NEXT ON OUR SCOUTING REPORTS IS JALEN CARTER. CHECK OUT OUR OTHER 2023 NFL DRAFT SCOUTING REPORTS HERE
- Height: 6’ 3”
- Weight: 310lbs
- College: Georgia
- Year: Junior
- Position: Defensive Lineman
- Number: 88
Jalen Carter was recruited to Georgia from Apopa, Florida in 2019. Depending on your ranking of choice he was. 247sports 5-star recruit and an ESPN 4-star recruit. Carter’s versatility and athletic ability were certainly on show whilst in high school – playing defensive tackle, tight end and punter for the Blue Darters. His senior year saw him register an impressive 12 sacks from the defensive interior position.
Carter’s ability has seen him see the field early for the Georgia Bulldogs. This is despite the array of talent on the defensive front they have had at their disposal during his first 2 years on campus. He started 2020 as a rotational player, often making the field in 2nd and 3rd down situations but made the most of his time on the field to shine. 2021 showed an uptick in production, despite still being behind Devonte Wyatt in the pecking order, with 37 tackles and 3 sacks logged. He was also named 2nd team all-SEC in the coaches vote, despite not being the main starter.
- Power & Explosiveness
- Mobility & flexibility
- High motor
Jalen Carter has the ability to be a chess piece along the defensive line. The Bulldogs have used him in multiple positions to make the best use of his assets including 1,3 and 5 tech as well as 2i. With Jordan Davis now onto greener pastures, I would not be surprised to see him line up over the nose if the situation warranted it.
Given the explosive nature of Carter, he is able to overpower opponents in one on one situations. That suddenness to Carter’s game can see him best offensive lineman before they have had the opportunity to react and counter.
For a player of his dimensions, Carter is very flexible in the lower half of his body. He can move side to side with ease and fluidity, as well as having ample speed to cover ground and chase down plays when needed.
Carter plays hot from the first to last minute, he does not take plays off and is consistently looking to penetrate gaps and break up plays before they have a chance to develop.
- Double teams
- Hand placement
- Run defence
At times, Carter has struggled when double-teamed, looking much more effective when penetrating single gaps. With the heavy hitters alongside him on the Bulldogs’ defensive line now in the pro ranks, it will be interesting to see how Carter handles the inevitable double teams that will come his way as the 2022 season progresses.
He may prove to be more productive on one of the wider spots (ie 3) where he has more room to manoeuvre rather
Carter’s sudden burst and explosiveness often leaves opponents on the back foot, however, when he does not overwhelm them suddenly he can leave his chest exposed and allow savvy interior offensive linemen to get hands-on him and shut him down
It is probably on the harsh side to list run defence as a weakness in Carter’s game, its more of a case of ‘need to see more’ as he has not played nearly as many run defence snaps as passing downs – I expect him to be more than adequate over the course of the 2022 season.
The Georgia Bulldogs have a star on their hands in Jalen Carter and everyone knows it. It is not a stretch to say that, despite gifting the NFL 3 first-round defensive lineman in Devonte Wyatt, Jordan Davis and number 1 overall pick Travon Walker, the best Bulldog lineman stayed in school this year.
Although teams will inevitably look at Quarterback at the top of draft pickings, it is fairly certain that Carter is going to be a top 10, and possibly even top 5, pick come the last Thursday in April.
How good of a prospect is Jalen Carter? Let us know over on Twitter @NinetynineYards
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Image Credit: 247Sports
Video Credit: Prospects on YouTube