Arizona State defensive tackle Will Sutton is one of the more polarizing players in the NFL Draft pool.
On one hand, he is the reining two-time Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year, a player who regularly commanded double teams, forcing opposing offenses to game plan for him.
On the other hand, he’s someone whose numbers took a significant dip from 2012 to 2013, causing some to wonder if he gained too much weight in the offseason.
Apparently that is still the case, as a trio of ESPN draft analysts concluded that Sutton’s stock took a hit over a week of Senior Bowl practices along with the game itself.
In an ESPN Insider piece recapping who helped themselves and who hurt themselves, Sutton’s name came up on the wrong side of things.
Sutton had four tackles in Saturday’s game, including a tackle for loss, but the bottom line with him is that at 6-0 and 315 pounds he is carrying too much weight on his frame and doesn’t appear nearly explosive as he did when he played at a lighter weight in 2012. He still plays with an edge and flashes heavy hands, but offensive linemen reached and engulfed him when he failed to win initially. If he can shed some weight and post a strong 10-yard split at the combine, it will help his cause. He’ll also need to interview well and ease concerns about his conditioning.
Sutton tallied 13 sacks in 2012 but had just four in 2013, causing many to wonder if he’d be an impact player at the next level.
Of course, the opinions of scouts and analysts are always a mixed bag, so just because some think Sutton is too heavy does not mean everyone feels the same way.
But with a few months left between now and the draft, it appears Sutton may still have some work to do with regards to his stock.