Name: R.J. McIntosh
School: Miami (FL)
Weight: 293 pounds
Data Courtesy CFB at Sports-Reference.com
Gerald McCoy, DT Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Weight: 295 pounds
The biggest dark horse of the 2018 NFL Draft might be R.J. McIntosh. The reason that Miami’s defensive MVP has slipped into the second round of most mock drafts is his decision to leave college a year early. McIntosh is also part of a very crowded defensive tackle class, but I believe his 2017 performance alone has the ability to raise his stock in this year’s draft.
The very first thing that is going to jump out at you when watching the tape on McIntosh is his initial get-off. His first step makes him one of the most agile defensive tackles in this year’s draft. His mobility will allow him to be disruptive at the 3-technique in the NFL. With the agility McIntosh has, he is able to flash quickly and end plays before they even begin.
There are very specific traits that Dan Quinn is searching for when he targets his defensive players, which is why some players i.e. Keanu Neal get drafted much earlier than most people expect. McIntosh is one of those players that could easily fall into this category. The Falcons will be looking for a run-stuffing defensive tackle who can also find ways to disrupt the quarterback, in this case, it could easily be the star out of Miami.
A strength that can often be overlooked is how high a player’s motor is on the field. This is determined by the amount of effort a player gives on each play. McIntosh is someone who gives significant effort on every single down. Not only is his effort at the top of his class, the angles he takes to create those tackles for loss do not go unnoticed. Additionally, his vision allows him to make these plays before the offense can even get started.
McIntosh, who is one of 47 prospects that the Falcons have met with so far is definitely a player on their radar. There is often a term described as a “Dan Quinn guy” and to put that into context it is a player who plays with a specific playing style. They have grit, a high motor, speed, athleticism, and have a brotherhood mentality. Dan Quinn always references the quote “Do your job so your brother next to you can do his” and he wants players on his team who live by that. To me, McIntosh is more than a run-stuffing defensive tackle at the 3-technique. He has more than enough ability to line up next to Grady Jarrett and cause disruption up field.
This doesn’t have to be the move that the Falcons make on day one, but it definitely allows them to get creative with their selections if they are serious about drafting the star defensive tackle out of Miami.