Margus Hunt is a very interesting player. Very very interesting. He’s a world class track and field (well, pretty much just field) athlete who came to the U.S. to be coached in that pursuit. When scholarships were removed for track athletes at SMU, his coach suggested this behemoth of a man take up football. He’s now a starter in SMU’s 3-4 defense.
He has tons of raw ability and a perfect frame for the position, but I would like to see him in a Jason Jones role. As we all know his and Alan Branch’s contracts are up at the end of the season, so that could make DT the sexy pick this year (barring Scruggs or Howard stepping up in a big way). Hunt does some really incredible things on the football field. Watching his tape, I see him knifing gaps like no-one else. He gets so skinny through holes and he hauls some ass. He has very long arms and huge strong hands (much like Jason Jones). He’s fairly explosive off the snap. Not an elite first step, but he’ll catch opponents off guard now and again.
Hunt lacks many pass rush moves, but has a nice inside knife ability. He has all the potential in the world, it just depends on how he uses it. Oh yeah, did I mention this kid ran a 4.7 before the first time he stepped on a football field? Despite his enormous 82 inch wingspan (got me droolin’) he benched 225 pounds 35 times and could turn that into upwards of 40 by the time he gets to the combine. He’s also a record setting kick blocker. He gets miraculous amounts of pressure for the scheme he plays in. No known injuries.
One issue is he really struggles to keep consistent pad levels. This leads to him getting blown off the ball by run blockers and he will be man-handled by NFL road graders if he doesn’t fix these issues. Hunt seems to lack ideal strength at the point of attack, which is probably due to his consistently poor pad level. He has decent closing speed, but he seems to get one hand on QBs and they just get away from him a lot. He doesn’t look like he has a consistent motor (he’s more like a Plymouth), but this could be due to his lack of experience. He rarely looks ‘lost’ on the field, but at the same time doesn’t always look like he has a comprehensive grasp of his duties or the play.
Another concern I have is that perhaps he isn’t all that dedicated to football. He hasn’t even played for four years. Some players his age (he’s 26) have been playing for four times that long! Speaking of his age, that’s another concern. But, hey, if an under-talented 28-year-old Brandon Weeden can go in the first round, why couldn’t a supremely talented Margus Hunt? Personally, I think he will be a first round pick, just because of how much of a freak athlete he is.
He fits in well with the Seahawks defensive scheme, because he’s kind of a tweener-3-4-DE/4-3-DT/DE type and we run a 4-3 look with 3-4 personnel. He would find an instant home in the nickel package and would be valued more highly on this team than others because of our obsession with turnovers, especial-teamly on special teams (see what I did there?). Overall I definitely wouldn’t mind seeing Hunt in Blue, Gray and Green, but at the right price. I wouldn’t want him in the first round. If he falls to the second I say snatch him up with a quickness. He’s got a VERY high ceiling.