On the surface level, the debate surrounding schematic defensive fronts starts at 4-3 vs. 3-4. But it doesn’t take much digging to realize that it’s deeper than that. No team is in the same front every snap. And the more versatility you have on your roster, the better you can prepare for different situations. Houston DE Logan Hall is one such NFL Draft prospect who provides that versatility with his scouting report.
Logan Hall NFL Draft Profile
- Position: Defensive End
- School: Houston
- Current Year: Senior
- Height: 6’6 1/8″
- Weight: 283 pounds
- Wingspan: 79 1/8″
- Arm: 32 3/4″
- Hand: 9 5/8″
Logan Hall Scouting Report
4-3 and 3-4 are the most common base alignments, but there’s much more nuance to defensive line play and how players are leveraged in certain situations. There are over a dozen different techniques to play from end to end, and every player has a different range of uses along the defensive front.
Some players are restricted to specific roles. Some are only productive at 3-technique. Others aren’t large enough to stunt inside and thus exist in the realm of 5-technique and beyond. But players who can fulfill multiple roles have heightened value on the NFL Draft circuit and in the eyes of defensive minds. Hall is that kind of player. Here’s what makes his report particularly exciting.
Hall’s athletic profile
Right away, Hall fits the mold of a disruptive hybrid defensive lineman. He stands at a long 6’6″. In the past, he’s been as light as 241 pounds, but he’s now listed at 283 after the Combine. And looking at his frame, he looks like the type of athlete that could get up to 290 with an NFL training regimen. He carries his weight extremely well, and his long frame gives him immense disruption potential.
Hall possesses great initial explosiveness and burst, and he generates displacement quickly. He’s quick and energetic off the snap, which helps him build momentum and carry it forward into blocks. The Houston DE also has the lateral athleticism to slip by linemen and penetrate gaps in the running game. Furthermore, with his lateral athleticism, Hall stunts and covers ground swarming the pocket, and he can also execute spins after exerting his power and wrenching blockers off-balance.
Speaking of power, Hall has tons of it. With his explosiveness and length, his speed-to-power conversion can be devastating for linemen. He can outmuscle weaker opponents with his sheer power and length in both phases, but his bull rush and long arm moves are dangerous. He has excellent leg drive when anchored and can bury defenders with his burst and power output.
With his size and power, Hall is a twitched-up athlete who brings ferocious, amped-up energy on the attack. He’s explosive, disruptive, laterally spry, and has enough hip flexibility to turn the corner on guards and pursue the QB.
Execution beyond the physical traits
When you’re around 6’6″, 283 pounds, and have the athleticism that Hall does, it’s easy to get excited. Even more exciting, however, is the working arsenal of pass-rushing moves that he has in his toolbox, as well as his surprising utility against the run.
As mentioned earlier, Hall has shown the ability to use bull rushes, long arms, arm-over moves, swims, and rips in various settings. He has a wicked arm-over technique, and he can also rip away linemen’s anchors and swim inside with voracious quickness. With his hyper-active hands, Hall extends with violence and has an attacking mindset as a rusher.
Hall uses his length to get inside opponents’ torsos and drive them back with power. He channels his violent energy with precise and efficient hands, and he’s shown he can bat away opposing extensions and latch and push in rapid succession. Additionally, the Houston DE seeks to disrupt the passing lane by using his length and leaping ability. He’s relentless in pursuit of the QB, and he can cover ground in pursuit with his long frame, often chasing to the sideline.
Even in the running game, Hall can be a lot to handle. The Cougars pass rusher surges into congestion, and he’s shown he can lower his pads and maintain his center of gravity when anchored. He’s not as consistent in this phase, but he has the tools to be competent.
Areas for improvement
As good as Hall is, there are some inconsistencies. The Houston DE sometimes plays a bit too upright, which stalls his momentum and leg drive. He’s not the most flexible athlete, and when he’s too upright, he doesn’t get maximum burst on his first step. In a similar vein, his hands can be placed a bit high at times. Hall could also afford to do a better job consistently getting under opponents’ pads and shooting his hands.
Going further, Hall still has room to develop from a technical standpoint, even though his floor is relatively high. He can do better to stack moves on top of his bull rush and add more counters to his game. He can be overreliant on bull rushes and arm-overs. And when his first move doesn’t work, his rushes can sometimes stall out. Additionally, Hall has a slight false step at the start of some reps, which further delays his explosion.
Although his pass rushing needs improvement, run defense is where Hall is most inconsistent. The Houston DE has bulked up since 2020, but he’s still slightly lighter than average on the interior. He can’t always fully absorb power. Subsequently, he can be easy to move off his platform. Hall is not a space-eater, and without elite strength and mass, he can be negated easily by double-teams — especially when he has poor leverage.
