2014 NFL Draft Video Breakdown: Is Josh Mauro a late-round steal?

The Stanford defensive end has been raising eyebrows throughout the fall and spring


- Excellent size. 6-foot-6, 271 pounds is a pro-ready frame with plenty of room to add on. That's a big positive for a guy who's a later round prospect.

- Plays both lined out wide as a 5-technique DE and inside as a nose tackle or 3-technique. That positional versatility is a big plus. 

- Demands quite a bit of attention from blockers. Was doubled teamed quite a bit in this game, and defeated them on run plays from time to time, mostly due to a good burst at the line and his grappling strength.

- Good awareness of where a quarterback's throwing lanes are. Works his way backward to grab an interception in this game, and has a good habit of getting his hands up and on the football - like on the interception that sealed the Rose Bowl win in 2013.

- Functionally strong. Pushes a guard straight back almost into the quarterback.


- No great (or even really good) pass rush moves. Just kind of bullrushes every time. He's strong enough to do that in college - and may have been coached to not get too fancy - but he needs some extra mustard to get past NFL linemen.

- His hands are active, but they don't really do anything. He kinds of swats at offensive linemen without really engaging with them and throwing those fools aside like he's capable of.

- Runs an inside twist stunt pretty poorly at one point. Runs it again twice later in the game and does fine, though.

- Isn't particularly fleet footed. But he is a huge dude, so that's understandable.


Mauro should be a great value pick to help bolster a defensive line, as he's a nice prospect to be a backside down defensive end in a 3-4 system - think Jared Crick from Nebraska, who was a 4th round pick by the Texans. Mauro needs to be coached to use his hands more in order to make the most of his talent, but he's a nice diamond in the rough for a defensive coach looking to get some good value later in the draft. As he gets stronger and more adapted to the professional game, I've got the feeling some d-line coach out there is going to love Josh Mauro this fall. 

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