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CONTENT

Post Draft Analysis
Youtube Highlights
ESPN Insider Draft Analysis (paid subscription)
NFL.COM Draft Analysis
NFL Draft Bible Analysis (paid subscription)
Pro Football Focus Draft Analysis (paid subscription)
Gridiron Draft Guide (Simon Clancy) (paid subscription)
Pro Football Network (Tony Pauline) Analysis
The 33rd Team (Ireland et al.) Analysis

 

 

POST DRAFT ANALYSIS

Charley Casserly (former Washington and Houston GM):
I’ve seen him cover wide receivers. I’ve seen him cover running backs and I’ve seen him cover tight ends and he hits people. They want a guy in Miami’s defense to match up all across the field. You can’t find safeties that can cover. This guy’s a steal in the second round.

Ryan Smith (Pro Football Focus):
In 2018, Holland had 382 coverage snaps, all at safety, and allowed only 26 completions in 43 targets for 325 yards, two touchdowns and five interceptions. That’s a 59.9 passer rating against, which is extraordinary. In 2019, he had 539 coverage snaps, all at cornerback, and allowed 45 receptions in 72 targets for 487 yards, two touchdowns and four interceptions That’s a 68.5 passer rating against. Most of those cornerback snaps came with Holland in the slot; he played only 18 snaps at outside corner, with one target. Holland’s nine interceptions over 2018 and 2019 were fourth-most in college football, and he broke up 10 other passes, while committing only one penalty over those two seasons. He opted out of last season.

 

 

 

 

 

Pre-Draft Analysis
Holland is a well-built and instinctive safety at his best lining up over the slot where he has the balance, upper-body strength and speed to compete with receivers and tight ends. He played receiver in high school, and he's a playmaker with excellent ball skills. He averaged 15.3 yards per punt return in 2019, and he's a sound tackler with the potential to develop into an excellent special teams player. -- Steve Muench


Post-Draft Analysis
Holland is a perfect fit in Dolphins coach Brian Flores' defense. He has versatility and can play deep safety and man-to-man out of the slot. Holland played 64% of his coverage snaps in the slot at Oregon. Holland is a playmaker with nine interceptions over two seasons, which should help the Dolphins be better covering sideline to sideline and tackling speedy receivers. Miami allowed 6.2 yards after catch per reception last season, easily the worst in the NFL (next closest were the Chiefs at 5.8). -- Cameron Wolfe

 

Player Bio

Despite starting just two of 13 contests as a true freshman, Holland tied for 10th in the FBS with five interceptions. He also recorded 44 tackles and six pass breakups for the Ducks. He continued to play well as a sophomore, garnering honorable mention All-Pac-12 honors by posting 66 tackles, four interceptions (one returned for a score) and four pass breakups on the year. Holland opted out of the 2020 season. The four-star recruit and 2017 San Francisco Chronicle East Bay Player of the Year (five interceptions, 1,012 receiving yards, five punt return touchdowns) was coached by former NFL back Napoleon Kaufman at Bishop O'Dowd High School. Holland's father, Robert, played football at Sacramento State and then had a long career in the Canadian Football League. -- by Chad Reuter

Analysis

  • Draft Projection - Round 2-3
  • NFL Comparison - Jordan Poyer

Overview

Versatile defensive back with good size, above-average instincts and impressive ball skills. Holland plays with good pattern recognition and anticipation underneath. He has the ball greed and competitiveness to make contested catches a challenge for opponents. He's willing and able in run support near the line of scrimmage, giving him value as a big nickel, but he lacks recovery burst and will struggle if he's matched one-on-one with speed from the slot. He has the football IQ and ball skills to handle split-safety duties but needs to continue fine-tuning his tackling technique. His added value as a punt returner should push him up the board a few spots.

Strengths

  • Looks, feels and moves like a pro player.
  • Versatility to move around in the secondary.
  • Proper eye balance between quarterback and route traffic from zone.
  • Adequate route-break anticipation from off-man.
  • Looks to smother and find entry point to play the throw at the top of the route.
  • Timing to open and sprint into phase with receiver.
  • High school receiver with excellent ball skills and competes hard for the football.
  • Tools for continued ball production on the next level.
  • Consistent punch and separates from perimeter blocks.
  • Flies into developing run lanes to greet runners near the line.
  • Makes centered, aggressive strikes as downhill tackler.
  • Flashed impressive punt return talent.

