Hauoli Kikaha   DE/OLB   Washington

TALENT BOARD ROUND 2

STRENGTHS
Hauoli is what I call a power rushing defensive end for a 4-3 defense. When he plays from a three point stance, he changes the line of scrimmage on almost every play to his advantage. He has a powerful upper and lower body to play bigger than his size and is stout against the run -- even being used at times as a nose tackle on third downs. Hauoli has been used as a stand-up attacking defensive player because of his strength and burst. He can be effective in that style of defense also, but he is not the type of player who will become an effective specialty player because the more repetitions he has in a game the more impacting he is. He shows on the film an ability to read blocks while he is engaged and shows the excellent ability to play in either one-gap or two-gap defenses. Hauoli reads blocks from a three point stance very well, but struggles thinking too much when he is standing up, making him hesitate and losing his best attribute in leverage and strength. Nevertheless, Hauoli was very productive and impacting playing in both a three point stance and as a stand up attacking the line of scrimmage DE/OLB for his college team.

CONCERNS
There are rumors of medical concerns, but Iím not privy to that information so I will not downgrade him for those reasons. Hauoli does struggle being used in any kind of pass coverage beyond the line of scrimmage and if teams feel they want to use him as a stand up OLB in a 3-4 defense, they are making a big mistake except for screens to his side. Also as a stand up 3-4 OLB, Hauoli loses leverage and struggles to get off blocks to make tackles against the run. As a stand-up lineman, he needs to lower his pad level and attack and recognize running plays quicker than he does right now. He also struggles to get off blocks from a three point stance, but that is mostly a technique issue and not a lack of leverage issue.

BOTTOM LINE
Hauoli has the potential to be as good as Terrell Suggs. That being said, he doesnít have the football intelligence and instincts right now and will take some time to develop them. When he plays in a three point stance and comes off the line, Hauoli has this knack of understanding (while engaged) exactly where a play is going and adjusts; he makes his move with lighting quickness. It is very unusual for a player coming out of college to already understand offensive lineman blocking assignments when engaged. Vince Wolfork has this ability, but it took him a few years to learn it before he became the impact run stuffer that he is. Hauoli seems to recognize why he is being blocked and as soon as he learns to get off his blocks faster and quicker and make a secure tackle, he could become a player who can impact as a pass rusher and as a run stuffing defense player in any style of defense. But he is not a pass coverage type of guy and never will be a pass coverage type of guy, so deal with it if you draft him.

Drew Boylhart
APR/2015