Muhammad Wilkerson, DT/DE, Temple

Scouting reports of the defensive tackles in the 2011 Draft.
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Muhammad Wilkerson, DT/DE, Temple

Postby Pudge » Tue Mar 01, 2011 12:49 pm

Temple Junior
40: 4.96


Has a good first step and does a nice job getting through gaps. Uses his burst upfield to beat the guard and get penetration in the backfield. Hard to block because of his solid strength and power. Has good range and motor to make plays in space, and does a good job in pursuit.


Doesn't really use his hands to disengage from blockers and needs to improve his techniqe. If he doesn't beat you off the snap, then he's not going to be as effective at making stops in the backfield.


Wilkerson is fairly raw, but a high motor player with an excellent combo of athleticism, strength, and speed. He plays end in Temple's 3-4 defense, but has the size and ability to also play tackle in a 4-man front. He's a guy that dominated MAC competition because he's such an athletic specimen, but he's raw as far as being an impact NFL prospect at this point. Put together two productive years as a starter, combining for 131 tackles, 23.5 tackles for loss, and 16.5 sacks.


Wilkerson is probably a bit more natural as a defensive tackle in a 4-3 scheme, but there isn't a lot of difference in terms of him playing in a 3-4 either. He has the tall, frame to be good there. But because I'm not sure he's great stack and shed player, he's probably best in a scheme that will want him to try to get as much penetration as possible. There are more 3-4 schemes now that want their ends to penetrate, and in that scheme he can be a similar player as someone like a Darnell Dockett, who was also a good 4-3 defensive tackle when the Cardinals ran that scheme. That would be a good comparison to his talent level. He's a guy that probably gets by at a lower level of competition because he's so much more athletically gifted than most of the lineman he's facing, but he also had good performances against the major programs Temple faced the past two years as well like Penn State and UCLA, so it's not as if he would have been an average player had he played in the ACC or Big 12. But he probably got away more with being a raw player. I just don't see a guy that uses his hands very well at this point, and a technically sound NFL lineman would do better against him. But if he can improve his technique, he'll be a very difficult matchup because of his blend of strength and quickness, along with a very good motor. And that probably means he's your typical interior lineman that takes the better part of three years before he starts to live up to his potential. Even if he develops only average technique, he'll still be an above average to good starter in either scheme, something like a Chris Canty. He just may not be the caliber of player that can dominate games like a Dockett can from time to time.


Wilkerson would play inside in Atlanta, and has the potentail to be a very good player there. He's raw, and would have to work in the rotation early on. But by his third season if he's improved his technique, he can start to become a more consistent impact defender. He's the type of guy that probably won't get a ton of sacks, but if he plays inside a good edge rusher, he'll be able to clean up plays if/when passers are able to step up in the pocket, something he did well at Temple. And his ability to be disruptive presence and good motor means that he should be a good run defender down the line as well.


Wilkerson has first round potential, but because I don't think he has elite upside and has a bit longer length to impact than other prospects, he's probably a guy that should go in the late portion of the first.

1-poor, 2-weak, 3-above average, 4-very good, 5-elite

Strength: 4.0
Point Of Attack: 3.0
Quickness: 4.0
Pass Rush: 3.5
Motor: 4.0
"Vincere scis, Hannibal, victoria uti nescis" -- Maharbal, 216 B.C.E.

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