Most NFL analysts aren’t very excited about the group pass rushers available in the 2021 NFL Draft. Cris Collinsworth, however, believes the best defensive prospect in this year’s class is actually an edge rusher.
On Tuesday, Collinsworth tweeted that Jaelan Phillips from Miami is the best defensive player in this year’s draft.
“I know about the concussions, but Miami’s Jaelan Phillips is the best defensive player in this year’s draft,” Collinsworth wrote. “I don’t even think it is close.”
Collinsworth’s tweet has already sparked an interesting debate on social media.
I know about the concussions, but UMiami’s @CanesFootball Jaelan Phillips is the best defensive player in this year’s draft. I don’t even think it is close.
— Cris Collinsworth (@CollinsworthPFF) April 13, 2021
Phillips is a complicated prospect to say the least. On the field, he’s one of the best players this draft class has to offer. He’s an explosive player who can really get after the opposing quarterback on a consistent basis.
Unfortunately, Phillips’ medical history might scare away a few teams. He chose to medically retire in December of 2018 due to all the injuries he sustained during his time at UCLA.
Phillips eventually resumed his career at Miami and proved that he’s an elite playmaker, but that doesn’t just erase his past.
Although he’s expected to hear his name called during the first round of the upcoming draft, Phillips may have to wait until the end of the round before he comes off the board.