CORVALLIS, OREGON - NOVEMBER 18: Offensive lineman Taliese Fuaga #75 of the Oregon State Beavers blocks defensive end Bralen Trice #8 of the Washington Huskies at Reser Stadium on November 18, 2023 in Corvallis, Oregon. (Photo by Tom Hauck/Getty Images)
CORVALLIS, OREGON - NOVEMBER 18: Offensive lineman Taliese Fuaga #75 of the Oregon State Beavers blocks defensive end Bralen Trice #8 of the Washington Huskies at Reser Stadium on November 18, 2023 in Corvallis, Oregon. (Photo by Tom Hauck/Getty Images)

Bralen Trice Comp Chiefs’ George Karlaftis

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STANFORD, CALIFORNIA – OCTOBER 28: Bralen Trice #8 of the Washington Huskies gets into a defensive position during a game against the Stanford Cardinal at Stanford Stadium on October 28, 2023 in Stanford, California. (Photo by Brandon Sloter/Image Of Sport/Getty Images)

That picture up above is of Washington Edge rusher, Bralen Trice folding back one of the top offensive tackle prospects in the 2024 NFL Draft, Oregon State’s Taliese Fuaga (6-foot-6, 334 pounds).

He’s folding that dude back like he’s a damn lawn chair.

Brute power ✔️

Strength ✔️

Now that we got that out of the way…

Granted, I’m not quite as high on Trice on his 2023 game film as I was in 2022 (didn’t look quite as fast), but I still recognize the importance of those who can collapse the pocket in today’s pass-happy NFL.

Outside of quarterbacks and receivers, edge rushers are rated as my No. 3 top priority position in the first-round.

Despite Trice’s sack total tailing off from 10 (2022) to 7 (2023), he still showed that same trait of no off-switch. In a piece by Raiders Today Sports Illustrated (via Pro Football Focus), Trice logged 80 pressures in 2023.

That’s insane.

Brings Karlaftis to mind

Back in 2022, Purdue Edge George Karlaftis showed a lot of similarities to Trice (here is my pre-draft evaluation of Karlaftis). They showed similar:

-Size

-Build

-Motor

-Unique fight training (Karlaftis MMA and hand-to-hand Combat and Trice in Karate)

Looking back, I was too low on Karlaftis (No. 30, Chiefs). Karlaftis logged 6.0 sacks (2022) and then 10.5 (2023).

That surprised me, and it taught me a lesson. I’m not doing that this time.

I had dropped Karlaftis into the second-round pre-draft for the same reasons that gave me pause with Trice. Karlaftis showed decent speed and some noticeable stiffness that made me question his ability to make quick pocket adjustments.

Maybe, it’s the fact both are RELENTLESS, which covers up a multitude of short-comings.

The art of leverage

This likely comes from Trice’s background in Karate, and it sure shows up on film. The biggest thing this Huskie’s pass rusher has going for him is his SIXTH SENSE for areas of vulnerability in the opponent.

Wow ⎯he has a nose for the slightest of creases to the inside or outside shoulder of offensive tackles.

He roams from side to side pre-snap testing both tackles. Sometimes he goes outside. Sometimes he slips into a gap inside and presses a crease HARD. At other times he’ll run an “X” stunt crossing paths with the inside defensive tackle at the snap while assaulting that inside gap unexpectedly. He delivered some DEVASTATING HITS on quarterbacks.

It’s like watching a human-sized bowling ball.

Trice also can put the tackle on skates, dig down deep, and put all of his pure lower and upper body weight room strength into the tackle at the point of attack and man up. HE CAN GET SERIOUS MOVEMENT.

Good fits

Based on the league’s valuation of Karlaftis, I see Trice going between picks 25-32 in the 2024 NFL Draft.

According to NFL.com (which I love as a source because they are plugged in directly to the teams), they have Tampa Bay (No. 26) listed as needing an Edge (it’s also unknown if they will be resigning Edge rusher Joe Tryon-Shoyinka who’s contract is up after 2024).

Then there’s the 49ers sitting there at No. 31 ⎯also listed as needing an Edge.

That’s where I say he lands.

#8 Bralen Trice 6-foot-4, 276 pounds

Daniel Kelly’s 2024 NFL Draft Grade: First-Round (I would select him)

Projected by 56.9% of the NFL Draft Community to be a first-round pick as of February 20, 2024 (nflmockdraftdatabase.com)

Washington’s Bralen Trice is a Real Handful (4 games evaluated)

2023 game film reviewed: Oregon, USC, Boise State, Utah, Oregon State, and Arizona (click to view games watched to form this evaluation)

2024 stats: 49 tackles (30 solo), 19 assists and 7 sacks

2024 NFL Draft Scouting Report

Physical and lumbering battering ram who gives consistent effort. Active. Determined. A real handful. Quick get off. Long arms. Creates extension and separation at the point of attack. Strength to rip and go. Flashed spin and swim moves. Quarterback minded. Lacks a short-area burst, but chases. Questionable instincts versus the run. Loves playing bumper cars with the big boys. Struggles to disengage, but doesn’t quit. Often plays contain. Disciplined. Stays true to his assignment to a fault.

Final words

There’s no quit in him.

Daniel Kelly is a former NFL Scout with the New York Jets. He was hired on the regime which featured Bill Parcells, Bill Belichick, Scott Pioli, Mike Tannenbaum, and Dick Haley. He is currently the Editor-in-Chief for First Round Mock, contributes at Yardbarker, and has written for Sports Illustrated Lions, Jets, and 49ers, as well as a featured guest on ESPN Radio and Fox Sports Radio. For more information about him visit his website at whateverittakesbook.com. He can be followed on Twitter @firstroundmock.

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