Malcom Brown & Eddie Goldman should be first rounders

FSU’s Eddie Goldman is destined for round one

The 2015 draft is going to be loaded with edge rushers. And yet we don’t hear that much about two key defensive tackle prospects.

That is going to change soon, presuming they declare.

Malcom Brown (DT, Texas) recently admitted he could be tempted to go pro — he has a wife and kids to provide for despite his tender age. Eddie Goldman (DT, Florida State) has enjoyed the kind of season that could propel him into the top-15. We saw a record number of underclassmen declare for this years draft. The NFL has become a race to the second contract where the big money is earned. Rather than persuade players not to turn pro early, the new CBA virtually encourages it.

Both players are former 5-star recruits. Goldman was rated as the #7 overall recruit by Rivals in 2012 — behind, among others, Dorial Green-Beckham and Shaq Thompson. Brown ranked at #26 — just ahead of Dante Fowler Jr and a few spots behind SPARQ demon Landon Collins. Understandably they were both coveted by all the major programs. Goldman visited Alabama and Auburn before choosing FSU. Brown drew interest from USC before opting for home-state Texas.

I’ve spent a bit of time over the last week or so studying both players. I don’t see any reason why they can’t work their way into top-20 consideration. Possibly higher.

Brown is the best 2015 eligible prospect nobody talks about. He has an ideal body type to play as a one or three technique. He’s squat at 6-2 but carries 320lbs with almost no bad weight. He’s built like a cannonball — winning with leverage and power. He’s difficult to move in the run game. Against Oklahoma he was all over the LOS — moving to end for a few snaps and working over the right guard stunting inside. He deflected passes, forced his way into the backfield. It was a terrific overall performance. Against BYU we see more of the same — he gets a couple of sacks and provides a rare bright spot in a miserable Texas performance.

He has 6.5 sacks for the season and 12.5 TFL’s. Texas has quietly established a decent run of interior pass rushers and Brown is the best since Lamarr Houston. He doesn’t have an exceptional get-off and this is an area for improvement. It’s what perhaps separates him from former top-15 picks like Sheldon Richardson and Aaron Donald. For that reason he might last a little longer in round one as a decent pass-rusher but better run stopper. He is capable of swiping away an interior linemen and getting into the backfield though. He can be productive.

One problem area could be arm length. It impacted Shariff Floyd’s stock. I’ve not seen any evidence of it being an issue but teams will take it seriously if he measures poorly. He manages to do a good job keeping blockers away from his pads because he uses leverage so well. Can he rip and swim effectively with shorter arms, extend to keep blockers at bay and avoid getting blocked out? It’ll take further study to make a firm conclusion there, but I really like Brown as a prospect. He has a legit shot to be an early pick.

Florida State have produced a number of overrated defensive linemen in recent years. I was never a big fan of Tank Carradine even before the ACL injury. Timmy Jernigan just looked really average. You could go back to Everette Brown too. So many players who flattered to deceive. Eddie Goldman is different.

You put on the tape and consistently his number jumps off the screen. He has the get-off that Brown lacks and he’s into the backfield with an initial quick step and the athleticism to catch a linemen off guard. He’s taller than Brown (6-3/6-4) and 315lbs — but again carries the weight well. He’s totaled four sacks in 2014 and eight TFL’s. He’s also a terrific run defender.

Goldman has no trouble plugging holes and remaining stout to shut down lanes. His speed off the snap works equally well here — having watched the Louisville and Clemson games again today he was forcing running backs to bounce outside with immediate penetration into the backfield. He’s pretty close to the complete interior defensive lineman.

I’m not convinced he’ll be quite the athlete Donald was this year. He has at least a decent chance of emulating Sheldon Richardson though — and should be good for a slot in the top-20 if he does turn pro. There just aren’t that many players who can line up in any down/distance and work the run and pass as well as Goldman. Effective interior pass rushers are like gold dust. Any chance you get to bring in a pocket-collapsing dynamo who makes life easier for the edge rushers should be taken. It was shocking to see Richardson last as long as he did in 2013.

Being an effective defensive tackle isn’t all about getting off a block and making it into the backfield. You can be equally useful pushing a center or guard back into the pocket. You need to be able to work across the line to stretch plays out. One of the great things about Brandon Mebane is his mobility to get across to a sideline to make a play. It’s not just about penetration and a clean swim move. It’s also about power and agility, even if you’re not constantly winning 1v1 battles. Both players excel in this area too.

Brown is a figurehead for Texas and might feel loyal enough to give Charlie Strong another year. Nobody would blame him if he headed for the NFL. Goldman might see FSU’s window closing after a year where they’ve flirted with multiple losses and yet remain undefeated. If Jameis Winston turns pro, he’ll leave a hole — however erratic he’s been this year. There’s also very little for Goldman to prove.

Sooner or later these two players are going to be talked about. People will rave about them. And they could easily go in the first round. They should do. The Seahawks could use another interior rusher and might look in this direction next April. They’ll be lucky to have a shot at either player.


