Drue Chrisman, P, Ohio State – NFL Draft Player Profile

    Since 1963, 155 punters have been drafted to the NFL. That’s right, punters are prospects too. Can Ohio State punter Drue Chrisman join their ranks as he heads to the 2021 NFL Draft?

    Drue Chrisman NFL Draft Profile

    • Position: Punter
    • School: Ohio State
    • Current Year: Senior
    • Height: 6’3″
    • Weight: 222 pounds

    Tony Pauline’s Drue Chrisman Scouting Report

    Positives: Versatile punter who was a four-year starter at Ohio State. Gets big hang time on punts, allowing coverage teams to get down the field and make the play. Has a smooth, fluid kicking stroke. Effectively handles the bad snap.

    Negatives: Slow getting the ball off his foot and must hasten his delivery.

    Analysis: Chrisman is a nice-sized punter with a big leg and the ability to place his kicks. He possesses an upside and also has the size necessary to make tackles in the open field. He’s a Day 3 pick who could quickly break-in as a team’s starting punter as a rookie.

    Drue Chrisman Player Profile

    Ohio State punter Drue Chrisman began his journey to the 2021 NFL Draft as a high school punter at Cincinnati Lasalle. In addition to success with the ball at his feet, he also spent time playing quarterback. His experience with the ball in his hand would prove useful in his college career, but more on that later.

    As a high school junior, he punted at an average of 43 yards per punt, earning Second Team Division II All-State honors. During his senior season, he upped his game. Punting at an average of 46.4 yards per punt, he earned First Team All-State honors as Cincinnati Lasalle won consecutive state titles.

    Featured | NFL Draft Prospects 2021: Pauline’s updated big board, player rankings

    In addition to punting success, he put through 38 out of 40 extra point attempts. Furthermore, he kicked the winning field goal with 10 seconds on the clock in a pivotal game against Colerain.

    A three-star recruit and the top punter in the 2016 class, he wasn’t short of college offers coming out of Cincinnati Lasalle. However, following multiple visits in the fall of 2015, he committed to the Ohio State Buckeyes.

    Drue Chrisman’s college football career at Ohio State

    After redshirting in 2016, Drue Chrisman made an impact for the Buckeyes as a redshirt freshman in 2017. A semifinalist for the prestigious Ray Guy Award, he earned Third Team All-Big Ten honors. Averaging a Big Ten leading net 41.1 yards per punt, he nailed 25 punts inside the 20-yard line.

    The following year he’d lead the Big Ten again, averaging a net 41.6 yards per punt. He’d land 29 inside the 20 while 15 of those would fall inside the 10-yard line, giving Ohio State a distinct advantage in the battle for field position.

    Of those 15, five came in one standout second-half performance against Michigan State. Dubbed “the fist-fight in the frost won by a foot” he dropped five punts inside the Michigan State six-yard line. He also won Ray Guy National Punter of the Week for his performance against Penn State.

    Over the next two years, he averaged 44.3 yards and 45 yards per punt, respectively. He demonstrated improvement, but also a level of consistency. He’d boom a season-long 61 yarder against Michigan in 2019, while his junior season also showed his ability to add another dimension for his special teams coordinator.

    In the 2019 Big Ten Championship Game against Wisconsin, he called upon his high school quarterback experience to throw a 21-yard completion on a punt fake. Following the 2020 college football season, Ohio State punter Drue Chrisman declared for the 2021 NFL Draft.

    Drue Chrisman’s best fits in the 2021 NFL Draft

    In many respects, earning the job as an NFL punter is more difficult than becoming a quarterback in the league. Most NFL teams will carry two or three quarterbacks on the roster. Meanwhile, they will only carry one punter. As a result, it’s less about the fit for Ohio State punter Drue Chrisman in the 2021 NFL Draft. It’s more about opportunity.

    The New Orleans Saints recently cut long-standing punter Thomas Morstead so they may be a team with a roster spot to fill. Three teams who finished 2020 at the bottom of the league in terms of net punting average are the Los Angeles Chargers, Minnesota Vikings, and Green Bay Packers. Those teams could look to address the position very late in the draft or even in the undrafted free agent market following the 2021 NFL Draft.

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    Oliver Hodgkinson is a staff writer for Pro Football Network. You can follow him on Twitter at @ojhodgkinson.

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