by Ryan Myers
Photo courtesy of Duke Athletics.
At Draft 412, the NFL draft talk never ends. We will keep you ready for the next set of gridiron stars—from today and all the way until draft night 2024. We will bring you mock drafts, player profiles, individual team needs, and everything else you may need related to the 2024 NFL Draft.
Today’s Spotlight - Duke, Defensive Tackle, DeWayne Carter
Name- DeWayne Carter
Pos- Defensive Tackle
HT/WT- 6’3” 305 lbs.
Home – Pickerington, OH
DeWayne Carter is a 6’3", 305 pound defensive tackle out of Pickerington, Ohio. He attended Pickerington Central where he earned 3-star recruit ratings from ESPN, 247sports, and Rivals.com. In his senior year, Carter made 83 tackles, had 8 TFL and 5 sacks. This earned him first team all-state honors and he was also named the Columbus Dispatch’s All-Metro Team Defensive Player of Year.
In Carter’s first two years at Duke (2019 and 2020), he played in 14 games, 11 of which came in 2020. Over these two seasons, he recorded 13 tackles, 3 TFL, and 1 sack. In 2020, he was awarded the program’s Ace Parker Award, which is described by Duke as “an honor presented annually to an individual who displays unparalleled commitment to the team and overcomes adversity to contribute.”
Carter is currently a redshirt senior at Duke and has been named a team captain in each of his last three seasons (‘21, ‘22, and ‘23). He has also been a full time starter in each of these seasons and in the 2021 and 2022 campaigns, recorded 36 tackles each. He also had 18.5 TFL, 10 sacks, 7 passes defended, 7 forced fumbles, and 3 fumble recoveries over these two seasons. He earned Third-Team all ACC honors in 2021, and Second-Team all ACC in 2022. He has been a leader and a force on the Duke defense and so far in 2023, he has 15 tackles, 1 TFL and 2 passes defended.
Some upsides to DeWayne Carter’s game are his strength, his awareness, and his tackling. He uses his big frame and his strong lower half to play with great leverage and balance. He rarely goes to the ground, which is a great quality to have as both a pass rusher and run stopper on the interior. He has ball awareness at all times and makes the right reads on run plays in order to stop the runner in the backfield. His length and strength make him a good tackler and excels at wrapping up the ball carrier.
Some downsides to Carter’s game are his speed and his lack of versatility. He shows enough quickness to chase down the QB in the pocket, but when it comes to chase-down situations in the open field, Carter will struggle to keep up with most runners. He also lacks the skill set to be able to rush off the edge. He is best when blocking gaps on the inside as a run-stopper but does not possess the ability to set the edge and keep a runner in the backfield.
DeWayne Carter is a physical DT with an NFL-ready frame. His lower half is very strong, which allows him to play with great leverage, power and balance. He is persistent in the pass-rushing game and gets more sacks than one would think for a DT. He also uses his length and upper body strength to be a great tackler, rarely allowing runners to escape. His run-stopping ability is perhaps his best attribute and is more than adequate at pursuing the QB in the pocket. He may lack the speed and versatility to play on the edge or have consistent success in the open field, but he shows great talent on the inside when it comes to blocking gaps and reading run plays.
Draft 412 Draft Prediction- Round 5 or Round 6