As the 2016 NFL Draft at the Auditorium Theatre in Chicago quickly approaches, CSNChicago.com is releasing a list of the Top 5 prospects at each position leading up to Day 1 of the draft on Thursday, April 28. Next up is linebacker.
1. Joey Bosa, Ohio State
6’5” | 269 lbs.
51 tackles, 16 TFL, 5 sacks, INT, 4 PD, FF
"Where He Wins: Explosion to power is the name of Bosa’s game. Don’t expect an edge bender when watching Bosa. Instead admire his burst off the line and powerful hands to jolt his opponent, then press and walk them back or shed to make a play in the backfield. I would not ask him to drop into coverage. Why waste the pass rushing potential more than it is necessary? Bosa is also an outstanding run defender, shedding one, two or even three blocks at times to make a play at the line of scrimmage." - Josh Norris, Rotoworld.com
2. Sheldon Rankins, Louisville
6’1” | 299 lbs.
58 tackles, 13 TFL, 6 sacks, PD, 2 FR
"Where He Wins: A true interior disruptor. Rankins was asked to play next to the center, guard and outside of the tackle this year. He’s at his best getting upfield off the snap with explosion and agility, then uses a variety of moves to win one on one. He’s quite strong for a compact defensive tackle. Disruptors like Rankins can be difficult to find in any class. Rankins was on the field for 79.4% of the school’s snaps." - Josh Norris, Rotoworld.com
3. Vernon Butler, Louisiana Tech
6’4” | 323 lbs.
50 tackles, 10 TFL, 3 sacks, 2 PD, FR
"Where He Wins: Butler moves differently than most interior defensive linemen. He can be slippery on counter moves or off the snap, even at 6’4/325 lbs. Butler has displayed the ability to win through his opponent and around them. Don’t go too far with this comparison, but Butler can win in the same ways as Mo Wilkerson. A “leap of faith” candidate due to poor athletic testing." - Josh Norris, Rotoworld.com
4. Robert Nkemdiche, Mississippi
6’3” | 294 lbs.
26 tackles, 7 TFL, 3 sacks, PD
"Where He Wins: Production was definitely minimal, but Nkemdiche offers plenty of disruption potential. After playing outside early in his career, Nkemdiche looks at his best inside. His natural athleticism is an advantage there, winning around heavy footed offensive linemen off the snap or through weaker opponents. He lacks backfield vision and awareness." - Josh Norris, Rotoworld.com
5. Jarran Reed, Alabama
6’3” | 307 lbs.
57 tackles, 4.5 TFL, sack, 2 PD, FR
"Where He Wins: An extremely stout run defender who can play from outside or over top of the center, guard or even tackle on some snaps with a specific role. The question is if he can be more than just a run defender, or if that strength can be coupled with upfield ability to be an asset as a pass rusher." - Josh Norris, Rotoworld.com
Click here for profiles of more than 150 prospects, including a scouting report and video interviews with each player. Video analysis provided by NBC Sports and Rotoworld NFL Draft expert Josh Norris.