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The Green Bay Packers will enter the 2021 NFL draft hoping to find a few more valuable pieces to add to an otherwise talented roster after winning 26 regular-season games and making the NFC Championship Game in back-to-back seasons under coach Matt LaFleur.
Between now and the draft, Packers Wire will periodically break down one top prospect capable of landing in Green Bay later this month.
Up next is Washington defensive lineman Levi Onwuzurike:
What he can do
– Somewhat undersized (6-2, 290 pounds) defensive tackle prospect that played an odd role at Washington. Not a typical nose tackle type but played plenty of snaps there. Could be a much more productive pro in the right role
– Excellent burst off the ball. Quick-twitch defensive linemen are always in demand
– Really flashed disruptive ability despite not playing an attacking role. Had 31 pressures on under 300 pass-rushing snaps in 2019, per Pro Football Focus
– Probably has untapped potential as an interior pass-rusher. Could be very good on stunts and twists with edge rushers
– Doesn’t lack power despite size. He can reset the line of scrimmage with long arms and jolting hands. Did 29 reps on the bench press with 33″ arms
– Won’t be a block-eater at the next level. He’ll need chances to go one-on-one against interior blockers to be disruptive
– Only had seven sacks and 16 tackles for losses over 39 college games. Makes for a scary projection
– Opted out of the 2020 season and is already 23 years old
How he fits
If the Packers are going to prioritize finding a disruptive defensive lineman and miss out on Christian Barmore, Onwuzurike could be an option. He’s not an ideal fit in a three-man front, but NFL teams operate mostly out of subpackages in today’s game and Onwuzurike probably has untapped potential in an attacking scheme. It’s worth noting that new Packers defensive coordinator Joe Barry saw the impact that another undersized but strong and disruptive defensive tackle can have on the game. Onwuzurike isn’t Aaron Donald, but he could fit the type. The Packers have an obvious need along the defensive line, but is Onwuzurike too similar to Kingsley Keke?
Playstyle at the next level might be comparable to Tyrone Crawford, who was an effective interior rusher for many years in Dallas. Lance Zierlein of NFL.com believes his ceiling could be Sheldon Richardson.
Where Packers could get him
Possibly at No. 29. His range appears to be within the late first round and into the second round. He’s undersized and didn’t have great college production, so a fall deep into the second round is possible.