Weaknesses

  • Scouts have some concerns about long speed.
  • Loses coverage effectiveness as route progresses downfield.
  • Had trouble catching up once he got behind in man coverage.
  • Gets caught flat-footed at times.
  • A little labored transitioning from his pedal.
  • Average range as sideline-to-sideline tackler.
  • Needs to be quicker coming to balance and getting tackle-ready.
  • In 2019, pushed around at point of attack by Washington tight end Cade Otton.

 

JEVON HOLLAND | Oregon | SS | #8 | Jr | 6006 | 200 | Pleasanton, CA | Bishop O’Dowd

OVERVIEW:
Working predominantly from the nickel cornerback position during his Ducks career, Holland was a turnover machine for the team during his two years as a contributor, highlighted by his nine career interceptions. Even after opting out of the 2020 season to declare for the 2021 draft, Holland sits as one of the more accomplished defensive backs in the entire class. Holland is a well put together defender who has a strong safety look to him playing near the line of scrimmage. His work in short-zone coverage rivals the best in the 2021 class, always seeming to be in the proper spot, leading to a wide array of plays made all over the field. Holland’s ball skills are fantastic, showing the ability to work in phase and disrupt the football at the catch point with high regularity. In the run game, Holland is a consistent wrap-up tackler, but is nothing close to a tone setter. An odd projection, Holland is rarely used in any role outside of a nickel cornerback. His zone awareness is fantastic, but Holland is an ordinary athlete who may lack the short-area quickness to mirror well enough in man coverage. Holland is also very foreign to working in deep-zone coverage, continuing to beg the question as to what the overall impact may be. Holland is a talented cerebral player who always seems to be around the ball. He has a clear impact in short-zone coverage, but might lack the physical profile to ever ascend as anything more than a solid starting option.

BACKGROUND:
Born in British Columbia, Canada, and raised in the Oakland, California, area since the age of eight. Honorable mention All-Pac-12 in 2019 in vote of league coaches. Four-star recruit. Opted out of the 2020 season to prepare for the draft. Father played football at Sacramento State, was on the San Francisco 49ers and played many years in CFL. High school head coach commented that he’s a better wideout than defensive back. Interesting and thoughtful personality. Very supportive of his teammates. Mature. Father instilled discipline and daily workouts his entire life and essentially forced football and the goal of playing the NFL on his son who embraced it.

CAREER:

 

Jevon Holland signed with the Ducks in December 2017 as a consensus four-star recruit and California’s No. 2 overall athlete. He was named the 2017 San Francisco East Bay Player of the Year following his senior season at Oakland’s Bishop O’Dowd High School.
Holland played defensive back and wide receiver (and returned punts) in high school, recording 1,012 receiving yards and 12 receiving touchdowns as a senior. He amassed over 100 tackles and 18 passes defensed on the defensive side of the ball over the course of his preps career. He fielded close to 20 total scholarship offers and picked Oregon over Notre Dame, UCLA and Washington, among others.

 

1. JEVON HOLLAND OREGON

SIZE: 6ft 1in, 200lbs
CLASS: Junior
THE SKINNY:
A safety/nickel hybrid, Holland has elite ball skills and instincts. Although he played almost exclusively as a slot at times, he has a safety’s brain and mindset and a fantastic ability to read the game.

DEEP DIVE:
He opted out of 2020 but there’s so much to like. What stands out more than anything are the ball skills and instincts from deep safety because they’re borderline elite. He’s a plus athlete with some twitch and some explosion, both as a safety or a nickel corner. From deep, he has excellent read-and-react ability and can follow a quarterback’s eyes and use his instincts and understanding of angles to get to the ball or the ball-carrier in a hurry. In space, he’s adept at getting off blocks to make tackles and he’s a very sure tackler and a form-hitter with an ability to constantly take men down in the open field. As a nickel, he tends to play off-man or zone and it’s clear that he organises that Ducks secondary pre-snap and has a real understanding of coverages. Holland has the ability to see plays as they unfold and peel off his man in coverage and run to make the play. At times he stops his feet a little in short-area coverages and he has a tendency to sometimes bite on a fake because he sees it develop, only to be suckered in – fake screens, for example. He can flip his hips and run and has good play strength to stay in the route, or to take down a ball-carrier. I would have liked to have seen him play as a pure free safety in 2020 and a lack of a true position might hurt him but he’s such a Swiss Army Knife that smart teams will really make use of him. For me, he’s best patrolling deep because he can get sideline to sideline, but can also come down into the box and thump. Holland also has some juice on special teams. He’s a first-round player who will probably be huge value in round two.

