NEXT ON OUR SCOUTING REPORTS IS DEMARVIN LEAL. CHECK OUT SOME OF OUR OTHER SCOUTING REPORTS BELOW
- Height: 6’4”
- Weight: 290 Lbs
- College: Texas A&M
- Year: Junior
- Position: Defensive Line
DeMarvin Leal is one of the most interesting and versatile defensive lineman available in the 2022 NFL Draft.
From San Antonio, Texas, DeMarvin Leal attended Judson High School in Converse, Texas. In high school Leal was an Army All-American and named in Dave Campbell’s Texas First Team. Labelled a 5 star recruit by 247 Sports, Leal was recruited as the #2 prospect out of Texas and #16 in America.
Having his heart set on staying in Texas, Leal committed to Texas A&M. As an Aggie, Leal played in all 13 games during his freshman season. Then, during his sophomore season in 2020, Leal had 37 total tackles, 2.5 sacks, 1 interception, 1 forced fumble and 1 fumble recovery.
Improving again in 2021, Leal has set up his run at the NFL Draft in style.
DeMarvin Leal has been applauded throughout his career for his athleticism and versatility. He possesses the ability to line up anywhere along the line of scrimmage and will be able to play in any defensive scheme. Leal is an exceptional interior rusher who can get after the quarterback and rush the passer in both 4-3 and 3-4 schemes.
Leal’s athletic profile is able to translate to whatever assignment he is given. He has been used diversely in the A&M defence and has the strength, size and power to line up through the middle. But, also has the explosiveness and speed to work the outside.
Putting all this together, Leal will be one of the top players in the 2022 NFL draft.
Watch the video below which shows Leal’s combination of power and explosiveness.
DeMarvin Leal is a player who offers immense versatility. He can play defensive end and defensive tackle. It’s his ability to fit into any defensive scheme that will make him so valuable. It’s not only Leal’s ability to lineup across the defensive front, but his ability to thrive and be productive at each position.
Combining his size, strength and speed, DeMarvin Leal excels on passing downs. He has exceptional arm length which allows him to have a diverse pass rush plan and a good armoury of counter moves and skills which allow Leal to win at the point of attack.
Where Leal is able to have the most success is with his mobility. His hand movement and footwork are exceptional. He has fantastic lateral quickness and can pull across the line. Leal’s active hands mean he can be disruptive in the run game, while his footwork gives him great balance through contact. He can put offensive lineman in the ground for fun and his functional play strength is excellent.
Overall Leal is an explosive athlete. He is super quick off the line and his initial burst is impactful and disruptive. Now his straight-line speed may not be the best, but it is Leal’s energetic motor that adds to his overall play speed. Leal plays at the speed and explosion of a man much smaller than him and his ability to be such a smooth runner at his size is impressive.
Leal plays with a great athletic profile. He is able to pair the size of an interior defensive tackle with the speed and explosiveness off an edge rusher. He has to be accounted for on every play and due to having multiple assignments will have to be watched closely by all offensive lineman.
- Add Weight
The problems with players who offer so much versatility is that they can be a jack of all trades, but a master of none. That is where we currently sit with Leal.
Viewed by many as more of a defensive tackle, it will be likely that he will need to add some weight when transitioning to the NFL. Adding some mass to his frame should help his lower body strength. Which in turn will allow him to be more successful in the run game. There can be a fine line between bulking up and losing some athleticism, which he will need to toe.
While Leal has a diverse pass rush plan, he could still work on the deployment of his counter moves. He can get caught engaged with offensive lineman for too long; not able to shake them off. Adding weight will help him create better leverage. More of a plan of how to use his length to his advantage will also need to be worked on to avoid getting absorbed by bigger NFL linemen.
Leal also doesn’t have top tier production. Which could be down to the fact that he is being asked to complete multiple different assignments at multiple positions. Meaning he isn’t able to perfect his craft. It could also be that he lacks the flexibility and twitch to rush consistently from the outside.
The answer is a bit of both. Leal isn’t an outside rushing specialist and hasn’t always been used to his maximum efficiency while at A&M.
DeMarvin Leal isn’t going to give you the extreme pass rush prowess of a pure edge rusher. But, what he does give a team is the ability to significantly rush the passer from the inside.
As a versatile weapon across the defensive line, defensive coordinators will be excited to get a player like Leal into their team. His ability to play in any scheme, be successful and produce is a high commodity. Leal will be a solid and reliable NFL player.
Leal is highly unlikely to be a player who puts up double digit sacks year after year in the NFL. What he will give is a consistent and solid foundation to a defensive line.
Although Leal has been productive at every position across the defensive front, his production isn’t at the top level. It won’t be something that worries NFL teams and evaluators, but scouts will need to decide why that may be.
Disruption, toughness, physicality, speed and pass rush through the interior is where Leal will win in the NFL.
Feature Image Credit: 247Sports
Video Credit: Prospects & ESPN College Football on YouTube