One prospect in this year's draft class that has not received much attention is former defensive tackle from South Carolina Kelcy Quarles. He was the most talented Gamecock defensive lineman off the ball. Quarles consistently splits gaps, showing both the burst to surprise blockers and the power to crash through late attempts by his opponents to latch on to him. His impressive strength gives him the ability to bull rush the offensive lineman into the backfield and force a tackle. The family tree shows history of football, since his uncle was Ben Coates (Patriots Hall of Fame TE) and father played college football at South Carolina as well.
Another thing he is given credit for quite often by scouts is he hustles laterally and down-field in pursuit and is willing to leave his feet to make the diving, heavy hit on ball-carriers. At 6'4 and 297 pounds he is also the size of a big defensive end which is definitely a possibility in a 3-4 defensive scheme. If selected by the right team, he could provide some versatility and talent to fill a rotation. Bleacher Report writer Ryan Lowles says, "he shows the ability to control opponents at the point of attack, getting under their pads and occasionally making tackles when he is being blocked."
According to cbssports.com, Quarles earned All-SEC First Team recognition from the league's coaches and The Associated Press after finishing the regular season with a team-high in sacks (9.5) and 13.5 tackles for loss. Some scouts say that is why his stock drops slightly based on the fact he was in single coverage since the pressure was mostly on Clowney. If it wasn't for being overshadowed by Jadeveon Clowney, Quarles may not be a first or second round draft pick, but that will only motivate him to prove the doubters wrong in the NFL and make teams wish they didn't pass on him.
Projected Destination: Round 3, Pick 85th Green Bay Packers
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