OFF FIELD:
Originally from Canada, his father played for the 49ers. He then went up to Canada and played for the BC Lions and the Edmonton Eskimos, and then coached in the CFL. Oregon HC Mario Cristobal says he’s actually a better WR than he is defensive back. A thinker off the field, he was very vocal around social injustice in the aftermath of the murder of George Floyd. Left the 2019 Colorado game with a left-leg injury that required a walking boot but didn’t miss any games.

 

JEVON HOLLAND - SAFETY

  • GRADE - 3.88
  • Weight: 195
  • School: Oregon
  • Year: Junior

CAREER SNAPSHOT:
After star performances on both sides of the ball in high school, Holland was recruited as a four-star athlete. Taking his talents to Oregon, Holland made an immediate impact as a fresh-man where he started two games, registering 42 tackles and an impressive 5 interceptions.
He followed that up in his sophomore season with 66 tackles, 4.5 tackles for loss, 4 intercep-tions, and a touchdown.
After being named a semifinalist for the Jim Thorpe Award and to the first-team All-Pac-12, Holland opted out of his junior season to pre-pare for the 2021 NFL Draft.

POSITIVES:
Explosive, athletic safety with a well-rounded game. Does an outstanding job with coverage assignments, tracks the pass in the air, and dis-plays a good move to the throw.
Follows receivers across the middle of the field, effectively times pass defenses, and possesses good hands for the interception.
Displays terrific ball skills, flips his hips in tran-sition, and gets his head back around to locate the pass in the air. Not a liability covering the slot receiver. Aggressive and battles receivers throughout the route.
Fires up the field, breaks down well, and gives effort defending the run and stop-ping screen passes.

NEGATIVES:
Possesses a thin frame and struggles in battles. Will be outmatched by bigger re-ceivers. Inconsistent bursting to the ball.

ANALYSIS:
Holland is a good athlete and a developing safety who would've benefited from another sea-son on the field in 2020. His ball skills and coverage ability are such that teams may consider him at cornerback or nickel back. Holland comes with a large upside but needs time to devel-op his game.

PFN'S BEST NFL FITS:
New Orleans Saints, Washington Football Team, Las Vegas Raiders

 

THE 33RD TEAM

BUILD
Good size with a light/slim frame, needs to put on weight. Gets manhandled by big bodied blockers at the POA, not enough on his frame to do anything about it. Only had 2 years in the weight room at Oregon, frame certainly has room to add more at the next level. Great length from the Slot Corner able to press and redirect routes at the LOS with his size and length. No injuries in his football career at Oregon, Opted out of the 2020 season body type may be different after a year of pouring into it.

MENTAL
Against the Run Holland is very intinctual with his angles and ability to sort through second level blockers. On the perimeter is able to disengage from blocks and finish in the screen and sweep game.

ATHLETICISM
Change of Direction is effortless, mirrors defenders from the LOS. Utilizes Play Strength against slot receivers to redirect and speed and explosiveness against TEs and bigger threats. Ability to Bend

TECHNICAL
Position versatility as both a Slot Corner and a High Safety, if he adds more weight he has the ability play in the Box as well. Hips are smooth and fluid but struggles to get out of the break with speed, slight hitch in the transition. One of the best man coverage threats in the Pac 12 against anyone from slots to TEs. Both from the Slot and High Safety able to be a factor in the run game, gets off blocks on the perimeter and navigates the junk in the middle very well for a leaner DB. Has 9 picks in 16 starts at Oregon, Bursts through the catch points with great make up speed and ability to fight for the ball in the air. Hollands style of play puts him in great positions to make plays on the football as well as in the run game.

