PFF scouting report: Ronald Blair, DE, Appalachian State

Thomas Maney and the PFF draft analysts break down the play of Appalachian State's Ronald Blair ahead of the 2016 NFL draft.

| 7 months ago
(Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)

(Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)

PFF scouting report: Ronald Blair, DE, Appalachian State

Below is the PFF draft profile for Appalachian State’s Ronald Blair, which incorporates PFF’s college grades and scouting intel from our team of analysts. To see all of PFF’s 2016 scouting reports, click here.

Position fit:
4-3 defensive end, 3-4 defensive end. Played inside on passing downs at times at App State

Stats to know:
• 13th overall grade in this class of 3-4 defensive ends and interior linemen; 27th in run defense
• Sixth-ranked pass rush grade (+24.9) with 8 sacks, 6 hits, 23 hurries
• No. 4 pass rush productivity rating in the class (10.2)
• Second-highest bench press among DL at combine with 32
• Just two penalties in more than 1,200 combined snaps over last two seasons

What he does best:
• Two years of production — top-six pass rush grade in both 2014 and 2015, graded above big name players including Henry Anderson and Grady Jarrett in 2014
• Wins inside and outside, not much bull rush – 52 percent of pressures came to outside, swim is go-to move.
• Maintains low pad level when setting the edge. Long arms, doesn’t always use length but very effective when he does
• Position-high run stop percentage at 13.8; 50 defensive stops were most of any edge or defensive lineman in the class

Biggest concerns:
• Competition level at App State, mostly beat up on lower-tier teams. Blair faced just two Power-5 teams (96 snaps) over the last two seasons. -0.2 grade against Michigan in 2014, +2.2 overall vs Clemson in 2015
• Quicker than fast and didn’t test particularly well (5.15 second 40-yard dash at combine). Won’t bend the edge or consistently win with speed outside. Lack of athleticism hurts him when closing in on ball carriers
• Can get caught by down blocks in run defense and knocked off balance trying to swim (for example, Clemson 3Q, 13:21)

Bottom line: Blair was a productive pass rusher over the last two seasons and a much-improved run defender in 2015. However, the competition level is a question. He played well against Clemson last season but didn’t face many NFL-caliber players otherwise. How will that translate to the NFL? Blair played mostly 3-4 DE in college but at his size is more likely an NFL edge player.

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