For years now fans have speculated when the Ravens could move on from their hulking defensive tackle Brandon Williams. With the 2021 NFL Draft less than a week away, let’s take a look at a potential replacement for the run-stuffer.
The particular player I am looking at today is DT Tyler Shelvin from LSU. At 6-foot-2 and 350 pounds, Shelvin is the perfect size to play 0-technique in a 3-4 defense — where he would match up against the opposing center and typically responsible for both A-gaps. These players are usually shorter and stout as it is imperative for them to maintain good pad level and anchor the middle of the line, often clearing the way for other players such as inside linebackers to make a play in the running game. Shelvin did just that during his time with the Tigers.
This first clip shows Shelvin’s run-stuffing ability. Shelvin fires off the line and launches into the C, pushing him back at will. Notice how Shelvin stands the lineman up, keeping his eyes in the backfield to see which gap the running back could take before disengaging and making the tackle. This is a textbook example of a nose tackle doing his job against the run.
Some Tyler Shelvin reps are fun because the lad is built like an F450 pic.twitter.com/ki5qr4BhzO— Connor Rogers (@ConnorJRogers) April 12, 2021
This next clip shows Shelvin’s incredible speed for a man his size. Shelvin once again fires off the line, quickly getting past the lunging C before bouncing off another lineman on the play and making the tackle on the running back.
LSU’s Tyler Shelvin is 6-3 346 pounds!— Damian Parson (@DP_NFL) January 5, 2021
A man this size shouldn’t have the get off this quick. He pops off the ball, but it’s the quick swim to shed the center!
He gives me Vince Wolfork vibes. A 2-gapping IDL w/pocket collapsing capabilities. #CRFB #NFLDraft2021 pic.twitter.com/n4rddp8iB2
Next up is a clip showing Shelvin withstanding a double team to still make a play on the running back.
Tyler Shelvin’s NFL comp is a piece of concrete from the Vet pic.twitter.com/gLhVfaVwXg— Ben Fennell (@BenFennell_NFL) January 25, 2021
While Shelvin is considered a one-trick pony right now (stopping the run), he has flashed the ability to push the pocket in the passing game as well. He will almost certainly not be a true threat as a pass-rusher at the next level, however, and will likely instead be a two-down player. Due to his size, Shelvin was unable to stay on the field for too many snaps in a row at LSU, an issue that will most likely present itself in the NFL as well.
Shelvin will have to continue to work on keeping his weight in check as well. Shelvin once weighed in at 390 pounds with the Tigers and was even suspended for two weeks for failing to keep his weight under control. Working with NFL trainers should make this an easier task for Shelvin to stay on top of.
Shelvin is expected to be drafted in the third or fourth round.