This is the second in an occasional series looking more deeply at relatively unknown players on the back end of the WFT roster who may end up contributing in the coming year.
Casey Toohill, EDGE
Height / Weight: 6’5” / 254 lbs
Draft Status: Taken by the Eagles in the 7th round of the 2020 draft
Casey Toohill was taken in the final round of last year’s draft by the Philadelphia Eagles as an EDGE rushing prospect with a impressive college pedigree. Hailing from Stanford, Toohill wasn’t a full-time starter until his redshirt senior season, but, when he finally got the opportunity, he made the most of it. In 2019, Toohill finished 5th in the PAC-12, with 8 sacks and 11.5 TFLs, earning second team All PAC-12 honors. He was also a finalist for the William V. Campbell Trophy - won by Justin Herbert - which is colloquially known as the academic Heisman. In the middle of last season, Washington grabbed Toohill after he was waived off Philadelphia’s practice squad, adding him to the active roster for the final 8 games of the season, primarily in a special teams’ role.
Scouting reports around draft time last year echo a common theme, that Toohill was still a couple of years off, but that his ceiling - if he takes the right steps, to get stronger, and refine his technique - could be as a rotational pass rusher in the league.
BIG SCHOOL SLEEPER: CASEY TOOHILL, STANFORD
Good things come to those who wait, or so they say. And Stanford’s Casey Toohill has been waiting a long time for a breakout season like the one he had in 2019. Toohill, a fifth-year senior, nearly doubled his career totals in tackles, sacks and tackles for loss in 2019. With eight sacks and 11.5 tackles for loss, Toohill showed disruptive ability on the edge — and he’s very much a “Stanford guy” with his blue-collar approach.
“I put a projection grade on him because he’s athletic and long and should grow into his frame even more. I think he’s way better in two years.” — West Coast scout for NFC team
“[H]e has issues stopping the run, but he has great flashes as a pass rusher. His body type may not be fully finished and additional play strength would be crucial considering his inability to anchor and shed against run blocks. His rush is much less effective against stronger tackles, but he’s a decent athlete and hints at rush skill that has room for development. He’s currently caught between a 3-4 OLB and 4-3 DE. If he can become bigger, stronger and more polished as a rusher, he might make sense as a backup edge with sub-package talent as a wide-9 technique.” - Lance Zierlein
Currently, Toohill and James Smith-Williams are the depth defensive ends to Montez Sweat and Chase Young. Both of the 2020 draftees are likely to get some additional competition before the offseason workouts begin, and each has a great opportunity to step up behind one of the best pass rushing duos in the league.
Linebacker athleticism scores from the combine, via NextGen stats. Toohill was also the top athlete among edge rushers, per SPARQ. pic.twitter.com/fW7HzFHCiD— Tim McManus (@Tim_McManus) April 28, 2020
- Has the right body size to develop into an effective pro.
- His high football IQ helps with play diagnosis.
- Plays with a relentless motor.
- Has great athleticism metrics that put him near the top of the EDGE rushers in his draft class in several categories.
- Needs to improve his work against the run.
- Should add more strength to become an effective EDGE rusher.
- Has to work on refining his hand usage.
- Can struggle if asked to drop into coverage.
Let’s See His Work
Additional vignettes on players at the back end of the roster can be found here.
Do you think Casey Toohill will make WFT’s 53 man roster this year?
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