SUMMARY
Holland should come in day one and immediately compete to be the Slot Corner or High Safety day one. Unique ability to offer true position versatility by being a moveable piece of the secondary,

CONTENT

Post Draft Analysis
Youtube Highlights
ESPN Insider Draft Analysis (paid subscription)
NFL.COM Draft Analysis
NFL Draft Bible Analysis (paid subscription)
Pro Football Focus Draft Analysis (paid subscription)
Gridiron Draft Guide (Simon Clancy) (paid subscription)
Pro Football Network (Tony Pauline) Analysis
The 33rd Team (Ireland et al.) Analysis

 

 

POST DRAFT ANALYSIS

Dan Jamroz (Phinfever)
I like the player, I like the 2020 production and he was probably the best edge rusher in this draft class. I do not like the pick at 18. Phillips medical history makes this selection more of a short term move and unlikely to be foundational talent who scares defenses for years to come. There was also a lot of commentary about how his film at UCLA was mediocre. He would have been an excellent value in Round 2. I'm sure as I type this I'll be looking back one year from now and eating some serious crow. He is versatile in that he can put his hand in the dirt and drop back when needed. I'm sure Brian Flores loved that factor. I believe he will often some serious benefit in 2021 but would have preferred someone like Kwity Paye if Miami was dead set on getting a 1st Round Edge.

Pete Prisco (CBS Sportts)
If his medical stays clean, it's a good pick. They address a need that had to be filled. He's loaded with talent.
Grade: B

Bucky Brooks (NFL.COM)
The Miami standout is a rare mix as a five-star athlete with refined technical skills. Phillips is a pure pass rusher with an array of moves that should enable him to win early and often as a double-digit sack artist in the NFL.

Pro Football Focus
Jaelan Phillips boasts the best production of any edge rusher in this class, and if medical concerns weren’t a factor, he could have come off the board much earlier. He recorded 42 quarterback pressures on 542 snaps last season for Miami but has already had to walk away from the game once due to concussion issues. As a result, he has less than 1,000 career college snaps to his name. There are concerns, but Miami is playing with house money with all of their draft capital and can afford to take that kind of gamble.
Pick Grade: Very Good

Pro Football Network
Pair that Jaylen (Waddle) with another Jaelan, and the Dolphins are sipping cocktails on the beach. Jaelan Phillips is the most talented pass rusher in the class. His blend of athleticism and technique is unmatched. He’s a bonafide top-10 pick with a clean bill of health, making the Dolphins clear winners so far in the 2021 NFL Draft. However, his four concussions forced him to medically retire while at UCLA. Phillips has also broken his ankle and wrist in the past. I’ve had five medically recorded concussions and know first-hand the effects they can have on a person. Still, if he can avoid further damage, he has the potential to be a Pro Bowl player at the position.

Sports Illustrated (SI)
Based on tape alone, Phillips is arguably the best defender in the entire draft. He has fantastic film that backs up even better testing numbers. Phillips is still scratching the surface of what he can become as a player. He could be one of the blue-chip talents in the draft. The injury history is very concerning, though. Phillips was forced to medically retire at UCLA and has concussion issues. This is a very big risk here. The Dolphins needed a talented edge rusher to pair with Andrew Van Ginkel, and Phillips is exactly that. He has a lot of ‘wow’ moments on film. If he can stay healthy, this is the biggest steal in the draft. If not, the Dolphins will be kicking themselves for taking Phillips this high. The risk is there, but obviously, Miami felt it was worth it. -- JB

Mel Kiper (ESPN+)
Miami picked up the draft's best pure pass-rusher in Phillips, who gets to stay in Miami and get after quarterbacks under Brian Flores. Phillips might have been a top-10 pick had he not had a history of injuries from his time at UCLA. It's another solid first round for Miami.
Evaluation: WIN

SBNATION
The Dolphins went with the local guy here, and Phillips becomes the first defensive end off the board. A long, lean pass rusher with amazing moves — Phillips is the prototype for the modern position. He has pursuit speed to chase down agile quarterbacks, and hitting power to make an impact. There are some potential injury concerns, but make no mistake: If those concerns weren’t there he’d be a top 10 pick.
Grade: B+

