Texas Christian Senior
Has a good motor that keeps working to the quarterback and ball. Has a decent first step and straight-line speed off the corner. Flashes some potential as a bull rusher. Comfortable playing with his hand off the ground. Plays with good recognition and discipline when defending the run. Plays outside contain and does a good job setting the edge and stringing out plays when teams run outside. Works well in pursuit, working laterally down the line. Takes decent angles in space and can make stops on the backside pursuit. Shows ability to make stop at the point of attack.
Undersized for an end and gets pushed around at times against bigger tackles. At times can be pushed off the ball by the tight end at the point of attack. Doesn't really show any pass rush moves, and if he doesn't beat you with his speed he's not going to win. Doesn't quite know how to use his hands to disengage. Tries to run around blocks. Doesn't have the explosive first step to really challenge the corner. Not comfortable working in coverage.
Daniels looked like he was poised to carry the mantle for Jerry Hughes as a senior, and while his production did increase, it was clear that he's a player that was nowhere in Hughes class as a pass rusher. A two-year starter that combined for 89 tackles, 23 for loss, and 12 sacks in those years. Daniels is a guy that flashes potential to move to linebacker after playing defensive end for TCU the past two years. But he's a work in progress.
Daniels plays with enough instincts and recognition vs. teh run to think he can get by there. He needs to do a better job at the point of attack, but that's an area he can improve at in time. The main issue with him as he likely converts to linebacker is playing in coverage. He's a decent pass rusher, but doesn't have the speed or burst off the corner to think that's he's going to be anything more than a 2 or 3 sack guy as a starter. He's effective more due to his motor than his speed. So he'll likely be asked to play in coverage, and he doesn't have the speed, hips, or experience to think he'd be anything more than a below average for your typical NFL tight end. So in the end, it seems like Daniels is a guy that is going to have to shine on special teams to stick in the pros. His lack of height and size limits his potential as a defensive end, so unless he puts on another 10-20 pounds and gets stronger as a run defender, then he's not going to impact there. And even if he did, he would be just an average No. 4 rotation guy at best. So in the end, if Daniels can impact on special teams he stands a chance of lasting a few summers in the pros. Otherwise, he's probably at best a practice squad candidate for a 3-4 team that likes his motor.
Daniels is not a good fit here in Atlanta. He is a camp body that can push for time and a practice squad role as an end, but again unless the Falcons fall in love with his motor, he's not going to last. He just doesn't have enough burst to offer much as a pass rusher, and with his need to bulk up to be able to better defend the run won't help him in that area.
Daniels doesn't have the upside or ability to merit being drafted, but he's worth a look in camp for some 3-4 team.
1-poor, 2-weak, 3-above average, 4-very good, 5-elite
Point of Attack: 2.5
Pass Rush: 3.0
"Vincere scis, Hannibal, victoria uti nescis" -- Maharbal, 216 B.C.E.