Duke Ejiofor, EDGE
School: Wake Forest | Conference: ACC
College Experience: Senior | Age: 22
Height / Weight: 6-3 / 264 lbs
Projected Draft Status: 3rd Round or 4th Round
NFL Comparison: Terrell Suggs
Duke Ejiofor was a 3-star prospect from Houston, Texas. During his recruitment process, he got a few offers from in-state schools such as Rice, UTEP, UTSA, and Texas State but decided to go northeast to Wake Forest. Ejiofor has quietly been one of the better EDGE prospects in the country and his production as a starter has been pretty consistent. Ejiofor wins with his quickness speed and pass rush moves. He is no doubt one of the more refined prospects at the position in that he knows how to chain moves together get off blocks and get into the backfield. Ejiofor is probably one of the best examples this year of a true ‘tweener’ at his current weight he on the heavier range of 3-4 OLBs and could fit the molds of a Justin Houston, Derrick Morgan, Nick Perry etc. He could also make the easy transition and stay as a 4-3 DE. It will be interesting to see how teams view Ejiofor position wise. At the end of February, he decided to get surgery on an injured labrum he had sustained during the season. He won't be able to test athletically but he says he will be ready for training camp. It's somewhat of a bold move for Ejiofor not to hold off on surgery for the combine and one that shows he has complete confidence in what he has put on tape.
- Well built for the position with good size and length.
- Has a strategy in his attack and has his pass rush moves at the ready and can make quick work of offensive linemen. Chains moves together and has several under his belt including a rip, swim, spin etc. Hands are quick and powerful. Splits the gap between the guard and tackle with his quickness.
- Plays with effort and tenacity never stops working to get to the ball. Uses his length strength and power to jar lineman and move them out of his way.
- Strength and contact balance show up on film as he gets off blocks and wins leverage battles to get into the backfield and bring down opponents.
- Athleticism looks below average. Has great initial quickness but doesn't have the long speed or closing burst to finish some plays.
- Flexibility looks just average rushing off the edge and bending around the tackle.
- Injury history which includes two concussions and this labrum issue. Has missed at least 5 games in his career because of the former issue.
- For teams that want him at OLB at the next level, he has not dropped in coverage much if at all.
Let’s see his work:
Duke Ejiofor's labrum surgery is unfortunate because it's unlikely he'll be able to test. Don't worry too much about it though, if you have eyes, it's easy to tell how athletic he is. Uses his hands well up the arc, huge arsenal of moves that he strings together. pic.twitter.com/d3iCK7YuLV— The Mick Nartin™ (@themicknartin) March 2, 2018
Duke Ejiofor. Nasty spin move. pic.twitter.com/CazuWlC5v1— Jared Stanger (@JaredStanger) March 13, 2018
How He Would Fit On The Redskins
Duke Ejiofor should receive interest from a number of teams with different base schemes. For the Redskins I think he is obviously a 3-4 OLB. Ejiofor’s array of pass rush moves and initial quickness are among some of the best EDGE prospects in this class. Its a shame we won't get any hard numbers for Ejiofor’s athletic profile but my eye test tells me that he is a bit less athletic than Ryan Kerrigan and Preston Smith. I think Ejiofor would provide great depth at strongside OLB behind Kerrigan where pass rush opportunities present themselves as opposed to him dropping in coverage which he has not really done and I don't think he would be good at. I think Ejiofor is a high floor prospect. He may get his opportunity to start somewhere but I view him as an excellent depth player who can keep the pass rushing rotation fresh by coming in a getting a handful of sacks as well as defend the run by helping set an edge for many years to come. He should be able to come in and contribute to the unit immediately as he is further along in his technique compared to other prospects at the position. He won't be able to make major improvements to his athleticism and he will have to stay healthy when he is called upon but he can improve his flexibility and coverage ability (to a certain point) as part of his development.