Oakland Raiders

Raiders address need for youth on defensive line with fourth round pick

ellis

The Oakland Raiders started day three of the NFL Draft by taking defensive tackle Justin Ellis out of Louisiana State. The Raiders started off the draft on defense before going on to take offensive players with their next two picks before coming back to defense and taking Ellis.

At 6′ 1″, 334 pounds, Ellis is a massive body that does a good job stacking up offensive linemen and clogging up holes. The Raiders added a lot of talent to the defensive line in free agency but all of the players are older. Aside from defensive tackle Stacy McGee, the Raiders really had no young and talented defensive linemen on the roster.

Ellis also continues a theme for general manager Reggie McKenzie. The Raiders have brought in a lot of guys who are versatile and can play in multiple defensive fronts. Last season, the Raiders ran a base 4-3 defense but would often show 3-4 looks. Ellis is a nose tackle who can play in either front with success. He doesn’t do much in the pass rush but the Raiders have that covered with Antonio Smith and Justin Tuck, who can move inside on passing downs. Ellis is here as a run stuffer to help out McGee and Pat Sims.

CBS Sports:

He looks like a zero-technique who should be a man-eating run stuffer, but is more of an upfield penetrator who is a handful to control as a pass rusher. Ellis is scheme-versatile to play a two-gapping NT role or as a 3-technique who wins with initial burst.

Ellis’s rare combination of size and quickness make him an intriguing addition to the Raiders D-line. A wide-bodied plugger who possesses surprising up-field burst against the pass. Could be one of the steals of this draft.

NFLDraftScout.com

Massive man who is tough to evict when he decides he wants to own a piece of football real estate as a two-gap tackle. He is even tougher to stop once he gets all that muscular humanity moving in one direction. Made a big impression at East-West and Senior Bowl workouts. Logic says he should manage his weight, which reached nearly 400 pounds, but he seems to be in football fighting shape at a svelte 350-ish. Frankly: A large, mean-spirited man from a very tough background. Here’s your choice — Either draft him or try to block him for the next few years.

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