by J.T. Toth
Photo courtesy of Black Shoe Diaries.
The NFL Draft talk never ends, and we are here at Draft 412 in an effort to keep you ready for the next set of gridiron stars. From today until draft night 2024, we will bring you mocks, profiles, team needs, and everything else related to the 2024 NFL Draft.
Today’s Spotlight - Penn State Edge Rusher, Adisa Isaac
Name- Adisa Isaac
Team- Penn State
HT/WT- 6’4” 254 lbs.
Home – Brooklyn, NY
Isaac claimed All-USA New York Defensive Player of the Year as a senior after he recorded 25 sacks, which set a Public Schools Athletic League record. Rated a consensus 4-star prospect by 247 Sports, Rivals, and ESPN, Rivals also ranked Isaac as the #1 prospect coming out of New York. Isaac picked Penn State over several other Division-1 offers.
Isaac played in 11 games as a true freshman, mostly during garbage time at the end of games and recorded 1.5 sacks in his limited action. As a sophomore, Isaac once again had 1.5 sacks playing in 9 games as a reserve edge rusher. In 2021, Isaac redshirted after he tore his Achilles tendon before the season started, making him a redshirt junior entering the 2022 season.
2022 was a bounce back year for Isaac. He started all 13 games at defensive end and recorded 28 tackles, 4 sacks, and 8 quarterback hurries. He was nominated for the College Sports Communicators Comeback Player of the Year.
Isaac plays with a high motor and never stops until the whistle blows. He’s an explosive, raw athlete who has the flexibility and fluidness to be a force. On the rush, he uses head fakes and quick jabs to set up offensive linemen and does a good job of setting the edge. He consistently plays at a low pad level, making it hard for linemen to get a good clean hit on him. He has several pass rushing moves he can use and starts off in a good wide base and explodes at the snap. He has a dependable inside move he uses at times when he has been getting the edge on prior plays.
Isaac plays with more finesse than power. He has to show to scouts that he is strong enough for the rigors of the NFL. As a pass rusher, he struggles at the point of attack and becomes too upright at times, allowing the linemen to get into his chest. He is still very raw and mechanically, he needs to work on his overall rush package, particularly needing to use his hands better to shed blockers.
For a player comparison, Draft 412 sees a lot of New England Patriots' Matthew Judon in the way Isaac plays the game. Both have a non-stop motor and the build is eerily similar.
Good pursuit speed
Athleticism and flexibility
Array of pass rushing moves
Use of hands needs improvement
2023 is a big season for Adisa Isaac and getting to play another full season on such a stout defense should only help his draft stock. If he can get sharper with his mechanics and handwork, Isaac could be an early 2nd day pick.
Draft 412- DRAFT PROJECTION- 2nd-3rd round