  1. Ely

    To bad Sheldon Richardson wasn’t involved in the Percy deal. I would be curious to see what it would take to get him from Idzik given their need to stock pile draft picks and rebuild but I suppose the worst way to rebuild is to ship off one of your young good guys. ANyways…. enough dreaming, Great article Rob I will be monitoring these guys because I think DT while not the biggest need is probably top 3 or 4. Speaking of top needs. Are you still spit shining the article on DGB? I have been anxiously awaiting that one since you promised it last week 😉

    • Rob Staton

      Apologies it’s good to go I will probably post today or tomorrow.

  2. Alaska Norm

    I know you’re not as high on him as some but the more I see and hear about Danny Shelton the more I hope he is on the Seahawks list. He seems like the perfect fit to back up Mebane and work into the rotation. I’ve been clamoring for the big receiver but if we ended up getting Shelton in the first I would be stoked. I will be watching close during the senior bowl to see how he stacks up against top talent. He seems like a guy with a lot of upside, young, good motor, stout against the run and can push the pocket in passing situations. It’s early, but as of now I’m on the band wagon. I’m looking forward to your take on the guy after the senior bowl. From what I have read he looks like a possible low first round pick… right where the Seahawks will be slated.

    • CC

      I like Danny too – so athletic and we know Pete likes that!

      • Rob Staton

        The one concern I have with Shelton is he won’t test well at the size. If he’s going to go in R1 he’ll need to be a rare athlete. I’m not sure he is.

        • AlaskaHawk

          If we could get Shelton in the mid rounds that would be even better!

    • UKhawk

      I like Shelton but not in the 1st. Id rather have edge or interior rusher. For his flashes dominanc in some games, e I also see ones of him not being a factor. For example, in looking at centers I was impressed by Grasu at Oregon; check out the video of him vs Shelton where Danny is made to look pretty average

  3. Connor Jackson

    Wow. Comparing Eddie Goldman to Sheldon Richardson in any regard is high praise. Richardson was my dream pick for Hawks in 2013. Easley was my dream pick in 2014. Guess I’ve been craving for Seattle to take a DT going on three years now. I’ll have to turn on the tape of these two guys. Thanks Rob.

    • Rob Staton

      I prefer Richardson to Goldman, but they share some similar traits.

      • OZ

        I like Goldman’s strength. We’ll see what the Senior Bowl brings Rob, butt I think you are under evaluating Shelton.

  4. Volume 12

    Have to agree with Rob on the whole Danny Shelton as a 1st rd. Guy. Admittedly earlier in the season I really liked him in that spot as well, but yeah he just doesn’t seem special or unique enough to justify as a 1st rounder. Really like Eddie Goldman too. His arm length is pretty ridiculous for his size and position. And yeah I think Seattle should draft 2 dt’s. One early and one at the end of the draft. S

  5. Volume 12

    Damn! Accidentally hit the ‘submit comment’ button. Was going to say some late founders at dt that intrigue me are Southern Miss. dt Rakeem Nunez-Roches, Northern Iowa dt Xavier Williams (who might compare somewhat favorably to Goldman) and of course like alot of people on here Oklahoma dt Chuka Ndulue. And don’t know if he’ll declare or what his draft status is, but Oregon’s dl Reforest Buckner seems entirely unique, a little raw, and kinda ‘Seahawky’ at 6’7, 285-290 labs. but lean with excellent length.

  6. cha

    At the risk of sounding reactionary, Mebane’s injury throws the need for more DT depth into pretty stark relief. Frustrating that Marsh got hurt. Anything from Jesse Williams would be an absolute bonus at this point.

    Spilled milk: Jaye Howard looks like a solid contributor for the Chiefs.

    • Hay stacker509

      I thought we released Jesse Williams earlier in pre season or training camp?

  7. Ehurd

    Rob long time lurker and fan of your work.

    I don’t know if anyone is familiar with DT Terry Williams #54 out of ECU (6-1/353). Kid is very explosive and sudden for being as big as he is and is a load to move of the spot. Reminds me so much of Mebane.

    With Bang hurt and getting up there in age he looks like the perfect player who could help with depth and end up taking over at some point. Curious to hear what you guys think of him and his tape?

  8. Ehurd

    Here is another video of Terry Williams vs Lafayette.

    • UKhawk

      Love this guy, great tape vs VT….good spot

      • Volume 12

        Yeah big fan of terry Williams myself. Here’s the thing: in some tapes/videos he’s playing at like 320-325 and in others he’s at 350+. And if I remember correctly he’s more effective at the lower weight which makes sense. But if he can settle on a playing weight, then yeah dude is very intriguing.

  9. Jeff M.

    A big-bodied DT is definitely a need–realistically we may be looking at replacing multiple of Mebane, McDaniel, and Williams this off-season (depending on Bane’s recovery and whether he or McDaniel becomes a cap casualty) and all of them within the next two years…

    Luckily this looks like a pretty good year to be looking for that kind of player in the draft. Both of the guys in this post (if one falls to us in the late 1st) could probably play both 3-tech and 1-tech in the pros, and you also have Shelton, Jordan Phillips from Oklahoma, and Carl Davis from Iowa as 1-tech/5-tech options that likely end up in the top 3 rounds.

  10. Clayton


    Would you rather Seattle draft either Brown or Goldman, or spend big dollars in free agency to get Ndamukong Suh?

    • Rob Staton

      Brown or Goldman. I love Suh but I’d hate to think who they’d have to sacrifice to sign him.

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