NFL Draft Prospect Spotlight: Joseph Ossai

Texas Longhorn Joseph Ossai brings strong pass-rushing numbers to the NFL Draft at a position of need for the Las Vegas Raiders
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As we get closer and closer to the 2021 NFL Draft, there will be a number of players who will be moving up and down draft boards.

One player who has the potential to move up is former Texas defensive end Joseph Ossai.

A hybrid edge/off-ball linebacker before becoming a defensive end full-time in 2020, the change coincided with Ossai’s best season.

In only nine games, Ossai set career highs with 5.5 sacks and 15.5 tackles for losses.

It’s the second consecutive year that he’s finished with at least five sacks and 13 or more tackles for losses.

Despite posting similar numbers in 2019 though, Ossai was much more highly rated in 2020.

Pro Football Focus (PFF) had him as the 37th best edge defender in college football last season.

Pass rushing certainly had a lot to do with that, as along with his 5.5 sacks, Ossai racked up 33 quarterback pressures.

At 6-4 and 253 pounds, he’s able to bring the kind of bend off the edge that teams want in pass rushers.

Ossai also can bring it against the run, having made a career-high 90 tackles in 2019.

He’s highly regarded for what scouts say is a very high motor and a mindset to never give up on the play.

However, Ossai is not regarded as being one of the best athletes at his position in the draft.

Scouts also project he will need to add more functional strength to better go against NFL caliber tackles.

Those are the flaws that have Ossai currently in the Day Two range for when he could be drafted.

The work ethic is there to improve, and a team like the Raiders are checking everyone out.

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