Moreover, Hall’s desire to shoot gaps in run defense can cause him to give up too much surface area, allowing blockers to attain superior leverage and nullify his efforts. He also sometimes struggles to disengage and combat opposing anchors.
Hall’s 2022 NFL Draft scouting report overview
There’s always a projective element for NFL Draft prospects, but that element is especially present when evaluating Hall. The Houston DE has the build of a large edge rusher but more often plays inside closer to a 3-technique (aligned with the guard’s outside shoulder). However, he moves around at times, so the question is, where does he play at the next level?
That question may not need a specific, one-way answer. Hall can be a mismatch on the interior with his burst, violence, and lateral athleticism. But he can also line up at 5-technique, build up speed around the edge, and drive tackles back with his power. Hall has the physical traits to be a matchup nightmare all across the line. On top of that, he routinely converts his physical superiority with violent hand usage.
There’s still work for Hall to do before he reaches his ultimate potential. The Houston DE could stand to add another 5-10 pounds at the NFL level. And he can still work on stacking pass-rush moves with more consistency. But as it stands, Hall is a borderline top-50 talent in the 2022 NFL Draft.
Put him at 3-technique in a Tite front, or move him around and let him feast on weekly mismatches. Either way, Hall has the potential to be a valuable pass-rushing catalyst at the next level.
Hall’s Player Profile
In the hands of the opportunistic, opportunity breeds excellence. An opportunity is all Hall was asking for as a recruit in the 2018 class. But despite logging 10 tackles for loss as a senior in high school, the 6’5″, 218-pound Belton, Texas product found opportunities hard to come by.
Unranked on ESPN’s board, most of Hall’s interest came from the Group of Five conferences. The lanky defender had offers from Colorado State, Toledo, Bowling Green, and Sam Houston State. But when Houston approached Hall with interest, Hall decided to stay in-state and take the three-hour trip to H-Town. There, he’d seek to prove himself on the college stage.
Hall’s career at Houston
There was work to do when Hall arrived at Houston. Building up mass was the first item on the agenda, and Hall left no time to waste. By final weigh-ins his freshman year, he stood at 6’6″, 241 pounds — 23 pounds heavier than his high school weight.
It still wasn’t good enough to break the starting lineup, but it was enough for Hall to earn rotational reps in his first year. He took advantage of those reps, logging 14 tackles, 3 tackles for loss, and a forced fumble. Hall kept that weight in 2019 and had similar statistics, earning 13 tackles and 1.5 tackles for loss.
In 2020, Hall took the next step. Rather than sticking at 241 pounds, the Houston DE boosted himself up to 260, becoming the understudy of first-round pick Payton Turner. With his added mass, Hall fielded added snaps on the interior. He started three games and filed away his first career sack in the process.
After Turner left, Hall became the Cougars’ premier playmaker on the defensive line. It was a role he had to earn, but by the end of 2021, you could hardly tell the difference between him and Turner. Hall brutalized the AAC in his senior campaign, accumulating 47 tackles, 13 tackles for loss, and 6 sacks. For his performance, he received first-team All-AAC recognition — superseding Turner from the year before.
Hall’s NFL Draft ascension
It’s easy to see parallels to Turner watching Hall. Both players donned the Houston red and flourished with the Cougars. And both prospects had a lot of projected versatility in the NFL. Hall might not be quite as flexible as Turner, and he didn’t test quite as well. Yet, he still has great athleticism to go along with a frame that can move all across the defensive front. And his unyielding violence in hand-fighting situations is unique to him alone.
Hall is an easy Day 2 pick, and depending on how certain teams view his scheme fit, he could rise even higher in late April, similarly to his teammate. His performance at the Senior Bowl, combined with his athletic testing, has him on the rise. But on the football field itself, Hall no doubt has the physical ability, versatility, and relentless style to shine. That’s why he’s a projected early-round selection in the 2022 NFL Draft.
Tony Pauline’s scouting report for Logan Hall
Positives: Athletic defensive line prospect with size as well as growth potential. Fires off the snap with a terrific first step, plays with outstanding pad level, and nicely redirects to ball handlers. Immediately alters his angle of attack to make plays against the run, works his hands throughout the action, and stays with assignments. Very explosive, keeps his feet moving, and draws the focus of opponents.
Negatives: Possesses a thin build and must get the first step on opponents. Does not get down the line to make plays outside the box despite his athletic numbers.
Analysis: Hall is a prospect who is just hitting his stride and is coming off a tremendous senior campaign. He’s athletic, offers tremendous upside potential, and has a lot of scheme versatility. Hall is the type of draft pick who may take time to develop, but he’ll only improve as he physically matures, adds bulk and strength, and gets more playing experience.
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