2019 Raiders Draft Prospect Profile
Name: Wyatt Ray
Position: Defensive End
School: Boston College
Weight: 257 pounds
Draft Projection: Day 3
In reviewing Ray’s tape, a few aspects of his rush set stand out. First, he maintains balance, even when the blocker attempts to cut. On top of that, those blocks do not slow him to a crawl in pursuit. Next, notice the versatility. Ray gets home with speed to the outside, loops into the middle or provides a bull that stuns. Granted, he does not brutalize with the bull rush, but he can string together quality moves together, which is the hallmark of any decent pass rusher.
Despite making his name as a pass rusher, Ray shows the knack for sliding under blocks and blowing up running plays. Additionally, he will funnel down the line to make the stop. When facing much larger linemen, there is no retreat in his game. With excellent footwork, Ray maneuvers around the slower tackle and forces the running to either bounce far to the perimeter or attempt a quick cut. Either way, they do not get away from him.
Again, with Ray, his game predicates on closing burst, not straight-line 40 speed. During his career in Chestnut Hill, he mastered the art of anticipation. By reading the head of the center and watching the for shoulders to see movement, his speed looks even faster with the ability to beat the tackle out of his stance. Once that occurs, Ray gets the corner and takes up residence in the backfield.
A heady player, Ray uses an above-average breakdown to gather and corral. With such a lengthy tackle radius, Ray covers area around the target. Most importantly, he does appear to want the highlight hit, rather take the safe and secure stop.
Although the Raiders will address the need for defensive ends earlier, Ray slides into a vital role. If you look at any successful team in recent memory, pass rush depth lends itself to long playoff runs. Granted, Ray may never reach double-digit sacks, he can operate in a rotational role. As a result, his early snaps may be fewer but nonetheless meaningful. Paul Guenther wants to rotate a slew of rushers. With offensive tackles wearing down during the game, a fresh end like Ray should net four to six sacks within the rotation.