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Scouting Report: Aaron Donald

With the offseason underway, it is draft/free agency season. In this segment, “Scouting Report”, I will be posting scouting reports of who I believe the Cowboys should covet in the 2014 NFL Draft. Stay tuned daily, as I will be writing a few per day.


In his senior year, Aaron Donald was a first team All-American at defensive tackle. He was also won the Nagurski & Outland trophies, which is the award for the nation’s most dominant defensive linemen.


- 6-0, 285 pounds

- 4.84 40-yard dash


- Leads the league country in sacks per game (1.6 per game) and tackles per loss per game (2.4 tackles per loss)


- Extremely quick for his size

- Excellent burst off the field

- Uses his hands tremendously

- Good at the point of attack

- Could be a great fit as a 3-technique in a 4-3

- Extremely productive

- Non-stop motor & effort


- His size

- Short arms

- Does not have many go-to moves

- Needs to put on weight for the NFL

The Fit

Donald is the smallest defensive tackle you will find in this year’s draft. Donald gets by with his athletic ability and his football IQ. But, he is extremely small for the defensive tackle position. If he is able to put on a good 10-20 pounds, his draft stock could go up. Donald is more like Sutton, instead of Nix III & McCullers. Donald is an interesting prospect. But the Cowboys do not enough time for a development project player like Donald. He would need to put on weight to be a contributor in this defense.

Scout Grade: 78/100

Follow me on Twitter for more 2014 NFL Draft/Free Agency Coverage: @ryanrattyDFW

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Tags: 2014 NFL Draft Aaron Donald Dallas Cowboys Jason Garrett Jerry Jones

  • straw walker

    Great draft pick for the Lions opposite Ziggy

    • Ryan Ratty

      Thanks for the comment. Ziggy is going to be a stud. I really like his game.

  • Jimmy DeMarco

    Love his athleticism, but definitely agree about his size. And also agree about no more projects for Dallas.
    This year’s draft for us, all impact players looking to make a statement.
    I’m just not sure he’s an every down player. Would he be a great depth player, absolutely.
    But there’s better players in the draft that we should be targeting before Donald.

    Good review Ryan.

    • Ryan Ratty

      Thanks for the comment, Jimmy. I would much rather have a contributor as soon as next year than a guy who will become a stud in 2016. Need contributors who can stay healthy.