Terrell McClain NFL Draft Scouting Report


Terrell McClain
6'2, 305 pounds | Defensive tackle | South Florida

Pass rush:
McClain doesn't possess great pass rush ability.  He lacks the proper hand placement and leverage to get a good bull rush.  In order to drive an offensive lineman back into the pocket you need to get inside hands and keep your pad level low.  McClain's pad level raises as the play develops hindering his ability to get a good push on the pocket.  If McClain is going to generate any pressure it is going to be the result of his good snap recognition.  He has shown that he can fire off the football and penetrate the pocket but not on a consistent basis. 

Pursuit: Effort is something that McClain possesses as his motor is non stop.  You will often find him 10 yards down the field in pursuit of the ball carrier.  McClain works tirelessly to disengage himself from the offensive linemen.  He boasts good lateral quickness that allows him to get into position to make a play on outside runs.  While he doesn't have the quickness to catch a back from behind that doesn't stop him from trying.  His overall effort often results in him reaching his target.

Quickness: McClain has good awareness and snap recognition.  His possesses a quick first step that allows him to beat the blocker off the ball and to a spot. When McClain identifies the ball carrier he has the ability to quickly close and make a play.

Run defend: As a run defender, McClain relies on his quickness to make a play.  He struggles at the point of attack due to poor balance.  He ended plays on the ground way to often and that is a result of not keeping his feet underneath him.  To properly play the run you need to be able to work through contact towards the football.  McClain struggled to disengage from the blockers which limited his ability to properly play the run.

Strength: McClain showed good initial burst and pop off the line of scrimmage.  He delivered a strong initial blow to the offensive line which allows him to slip and penetrate the pocket.  The biggest concern I have is his ability to anchor after contact and hold at the point of attack.  The offensive line was able to push him back and on the ground on more than a handful of plays.

Tackling: In the games that I viewed McClain missed 3 tackles where he had the back stopped behind the line.  He didn't use proper technique and was often out of control.  However, he does deliver a nice pop when he faces the ball carrier in tight spaces.

Technique: McClain keeps his pad level low as he explodes out of his stance but as the play progresses he gets high.  As his pad level rises, the blocker is able to get into his body impacting his ability to disengage.  McClain doesn't appear to be an ideal fit for a 2 gap system because he struggles to lock out the blocker and disengage.  He did show quick hands and a suddenness to slip past the offensive line and into the backfield.

Games Viewed: Clemson and UConn

Final word: The more I watched McClain the more like liked about the kid.  He is still a bit raw but possesses the athletic ability and size to develop into an effected defensive lineman.  McClain showed a great motor and effort which will help with his transition to the NFL.  Ideally, he would be a fit as a 3 technique that is free to shoot the gap.  However, with proper coaching he might be able to develop into an adequate 2 gap defender; thanks to his thick lower half.

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