by Ryan Myers
Photo courtesy of Tennessee 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 - Tennessee, Edge Rusher, Tyler Baron
Name - Tyler Baron
Pos - DE
Team - Tennessee
HT/WT - 6’5” 260 lbs.
Born - 10/22/2001
Home - Knoxville, TN
Tyler Baron played his first three years of high school football at The Ensworth School in Nashville before transferring to Knoxville Catholic High School for his senior year in 2019. In his junior season, he made 46.5 tackles, 10.5 TFL and 2.5 sacks, earning 2018 Nashville Area Division II East/Middle All-Region Team honors. His best season, however, came in his senior year when he transferred to Knoxville Catholic and made 105 tackles, 22 TFL and nine sacks. This earned him a 2019 Tennessee DII-AAA All-State selection. Over his high school career, he earned 4-star recruit ratings from ESPN, 247Sports, and Rivals.com. He chose to stay close to home and play at Tennessee, choosing them over several other power 5 offers.
In his first season with Tennessee, Baron played in all 10 games but did not start any of them. In his limited snaps, he made 21 tackles, 3 TFL, and 1 sack. Over his next two seasons, he earned more playing time, but was still not a full time starter. He played in all 26 games and had 8 starts (5 in 2021 and 3 in 2022). Over these two years, he made 52 tackles, 13.5 TFL, and 6.5 sacks. In these years, he proved himself as one of the best pass rushers on Tennessee's roster, and earned himself a starting role in his senior season this year.
So far this season, Baron has started all 8 games and recorded 19 tackles, 6 TFL, and 5 sacks. He is on pace to blow his career highs out of the water and has cemented himself as one of the best pass rushers not only in the SEC, but in the entire country.
Baron’s game revolves around his strength, versatility and overall athletic ability off the edge. He gets a great push on most plays while staying low to the ground and driving his blocker backwards with his quickness off the line. He is also a matchup nightmare for tight ends when they are asked to block or chip him. He is versatile and athletic enough to fit into a 3-4 scheme or a 4-3. He uses his length well and has strong hands to get around one-on-one blocks. His overall athletic ability and his high-motor style of play help him make plays using lateral movement or by bull rushing through the line.
Baron may be athletic, but his ability to chase down ball carriers has been questionable as he is not as fast as most when it comes to following ball carriers throughout plays. He also tends to be lazy when it comes to this unless behind the line of scrimmage. He is also questionable in open-field situations and has been easily shaken by running backs on the edge.
Tyler Baron's quickness and dominance around the line of scrimmage along with his ability to move very well will draw interest when draft day comes. But he will need to improve his play away from the rush to be a viable pro project. No doubt he can make the next level, but he will need to turn up the motor a bit in plays away from the backfield.
Draft 412 Draft Prediction - 5th round or 6th round