 

 

 

 

 

Pre-Draft Analysis
Phillips is a powerful edge defender with the heavy hands and body control to work through contact rushing the passer. He excelled when reduced to defensive tackle on obvious pass downs. He has the size and the strength to set the edge against the run. He played just one season at Miami after transferring from UCLA. -- Steve Muench


Post-Draft Analysis
Miami was a press, single-high-safety-dominant defense that blitzed at the third-highest rate in the NFL and generated a lot of turnovers, but a lack of pass-rushers up front might have played a role in the blitz-heavy approach. Pairing Phillips with Emmanuel Ogbah, who had a career-high nine sacks last season, gives the Dolphins two disruptive pass-rushers and puts defensive coordinator Josh Boyer in better position to mix it up. -- Muench

Why they picked him:
The Dolphins' biggest defensive need was an edge rusher who can win one-and-one consistently while holding up against the run -- enter Phillips. Many scouts viewed Phillips as the draft's best edge rusher and a potential top-10 prospect in the draft if he didn't have medical issues. He played right down the road at the University of Miami and was the most productive pass rusher in college football last season.

Biggest question:
Phillips was forced to medically retire at UCLA two years ago because of concussions and he's had a wrist injury in the past, too. Phillips says he had two concussions in college and he was forthright with teams in the pre-draft process. The Dolphins clearly were comfortable with his medical but his health is the biggest question mark for Phillips. -- Cameron Wolfe

 

Player Bio

Phillips was one of the top recruits in the country in 2017, racking up 21 sacks as a senior at Redlands East Valley High School in California. He stayed in-state for college at first, starting four of seven games played at UCLA as a freshman (21 tackles, seven for loss, with 3.5 sacks) but struggled through an ankle injury and suffered a concussion. Phillips had a tough 2018, first suffering a wrist injury when he was hit by a car while on his scooter and then suffering another concussion during the season. He played in just four games that year (20 tackles, one sack) before UCLA announced Phillips was retiring from football. He changed his mind and enrolled at Miami in 2019, sitting out that football season as a transfer. He showed why he was a top recruit during his single season on the field with the Hurricanes, earning second-team Associated Press All-American and second-team All-ACC nods by finishing sixth in the FBS with 15.5 tackles for loss and leading his squad with eight sacks among 45 total tackles (also intercepted a pass). Phillips decided not to play in Miami's bowl game. -- by Chad Reuter

Analysis

  • Draft Projection - Round 1-2
  • NFL Comparison - Maxx Crosby

Overview

Edge defender with plus physical attributes and a motor that keeps him working and attacking throughout the rep. Philips might have the combination of length and athleticism that would allow teams to look at him with a hand on the ground or standing depending on his weight. Adding play strength will be important so that he can stack it up when setting the edge as a run defender in the league. He's a slippery-limbed pass rusher with good first-step quickness, which bodes well for his future rush success if he gets better with his hands and learns a go-to counter. He has a shot at becoming a solid future starter along the edge if his medicals pan out.

Strengths

  • Former five-star recruit with high-impact physical attributes.
  • Has shown flexibility with weight he can carry.
  • Heated up over final four games with 11 tackles for loss and 6.5 sacks.
  • Accelerates into the edge.
  • Adjusts rush track quickly according to the pass set.
  • Flexible upper body to help flip over the punch at top of the rush.
  • Gets skinny to shoot the B-gap and harass the backfield.
  • Closing burst to the quarterback is not in doubt.
  • Plays hard and keeps coming from snap to snap.
  • Very aware as run defender.
  • Sees mesh point clearly on zone reads and recognizes lane choice by runner.
  • Length to handle edge-setting.

Weaknesses

  • Missed time due to ankle and wrist injuries and concussions.
  • Pad level rises too tall off the snap.
  • Below-average core strength for head-to-head battles against tackles.
  • Gets bounced off his base during redirect blocks.
  • Needs better command with his hands as a rusher.
  • Fails to stack moves to stay ahead of pass blockers.
  • Inside counter needs to be unlocked.

