hips through entry points as a pass-rusher and has decent cornering ability to ball.
Instincts: Fair mesh-point vision. Has the ability to reduce his gap at the snap and slip inside. Can get pads perpendicular and hunt down line. Flashes some awareness to recognize over-sets and tall-sets and alter his pass-rush track or increase his leverage to work underneath the opponent’s pads. Is alert to get his mitts into throwing lanes while squeezing to the passer.
Polish: Works as a Buck-type both in 2 and 3-point stance on both the strong and weak sides. Rush arsenal is based off his speed rush, where he works in a rip and can convert to power. Flashes a chop-and-spin. He needs to continue expanding while adding to his toolbox. Can improve his fluidity in his hips through his lower half.
Bottom Line: Okpala is still fairly limited in his experience on the football field, but the multi-sport athlete shows promising tools. He has good snap quickness, strength and shows a good pass-rush canvas to be developed. Okpala is best suited as a Jack/Rush or Buck outside linebacker/Edge position for the college level.