6 defensive ends the Vikings could pick in the 2021 NFL Draft
By Nik Edlund
Gregory Rousseau (Miami)
Height: 6-foot-7 | Weight: 265 pounds
2019 Stats (opted out in 2020):
- 54 tackles (19.5 for a loss)
- 15.5 sacks
- 2 forced fumbles
Gregory Rousseau has been a bit of a polarizing prospect amongst Vikings fans and really when it comes to the draft in general.
The guy has the prototypical build for a 4-3 defensive end with his 6-foot-7, 265-pound frame. His arms go on forever and he’s got a long, lean build that he uses to bend around and overpower would-be blockers.
The reason that the topic of drafting Rousseau is so divisive is that he’s only had one productive season in college. That season was extremely impressive, however, as he had 15.5 sacks and 19.5 tackles for a loss.
He was dominant, and he used his long arms to not only latch on to quarterbacks and bring them to the turf, but to swat passes, and bat the ball out of passers’ hands.
Rousseau is also better against the run than one would expect, and he could develop into one of the more well-rounded defensive ends in the league.
Besides only having one productive season under his belt, the other concern when it comes to Rousseau is the fact he sat out the 2020 campaign. This makes him extremely hard to scout as NFL teams would’ve loved to see what he could have done after having his breakout season in 2019.
Rousseau is probably the closest thing in this draft to Danielle Hunter. There’s no doubt he’s a raw piece of clay that needs molding. But if Andre Patterson can do with him what he did to Hunter, then the Vikings could have two of the best young pass rushers in the league on their defensive line.