Powerhouse Seeking Position: Tyson Alualu

Hater culture is rampant. Blame the internet if you wish, hate on it if you must, but individuals devoted to the downfall of others, that suckle on failure's sour teat with greedy mouths and jagged teethe, are as old as man --old as endeavor. Work hard, extend yourself, take a risk, and there's always strangers to spit on your effort. People that savor the misery of others more than they ever could their own meager accomplishments.

The NFL Draft births experts, but it fattens haters. Most draft picks fail. Even most first round draft picks fail in light of expectations. World beaters beaten; today's Aaron Curry tomorrow's Brian Bozworth.

You won't find any hate here. I love this defensive tackle class and think it could be the greatest defensive tackle class in the history of the NFL. Ok, hyperbole always has a home during draft time too. Greatest ever, any hater will hiss, is hype overripe to fall. Let's remove the greatest and settle for great.

So I start this year's run of tape review with defensive tackles. Pete Carroll is a 4-3 under proponent, and he inherits a talented roster replete with potential. One position it's never properly filled though is three-tech or under tackle. It needs another body beside Brandon Mebane to rip through single blocks and shorten clocks, widen rushing lanes and test the tensile strength on a few pretty boy's mouth guards. It needs someone that lives in opponent's backfields.

Gerald McCoy and Ndamukong Suh are sensations. Word's out about the Beast named Suh, but McCoy is nearly his equal and a year younger. Talent like them is amazing and if Seattle mortgages the offense another season to acquire one, well I'll just toughen up an accept it a sack at a time. But the smarter play is to grab elite talent on offense and see which member of this monster tackle class falls.

I have a feeling Tyson Alualu could be had in the third. Kid has a profile I absolutely love. Alu2 played end in California's 3-4 system, but from his size, a thick-cut 6'2"/291, to his build, he wears his weight in his legs and core, to his game, Alu dominates at the point, but has in-the-box agility and cannot edge rush in a traditional NFL sense, he's an NFL defensive tackle. And if not a special one, if not a generational talent like McCoy or Suh, then a damn fine one that could be a centerpiece player in a top ten defense. Well, maybe.

I scouted the Poinsettia Bowl. Alu was pitted against NFL draft prospect Zane Beadles. Or, on some snaps he was. In six plays, Alualu played ROLB, LDE, LOLB, RDE, RDE and LILB. He was a weapon positioned for maximum wreckage. You know how these matchups work: two men enter, one leaves without his future.

1. 1st and 10 at UTAH 19Eddie Wide rush for 3 yards to the Utah 22.

Alu is positioned at right outside linebacker in a 3-3 front, or what Carroll would call stand up defensive end. Quaint. He gets a good jump off the snap and powers into freshman tight end Kendrick Moeai. He stands up and then forces back Moeai, narrowing the hole, but otherwise doesn't factor.

2. 2nd and 7 at UTAH 22Jordan Wynn pass complete to David Reed for 3 yards to the Utah 25.

Alu is in a three point at left defensive end in a 4-2 look. He gets another good jump, pushes back and then swims through right tackle Tony Boogerstom (nee Bergstrom) and forces a dump off before tackling Wynn after the pass.

3. 3rd and 4 at UTAH 25Jordan Wynn pass complete to Eddie Wide for 45 yards to the Cal 30 for a 1ST down.

Standing again, still on the left, Alu is a little slow off the snap, attempts edge pressure but does not factor as the motioning Wide sprints behind the line and receives a shovel pass for 45.

4. 1st and 10 at CAL 30Jordan Wynn pass incomplete.

Our epic matchup is on, as Alu is finally face to face with Beadles on the defensive right. Cal is in a traditional 3-4 look and Alu is in 4-tech alignment. He bulls through Beadles, disrupts play action and forces Wynn scrambling to his right. Alu stumbles in pursuit and is little threat to catch up and pressure the scrambling quarterback from behind.

5. 2nd and 10 at CAL 30Eddie Wide rush for a loss of 1 yard to the Cal 31.

Same Cal look same Alu alignment same matchup against Beadles and the same result, as Alu stands up Beadles, rips through as Beadles pulls into the second level, and worms through and behind Wide on the read option, wrapping securely and hip tossing Wide to the turf.

6. 3rd and 11 at CAL 31Jordan Wynn sacked for a loss of 3 yards to the Cal 34.

Alualu is standing, just off the nose tackles hip, in a 3-3 look that has him playing left inside linebacker. He shows a couple teasing sprinter steps, faking blitz, and then, at the snap, turns his hips and runs into a hook zone. He moves well, and Wynn sacks himself scrambling out of bounds.

First drive concluded.

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