 

JAELAN PHILLIPS | Miami | DE | #15 | rJr | 6042 | 266 | Redlands, CA | Redlands East Valley | 05.28.99 (21)

OVERVIEW:
A once-prized five-star recruit at UCLA, concussions and inconsistencies threatened the success of Phillips' career. He opted to finish his career at the Miami, rejuvenating the hype that once surrounded him. He was able to put together a dynamic season in 2020, when his athletic gifts jumped off the film. Phillips is what is wanted from the ideal defensive end prospect, combining big-time talent with a long and well-proportioned frame. He is a pure speed rusher who has some insane explosiveness around the outside track for a man his size. For the most part, Phillips does a nice job setting the edge in the run game, using his length to his advantage. Lacking a lot of game experience, Phillips is still raw technically and is just starting to scratch the surface of how good he can be. He is a high-upside pass rusher whose best football is firmly in front of him. As he continues to get stronger, he has the opportunity to add a power profile to match his superb athleticism. Once he is able to put it all together, we could be talking about a high-volume sack artist.

BACKGROUND:
Raised outside of Los Angeles, California. Five-star recruit according to 247Sports. Major is unknown. Academic standout. Started four of seven games played as a freshman. Started two of four games played as a sophomore. Transferred from UCLA to Miami and redshirted in 2019. Started 10 games for the Hurricanes in 2020. He enjoys singing and writing poetry. Grandfather is a world-renowned pianist and conductor and the dean of music at Lynn University. Plays many instruments and is a classically trained pianist. Had his first concussion when he was 10-years-old. Dealt with an ankle injury and multiple concussions in 2017. Was hit by a car while on his moped and broke his wrist
(January, 2018), which required multiple surgeries including the removal of three bones (April, 2018). Suffered another concussion and decided to medically retire from football (2018). Main passion in life is music. Wants to become a rapper/producer when football is over.

CAREER:

 

Jaelan Phillips was regarded as the No. 1 overall recruit by the 247Sports Composite coming out of Redlands East Valley High School. In his junior and senior season, Phillips combined for 218 tackles and 30.5 sacks and two interceptions. The five-star defensive end received 20 offers, according to 247Sports, before selecting the in-state UCLA Bruins over the likes of Alabama and others.

 

JAELAN PHILLIPS

THE SKINNY:
Super smooth and athletic quarterback-chaser who has all the tools. Phillips wins with quickness, hand usage and elite movement skills. He’s a former number-one overall recruit but a major medical red flag having retired from football at UCLA after multiple injuries.

DEEP DIVE:
There is an awful lot to like about Phillips, but his final grade will depend on how teams view his medical file. On the field, there’s plenty to work with and he might be the best all-round edge talent in the draft because he has everything – great frame with room to grow physically, he’s long, super twitchy, good hands, good feet, changes direction quickly, closes quickly on the ball-carrier. And he’s not close to the finished article. As a rusher, he gets off the snap quickly and attacks the outside hand of the tackle. He’s adept at pushing the hands away and then sinking his hips, bending and flattening before driving to the QB, all in one movement. He does an excellent job of working his inside arm under the outside arm of his opponent and driving up with it and using it to propel him to the passer. But he’s not just a one-trick pony because he gets sacks by various means; he has counter moves, he can bull-rush, he can step outside and force the tackle to overstep, then cut inside and drill the QB, and he even has a good spin move in his armoury. He’s also got good rip-and-swim moves and really good hand usage and he’s strong enough to work tackles back into their passers with one arm. He rushes standing up, with his hand in the ground, and even from an OLB position in a 3-4 front. What you like about him is that he affects the play in ways that are hard to countenance. In the run game, he’s not as advanced as Kwity Paye in terms of how he plays the run, but he has some mettle in those hands, converts speed to power and can jolt his opponent, which gives him space and allows him to use his eyes to locate the ball and either set the edge or make the play. There are times where he is too impatient and bites upfield too quickly, allowing the back in underneath him. He’s also troubled by pulling guards who can get into him before he can affect the play because he doesn’t play flat enough. As the tackle blocks down, he leaves too much space from his angle of attack. Phillips is a really good player who, if he can stay healthy, should be an excellent pro. Based on the evidence it’s a big if.

