Hometown: Antioch, CA
High School: De La Salle
Notre Dame Fighting Irish
An excellent athlete with a strong run defense base and a promising future as a pass rusher, Isaiah Foskey’s limited bend and underdeveloped pass rush arsenal will hurt his ability to make an early impact in the NFL. That said, his exciting burst and power give him an excellent ceiling.
Notre Dame’s defense has boasted various high-level NFL Draft prospects in recent years. One of the team’s premier players as the 2022 season approaches is Isaiah Foskey. The school-listed 6050 and 260-pound 3-4 outside linebacker is a versatile, exciting athlete. He spends a somewhat high percentage of snaps off-ball in run defense and coverage. He is respectable in man against tight ends and even running backs. Foskey is an explosive, clean unidirectional mover with good range at the first level. His soft change of direction is solid. In run defense, the California native tracks the ball carrier through engagement and has the athleticism to work to the opponent through contact. He disengages from or sheds blocks efficiently. He is extremely quick to close as a tackler against ball carriers in the box. As a pass rusher, Foskey has sufficient bend to threaten the outside track. Further, he exhibits an impressive first step to gain ground on offensive tackles and enough change of direction ability to corner through half-man - especially if he wins early with his first step and hands. What’s more, Foskey flashes the ability to fight hands with a swipe or a chop move to keep opponents off his frame. If he reaches an offensive lineman’s chest, he has above-average power to put them off balance and drive them. He can win up all three tracks (outside, middle, inside) thanks to his well-rounded athleticism. All the same, Foskey is an unrefined player who needs to advance his game to find consistent success in the NFL. The Notre Dame pass rusher primarily tries to out-athlete his opponents. He leads with his shoulder into engagement, lacks a pass rush plan, and seemingly has a limited arsenal beyond a stab-cross chop. He employs his hands too late as a speed rusher and does not threaten the outside track enough to keep linemen guessing. Foskey also plays with a high pad level too often and allows blockers to stifle him if they land their hands first. In run defense, he fails to reliably read the mesh point and can be put on his heels if he plays high. He presses the line early from off-ball alignments and cannot stick with breaking routes in coverage. Foskey’s stiff frame limits his sharp change of direction and hurts his pass-rush potential. He projects as an immediate-impact run defending backup with elite, well-rounded potential.
Isaiah Foskey has been a key piece for the Fighting Irish ever since his freshman year in 2019 where he played in four games and later in his career, saw action on the biggest stage of College Football, in the College Football Playoff against Alabama during his sophomore season in 2021. From Antioch, California, Foskey was named First Team All Bay Area and First Team All East Bay during his high school career. In 2018, Foskey also helped his team win the North Coast Section Open Division championship. In 2022, Isaiah Foskey will be a major factor for Notre Dame.