Injury History: Minor Back Injury (2019)
Games Evaluated: 2019 Vs: Minnesota (Bowl), LSU, Oregon 2017 Vs: Georgia
Report By: Bobby Greco
Q.A.B. / C.O.D.: 7.60
Playing Speed: 7.80
For playing more of a power style D-Line, he is a good athlete. He was able to play every position across the line and never had a drop in effectiveness. It was impressive to see how well he adjusted from play to play because he wasn't just changing positions. He also went back and forth between being a standing rusher or having a hand on the ground. Flexibility is a real strong point for him, as he was able to consistently get lower than his opponent and still be athletic enough to win his pass rush. The only inconsistent part of his game that I noticed was his explosiveness and that only changed depending on if his hand was on the ground or not. The same can be said about his coordination, he just seemed a lot more comfortable with his hand down.
PASS RUSH ABILITY: 7.42
Initial Quickness: 7.40
Use of Hands: 7.10
Pass Rush Moves: 6.70
Finish Ability: 7.70
His pass-rushing ability is kind of an anomaly and he is difficult to grade here. He plays with great leverage and his raw power gives him an advantage against many linemen because it makes him extremely hard to move. He has very good penetration and is a good finisher, once his hands are on the QB. On the other hand, though, he doesn't have many pass rush moves and can stall out if his initial move is beaten. Hand use can also be an issue, especially when he is a standing rusher. That is really when his deficiencies show because he doesn't look as confident and the activity in his hands really drops. With his overall frame, NFL teams should have him playing a true DL position with his hand in the dirt and that should really give him a boost from a pass-rushing stand point. If you look at his work strictly when his hand was down, his pass-rushing grades would go up quite a bit and that should happen at the next level.
He is a very tough player and someone who is a lot to handle for his opponents. From the time stepped foot on to campus he was a starter, who played the role of the immovable object and he was very productive. His ability to take on a double team and not get driven back is a testament to his toughness. It was very reminiscent of former 49ers DT Justin Smith because he was a force that ate up double teams and in turn would really open up the rest of the defense. It is also really good to see a player like that, who starts right away and improves his production every season.
AGAINST THE RUN: 7.77
Play with Leverage: 8.50
Stack and Shed: 7.50
Gap Shooting Ability: 7.80
Run at Him: 7.80
Run Away: 7.40
Stopping the run is where he really shines because this is the area that his ability to eat up blockers has the biggest impact. Again his ability to do this really reminds me of Justin Smith and that gets me very excited about him. He is very strong at shooting gaps and taking away running lanes. It is also refreshing to see a player that doesn't over pursue in the run game, he never goes more than two yards from the LOS and that can have a game wrecking impact on teams. As good as he is stacking linemen, he isn't the best shedding the blocks. This again goes back to whether or not he is standing, he just doesn't have quick enough hands to be a standing DE. When his hand is in the ground, you can actually see how much more comfortable he is in his play and it makes him have better hands. He could also stand to improve his tackling. Though he was very effective in college, NFL backs will run right through those arm tackles. Runs away from him are also a weaker area for him, as he can get lost in the shuffle of things.
Instincts are very good with him and he seems prepared for every play. His teamwork is also a strong point because he is happy taking on blockers and letting his teammates get the stats. It's nice to see a player like that because they are integral to a strong defense. He changes position too much, unfortunately, so you can't get a good read on his retention. He gets caught in a lot of the same traps from game to game, but it's always when he was switching positions.
Plays with great leverage and is a beast to block. He is very versatile and can play anywhere across the line. Very strong, has the great ability to take on a double team and stifle both guys. Plays with great instincts and is prepared for any situation.
Doesn't have the fastest hands, nor a big arsenal of pass rush moves. Struggles as a standing DE, he is too big and powerful to be used as a speed rusher.
Marlon is the type of player that is needed by every team in the league because he can have a huge impact without getting many stats. He is very similar to newly signed Buffalo Bill, Quinton Jefferson because he can play a tackle or end position and is very effective at both. I think he best fits a 4-3 defense, that way he will always have his hand in the ground. He will end up being a vital piece to any defense, even if he isn't the one getting the stats and should be a 2nd round pick.