NFL Draft Prospect Spotlight: Daviyon Nixon

Iowa Hawkeye Daviyon Nixon has been projected everywhere from the first round to Day 3 of the NFL Draft and fits a Las Vegas Raiders need.
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There are prospects who emerge every year that can tantalize teams with their potential but don’t offer the same inconsistency.

Former Iowa defensive tackle Daviyon Nixon could be put into that category as a prospect.

Starting his career at the junior college level, Nixon initially played for Iowa Western Community College in 2017.

After a successful season, he enrolled with the Hawkeyes in 2018, redshirting the 2018 season.

Nixon earned time as a rotational player in 2019, collecting three sacks and 29 total tackles.

He entered 2020 as a starter and put himself in the conversation for best interior defensive line prospect with his play.

In eight games, Nixon racked up 5.5 sacks, 13.5 tackles for losses, and had a 71-yard pick-6 against Penn State.

Those 13.5 tackles for losses led the Big Ten, while his 5.5 sacks were second in the conference. Those numbers earned him consensus All-American status and he was voted the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year.

Regarded by ESPN’s Mel Kiper as the top defensive tackle in the 2021 Draft, Nixon is considered to be a standout athlete.

Scouts rate his feet quickness as special, and also that he can bring a violent disposition to the field.

The problem is that that violence didn’t manifest itself consistently, as scouts say Nixon’s play can run very hot and cold.

Nixon also is not considered a great block-shedder, which coming into the NFL could be a significant problem.

Teams will have to examine all of Nixon’s resume and decide if they can bring out the flash plays he showed consistently or if he’s just a hit-and-miss player.

For a team like the Las Vegas Raiders, they obviously need more blue-chip-level talent on their defensive line.

If Nixon is there on Day 2 or even at the start of Day 3, his potential might be too much to pass up.

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