2019 NFL Draft Prospect Report: Jerry Tillery

Picture Credit: Getty Images

Picture Credit: Getty Images

Name: Jerry Tillery

Position: DT

School: Notre Dame

Listed Height: 6’6

Listed Weight: 295

Strengths: Tillery has a long, yet chiseled frame with a vast amount of potential to thicken. Has an explosive first step for his size and his initial twitch poses problems for interior offensive lineman. He can be incredibly effective on slants and stunts due to his plus athleticism. His above average ankle flexion and burst allows him to be effective when moving laterally. He plays with an exceptionally hot motor, as that plus his ability in space contribute to his ability to chase down ball carriers (even from the backside). Tillery has a vast array of hand moves and counters at his disposal, such as the club-rip, swim, push-pull, and bull rush. His ability to stack blocks with his length allows him to hold up at the point of attack, while he also possesses the counters to get free from an O-Lineman’s grasp. When his hands and initial burst are put together, he dominates the line of scrimmage with consistent knock back and TFL production. Has a stout anchor and rarely can he be seen dropping it. He often has a plan on passing downs, which contributes to his ability to counter OT movements. He is a reliable tackler who can wrap up at the point of contact and finish violently.

Weaknesses: The main thing holding Tillery back from being an elite prospect is consistency. He flashes elite hand usage, however on a considerable amount of snaps he struggles with timing and placement. Can sometimes be seen with an incomplete lockout, as his elbow can still be seen bent considerably, which diminishes any length advantage. Even though he possesses a vast array of counters, he doesn’t always deploy them when in position to do so. His pad level can rise after his first step, which gives up control of the chest and negates any momentum he garnered. His overall hip flexibility could stand to be improved, which as of now limits his versatility on the outside. He was suspended for the Fiesta Bowl as a freshman due to unspecified violation of team rules. Tillery will have to answer to some character concerns.

Overview and Insights: Tillery has an impressive physical stature that features plus athleticism, a hot motor, polished hands, and the ability to dominate if he can put all of those things together. However, right now he is more of a flash player with elite upside if used properly. Tillery projects to an interior pass rush role initially at the next level, and his overall potential is limitless.

Round Projection: Early to Mid 2nd

Ideal Fits: Chargers, Titans, Patriots

Pro Comparison: Brent Urban

Scout: Nathan Papandrea

Nathan Papandrea