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Top Notre Dame NFL Draft Prospects

Photo by NBC Sports

Written by: Joseph Mooney

Twitter: @Full_MOONey25

Breakdown of each Notre Dame draft prospect

Day 1 Prospects:

Julian Okwara: 6’4” 248 lbs Defensive Lineman

Ranked: #5 on Matt Miller’s Big Board #5 on The Draft Network

The senior captain has recorded 63 TOT, 14.5 Sacks, 3 FF, 1 FR, 1 INT over his Sophomore, Junior, and Senior years while at Notre Dame. The shifty edge rusher has the length and agility of an NFL rusher. He’s a good fit within a 4-3 defense because of his quick first step and ability to attack the run. With great physical tools, he’s incredible at performing stunts and crashing hard to the quarterback.

Liam Eichenberg: 6’6” 305 lbs Offensive Lineman

Ranked: #14 on The Draft Network

The long physical senior tackle earned the honor to switch from RT to LT after the departure of former Notre Dame tackle Mike McGlinchy. If drafted in the first round, Eichenberg will follow along with impressive streak on Notre Dame tackles drafted in the first round, Zach Martin, Ronnie Stanley, and McGlinchy. Thanks to his quick feet, Eichenberg is able to neutralize quick edge rusher and truly drive them back. His long arms and hand size allows him to control blocks in both the run and pass game. While at first, he may not be able to sustain the left side of an NFL line, look for Eichenberg to make a fast impact for any NFL team.

Day 2 Prospects:

Khalid Kareem: 6’4” 265 lbs Edge Rusher

Ranked: #27 on The Draft Network

Despite being a 3 year player at Notre Dame, Khalid lacks techniques on his defensive ability. With an Exceptional swim move and bull rushing ability, Kareem is able to attack the inside shoulder of lineman and completely blow up any run game. His aggression sometimes gets the best of him in the pass game but is teachable at the next year. Over his 3 years, Khalid produced 94 TOT, 12 Sacks, and 7 PD showing a lot of versatility to translate to the NFL.

Alohi Gilman: 5’10” 202 lbs Safety

Ranked: #12 on Matt Miller’s Big Board #5 on The Draft Network

The former Navy transfer is an NFL ready Safety. The leader of the Notre Dame defense, see the field well since starting as a freshman and has a high football IQ. A good press and run defender and a superb tackler. Despite sitting out all of his sophomore year, Gilam posted 202 TOT, 5 FR, 1 FR, 3 INT, and 11 PD in just 3 seasons. While depth at this position may force him to slip in the best, Alohi Gilman will be a steal for any team in Day 2.

Cole Kmet: 6’5” 250 lbs Tight End

Ranked: #4 on The Draft Network

The two-sport athlete has a similar frame and built as former Notre Dame two-sport athlete Jeff Samardzija (ended up being drafted in both sports and decided to play baseball). Since being played in the starting lineup Kmet has excelled at the tight end position. Cole Kmet truly caught the eyes of the nation after his 9 catches over 100 receiving yard game against Georgia. Like all Notre Dame tight ends, Cole Kmet is a big vertical threat that can stretch the middle of the field. Despite having problems with ball security, Kmet has strong hands and is an above-average route runner for the position. Kmet needs work on his run blocking ability, but look for teams that enjoy utilizing tight ends in the passing game to target him. Over his sophomore and junior seasons, Cole hauled in 44 catches for 489 yards and 5 touchdowns.

Day 3 Prospects:

Chase Claypool: 6’4” 229 lbs Wide Receiver

The 4-year player is for sure a fan favorite at Notre Dame and will be missed. The senior captain poses a matchup nightmare for opposing defenses due to his size, speed, and physicality. Claypool is a true red-zone target with his large frame and strong hands. Chase Claypool also is a great addition to the run game, his strength allows him to control his defender opening running lines on the outside. Over his 4 years at Notre Dame, Chase recorded 133 catches, 1890 receiving yards, and 14 touchdowns.

Troy Pride JR: 5’11” 194 lbs Cornerback

Ranked: #17 on The Draft Network

Troy Pride prefers to read the quarterback and sit back in zone coverage but don’t let this speedster fool you, he’s excellent in press-man coverage. The track star posted a 4.38 40 yard dash time which allows him to close quickly downfield. His footwork and defensive breakdowns give him the ability to close early on short routes for minimal gain. His undersized makes him vulnerable to be beaten by a bigger physical receiver on the outside in man to man coverage.

Notable Undrafted Free Agent Prospects:

Chris Finke: 5’9” 184 lbs Wide Receiver

Ian Book: 6’0” 200 lbs Quarterback

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