Nick Bosa is passionate about the art of rushing the quarterback.
When providing an example of what he likes about his role on the football field, Bosa cited – as one would expect – a particular defensive lineman for an NFL franchise in Los Angeles.
Obviously, Bosa has spent countless hours watching and working out with his older brother, Joey Bosa of the Los Angeles Chargers.
But when describing the process of fine-tuning his technique and adding new moves to his repertoire, he spoke of studying Los Angeles Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald, the two-time NFL Defensive Player of the Year.
“A lot of players right now are using a cross-chop move that is kind of new to the NFL,” Bosa told NBC Sports Bay Area. “Aaron Donald likes to use it. It’s working out pretty well for him. Just seeing stuff like that, guys using new moves and then getting together and talking to them is pretty fun.
“You just start doing it in practice a little bit and work on it. Maybe you work on it on scout team and in a one-on-ones. Then you get to full speed and you hit one good, and it’s one of your moves and you can use it.”
The NFL Scouting Combine is this week in Indianapolis. Bosa, whose final season at Ohio State was cut short due to surgery to repair a core-muscle injury, is expected to take part in all the testing Sunday during his on-field workout. If he is satisifed with the results, he likely will not work out at Ohio State's pro day next month.
But Bosa’s value goes far beyond his height, weight, speed and all the other measurables. He enjoys the process of experimenting and adding elements to his game.
“It’s fun to me, just trying to get better,” Bosa said. “Pass rushing is full of little nuances. And it’s fun for me to find new ways to get better.”
First-round NFL draft picks run in the family.
John Bosa, father of Joey and Nick, was a first-round draft pick as a defensive lineman for the Miami Dolphins in 1987. A year later, the Dolphins selected outside linebacker Eric Kumerow in the first round. John Bosa married Kumerow’s sister, Cheryl. Joey Bosa, John and Chery's eldest son, was the No. 3 overall pick of the Chargers in 2016.
Nick Bosa might be even further along at this stage than his older brother because of the knowledge he has picked up along the way, according to his dad.
“Nick is a little more advanced because of the mentoring he’s had from Joey," John Bosa said. "His combination is just scary. Nick is unbelievably, uncannily strong.
“He’s played with leverage since he was in youth football. He knows and understands leverage and how he can throw guys around. And he’s just really a scary combination of size, speed and technique. He’s got great technique.”
If the Arizona Cardinals do not select Nick Bosa with the top overall selection, the 49ers could grab him to help solve their issues at edge rusher with the No. 2 pick.
Joey Bosa, who measured 6-foot-5 ¼, 269 pounds at the combine three years ago, has recorded 28.5 sacks in his 35-game NFL career. Nick Bosa was listed at 6-4, 263 pounds at Ohio State, where he recorded 17.5 sacks in 29 games over three seasons.
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“As far as players, they’re both great players and they have a lot of similarities,” John Bosa said. “But if you watch their games, they’re a little bit different. Joey is a little longer and leaner, has a little more of that edge, hand-fighting. Nick is coming along with that. But they’re both elite in slightly different ways.
“But you really can’t compare them until Nick has a Rookie of the Year and a Pro Bowl. Then, we can start comparing them.”