2023 NFL draft preview: Defensive lineman Colby Wooden

·2 min read

When it comes to draft-eligible players for the Auburn Tigers in 2022, the top two are edge rusher Derick Hall and running back Tank Bigsby. The next player on the list should be defensive lineman Colby Wooden.

The Georgia product finished second on the team in quarterback pressures behind Hall in 2021. His production has grown each year on the Plains and if he follows the trend it could be a monster year for Wooden.

In their ongoing summer scouting series, Touchdown Wire named Wooden among the top interior defensive linemen for next year’s draft class. Auburn Wire takes a look at his profile for the 2023 NFL draft.

What Mark Schofield Says

Colby Wooden was a four-star prospect coming out of Archer High School in Georgia, who enrolled early at Auburn in January of 2019. He played in three games for the Tigers as a true freshman that season, recording four tackles.

During the 2020 campaign, Wooden earned a s tarting spot at defensive tackle, recording 41 tackles and ranking third in the conference with 9.5 tackles for a loss. He was named to the All-Freshman SEC team at the end of the year.

This past season, Wooden kicked outside, starting at defensive end for Auburn. He recorded 61 tackles, including 8.5 for a loss, and 4.5 sacks on the year.

Film Review

The main question on him might be his NFL role. Listed at 6’5″ 278, and having spent time at both defensive end and defensive tackle, his usage will be something to monitor next season. Perhaps his NFL home is on the edge, but some of his best work came with him aligned on the interior last season. Of his 42 charted pressures, 32 came with him aligned inside, like this play against Arkansas:

Colby Wooden's PFF Grades

Year

Def Grade

Run Def

Tackling

Pass Rush

QB Pressures

2019

70.0

78.3

78.6

54.0

1

2020

68.6

61.3

58.0

69.0

24

2021

80.2

67.9

67.4

80.6

41

 

Colby Wooden's Career Stats

Year

Tackles

Solo

TFLs

Sacks

FRs

2019

6

4

0.5

0.0

0

2020

41

19

9.0

3.5

0

2021

61

34

8.5

4.5

1

 

Current Mock Draft Projection

According to the Mock Draft Database, one mock had Wooden as the No. 14 overall selection.

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