Johnathan Hankins 2013 NFL Draft prospect notes

COLUMBUS, OH - SEPTEMBER 15: Johnathan Hankins #52 of the Ohio State Buckeyes celebrates a sack on quarterback Zach Maynard #15 of the California Golden Bears with teammate Garrett Goebel #53 at Ohio Stadium on September 15, 2012 in Columbus, Ohio. Ohio State defeated California 35-28. (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)

Johnathan Hankins
6'3, 317 pounds | Defensive tackle | Ohio State

Few positions are valued more highly in the NFL Draft than defensive tackle. Twelve tackles have been taken in the first round the past three years, which is behind just defensive end in regard to most players selected.

Ohio State's Johnathan Hankins is sure to add to the first round total whenever he chooses to come out. The junior is an effective space filler and has uncanny quickness for such a large player. Before the start of the season, Hankins declared he'd be back for his senior season unless he would be the No. 1 pick in the draft. Don't be shocked if that becomes a reality for Hankins. While he's not necessarily a flashy defensive tackle like Ndamukong Suh, Hankins can dominate in the middle. From a size and athleticism standpoint, he compares favorably to Vince Wilfork of the New England Patriots.

As a sophomore, Hankins had 67 tackles (32 solo) with 11 tackles for loss and three sacks. Preseason All-American. Named to the Bednarik Award watch list.

Positives:

- Has a particularly quick first step to slide between blockers and get into the backfield. Gets out on the move nicely. His instincts are evident and impressive. Gets a read on where the block is going to develop and works around it.

- At Ohio State, Hankins often gets lined up at tackle, but has moved outside to generate a power rush.

- Showed the discipline to get his weight more in check. Between his sophomore and junior seasons, Hankins trimmed down from 330 pound to 317.

- Gets excellent leverage and plays with good knee bend to stay lower than the offensive lineman.

- Strong enough to hold his place on the line in the run game, even against multiple blockers.

Negatives:

- Needs to improve his hand usage, especially on counter pass rush moves. Poor hand usage often leads Hankins to shoulder push offensive linemen. It's something that works in college football, but won't as much in the NFL.

- At times could be more patient. Hankins likes to split gaps and get up field instead of holding his position and occupying blocks.

- Although they appear to be in his past, Hankins has had some trouble with weight control issues.

- Slowed at the end of the 2011 by a knee injury which forced him to wear a brace.

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