The Bucs have maintained throughout the NFL Draft season that they wanted to add some pass rush ability to their defensive line. Pro Bowl nose tackle Vita Vea is known for his run defense as well as being an above average pass rusher. He notched a career-high four sacks last year.
But beyond that there isn’t much juice on the Bucs interior. Both Will Gholston and Rakeem Nunez-Roches hang their hats on their ability to stop the run.
Enter newly drafted defensive lineman Logan Hall. At 6-foot-6 and 283 pounds, Hall is tall and lean. He combines several favorable traits that allow him to consistently pressure quarterbacks and give offensive linemen fits. Let’s take a look at three plays from his game against Southern Methodist to illustrate what Hall is capable of at his best.
Play One: Creating Favorable Angles To Get Blockers Off Base
Hall is number 92 standing up over the left guard’s outside shoulder as a 4i.
Hall is able to fire off the line and fake the guard to his outside. When the guard tries to land a punch he quickly slides back inside. This catches the guard leaning and allows Hall to get onto his right shoulder. Hall then takes advantage by quickly utilizing a swim move to blow right past him.
Play Two: Hand Usage And Adaptability
This time Hall is lined up over the center’s left shoulder as a 1-tech.
On this next play, Hall flashes a little bit of everything. Right out of his stance the center tries to get a punch on him to slow him down. Hall reads the line protection as a four-man slide and works in the opposite direction. Then he is able to easily slap away the center’s hand as he moves both up field and laterally to the right guard.
As the guard starts to pick Hall up, he too tries to land a punch. Once again Hall swipes his hand away and quickly gets to the guard’s outside shoulder. Next, Hall lands a punch of his own and extends his right arm into the guard’s chest. This creates an element of control as he moves up-field towards the quarterback. Finally, as his pass rush lane gets closed off by the crashing edge rusher, Hall quickly adapts and counters with a spin move that allows him meet the quarterback, who was trying to move up in the pocket.
Play Three: Burst Combined With Flexibility
This time, Hall is lined up as a 3-tech over the right guard.
This play really shows Hall’s upside in terms of his burst off the line. As the guard and center try to get into their sets, both are sliding right in an effort to help the right tackle. Hall is able to quickly get to the center’s landing spot before the center due to his mental awareness to identify the slide and his jump. In doing so, he has created a very small gap between the center and the guard. The center can only try to reach block, he knife’s his way between the two. This takes incredible flexibility to be able to maneuver through the gap laterally without losing speed vertically. Once through the gap and past the blockers, he is able to align his hips with the quarterback and close quickly.
Hall is not without opportunities to get better in his game. But these plays show you what the high-end level of play he can bring to the Bucs pass rush. If he is able to consistently harness these talents he can be an incredibly gifted rusher who lines up next to Vea for years to come.