Scouting the NFL Draft: EDGE Charles Tapper | NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
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Scouting the NFL Draft: EDGE Charles Tapper

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    Charles Tapper of the Oklahoma Sooners tries to block a field goal attempt by Cade Foster of the Alabama Crimson Tide during the Allstate Sugar Bowl at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome Jan. 2, 2014. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)

    Charles Tapper, EDGE, Oklahoma
    Ht. 6'3", Wt. 271, Arm: 34 ⅜", Hand: 11 ½", Bench: 23
    40 yd: 4.67, 10 yd.: 1.59, 3 Cone: -, Vertical: 34", Broad: 9'11"
    Games Watched: Baylor (2014), Kansas, Iowa St.

    If you think other games better reflect this player’s ability or you want to request a profile on a specific player, email me or hit me up on Twitter.

    Charles Tapper, a three-star prospect out of Maryland, attended Oklahoma and made little impact in five games as a freshman. He made a big leap as a sophomore, though, recording 5.5 sacks and 9 TFL and being voted all-conference by the Big 12 coaches. His production dipped as a junior when he was moved inside and used more in a two-gapping role.

    While he was still used mainly inside as a senior, Tapper saw more action along the edge of the defensive line and his production increased. He finished the 2015 season with 7 sacks, 10 TFL, 4 forced fumbles and 3 passes broken up. The Big 12 coaches again voted him all-conference and he also was also named an All-America honorable mention by Sports Illustrated.

    Strengths

    • Size - Ideal frame, nearly ideal height
    • Burst - Exceptional for his size
    • Length - Uses long arms well
    • Hands - Heavy and active
    • Speed to Power - Good bull rush potential
    • Bend - Agile, outside rush potential
    • Disciplined - Good fun fits

    Weaknesses

    • Pass-Rush Moves - Must develop repertoire to stay clean
    • Anchor - Pushed back, inconsistent pad level
    • Production - Not yet the sum of his parts
    • Inexperience - Raw, all projection at this point
    • Hand Use - Doesn't use tool to disengage
    • Loses Ball - Caught up in blocks at times

    Verdict: Third-Round Pick

    I always hate to second guess coaches, but Tapper was definitely miscast in a two-gapping role. With his physical attributes and athleticism, he profiles as an edge rusher in the NFL. If he can land with a defensive line coach that can teach add technique to his physical gifts, he could have a very productive career.

    The 2016 NFL Draft is light on edge rushers and lacks an elite disruptor at the position. If the Cowboys don't like any of the first rounders, which is highly likely at No. 4, they could wait until their third-round pick and add Tapper's, whose upside is among the highest of draftable 4-3 defensive ends. It's not often teams can find rushers with Tapper's athleticism late on Day 2 of the draft.