Leading up to the 2019 NFL Draft, we here at Pro Football Network will be releasing player profiles. Today, we look at University of Michigan defensive end Chase Winovich. These profiles will highlight the strengths of each player, while also talking about some weaknesses. Here at PFN, we believe in focusing more on what the player does well instead of what he doesn’t do well. Thus, in all of our profiles, you’ll read more of what a player can do instead of can’t do.
The 2019 NFL Draft is full of quality defensive linemen. However, of the most intriguing prospects is Michigan defensive end Chase Winovich.
Winovich has some of the most violent hands in this draft, allowing him to jolt would be blockers. Speed is not a major part of his game, but he does explode out of his stance and has the power to stack up at the line of scrimmage. He understands how to get under his blockers and drive them back. He does a fantastic job of identifying the ball carrier and disengaging the block to make the tackle.
When he does get his hands on the ball carrier, more times than not they do go down. He understands how to attack pulling guards and reduce his chances of being trapped. As an edge defender, Winovich has a fantastic understanding of gap discipline. The crafty edge rusher uses his 6’3” frame to his advantage, by getting under blockers. Crossing the face of tackles is not a problem from him, as he utilizes a strong inside rip. He may be limited athletically, but he sets the edge very well. Against read option, he is patient and holds his edge.
The Michigan Wolverine is not known as the most athletic player and can be bested by athletes in the open field. He will need to add more moves to his pass rush repertoire as he is limited to a rip and a bull rush. He can be caught running himself out of a play due to his aggressive nature, but he can be taught how to harness that aggressiveness. When the play gets away from him, he can become disinterested at times. He is an average athlete at best, but that can be overcome with refined technique.
Winovich is a quality defensive playmaker that can make an immediate impact as a rookie. He is versatile enough to play in both a 3-4 style of defense or a 4-3 style of defense. His true position will be as an edge defender in either system. His best trait right now is his ability to be a three-down playmaker. Winovich should be a force against the run and getting after the quarterback.