OFF FIELD:
Played in only 11 games at UCLA before he retired on medical grounds. Has had three concussions and a fourth ‘minor incident’ to his head. Also had two badly sprained ankles, and a bike crash where he had to have two operations on a mangled wrist. Retired in December 2018, then entered the transfer portal and signed with Miami. Was the number-one overall recruit in the nation in 2017. Has said that music is his first love over football.

 

 

JAELAN PHILLIPS

  • DEFENSIVE END
  • Grade: 4.12
  • Projected Round: 1st-2nd
  • School: Miami (FL)
  • Year: Junior

CAREER SNAPSHOT:
A dominant high school defensive end who earned first-team All-USA honors in 2016, Ja-elan Phillips was a five-star recruit. Family con-nections to UCLA saw him begin his career for the Bruins, where he got off to an explosive start as a freshman.
However, a combination of football injuries and a moped crash resulted in him retiring from football in 2018.
He returned to the field for Miami in 2020, earning second-team All-American honors with 15.5 tackles for loss and 8 sacks.

POSITIVES:
xplosive edge rusher who took his game to the next level and is coming off a sensational season. Breaks down well, plays with outstand-ing pad level, and gets leverage on opponents.
Fluid moving in every direction and displays a tremendous first step off the snap. Flows well laterally and gets down the line of scrimmage to make plays in space.
Fundamentally sound, displays solid technique with his hands, and covers a good amount of area on the field. Easily changes direction, bends off the edge, and shows great speed up the field.
Agile, nicely redirects and plays tough, in-stinctive football. Does more than just rush up the field and get after the passer and gives effort defending the run. Chases downfield to make plays if necessary.

NEGATIVES:
Lacks bulk and is easily controlled at the point by a single blocker. Not a stout tack-ler. Struggled with minor injuries and con-cussions in the past.

ANALYSIS:
Phillips was given the opportunity to step into the starting lineup after Gregory Rousseau opt-ed out of the season, and he made the most of his chance. He's a terrific athlete with natural pass-rushing skills as well as growth potential. If Phillips passes medical checks and stays healthy, he offers great upside and should only improve as he physically matures and adds bulk and strength to his frame.

PFN's BEST NFL FITS:
Denver Broncos, Cleveland Browns, New York Giants

 

THE 33RD TEAM

BUILD
Jaelan Phillips brings very long arms and a long, thick frame to the edge position. He is solidly muscular throughout his build, but looks like he could potentially add a little more muscle to his upper body. Phillips has an extremely lengthy injury history, with a serious history of concussions. He nearly retired from football prior to the 2020 season as a result.

MENTAL
Phillips has good play recognition and the ability to react quickly to his run/pass reads. He does not often play with good gap integrity, flying up field with no concern for his gap responsibility. Teams schemed at him on counters because of this, and he failed to adjust. Phillips has flashes of great effort, but also will take plays off. His flashes of toughness, like his motor, are inconsistent.

ATHLETICISM
This player has an explosive get off and initial burst to get up field. He shows outstanding suddenness and excellent short area quickness to knife into gaps, particularly for his size. He is very fast in pursuit, making him a menacing backside run defender. Phillips is not a very under control player, and struggles to be patient while pursuing. He shows good proactive play strength and good ability to generate torque with his lower half and has solid bend and hip flexibility to corner.

TECHNICAL
Phillips is a natural pass rusher with a good bag of tricks that he can use. He has strong and quick hands on his pass rush moves, and shows good accuracy as well. Phillips can show some predictability in his pass rush, however, trying to counter to the inside consistently. This player is stout at the POA and has the strength and adequate bend to win the leverage battle and hold the edge. He is a natural block shedder whose length and strength allow him to shed smoothly. His long arms, wide frame and aggressiveness make him a menacing tackler.

SUMMARY
Jaelan Phillips is an outstanding athlete with the length and pass rush skills to be an immediate pass rushing threat. He projects best as a 4-3 defensive end who can play as the strong side or weak side, though he could be a capable 3-4 rush LB as well. Phillips’ inconsistent motor may hold him back, but the main thing that will keep him from his high potential is his horrid injury history. Chip Kelly recommended that he retire after last season, and one more concussion could be the end of his career. This is a risky, high-upside prospect that some teams will not be willing to touch.

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