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NFL Draft 2019 scouting report: ‘Mad’ Maxx Crosby has massive potential at defensive end

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NCAA Football: Eastern Michigan at San Diego State Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

Maxx Crosby, ED, Eastern Michigan

Measurables

6’5”, 255 pounds

4.66 40-yqrd dash

36-inch vertical leap

122-inch broad jump

6.89 second 3-cone

4.13 second shuttle

Stats

2016: 35 tackles, 5.5 TFL, 1.5 sacks

2017: 57 tackles, 16.5 TFL, 11.5 sacks, 4 forced fumbles (1 returned for TD)

2018: 70 tackles, 19 TFL, 7.5 sacks, 4 forced fumbles, 1 INT returned for TD

Awards

2017, 2018 All-MAC Selection

Strengths

Crosby feasted on MAC offensive tackles, and had a penchant for getting into the backfield and creating havoc. He exhibited consistent production in sacks and tackels for loss, amassing 20 sacks and an eye-popping 41 TFL in his three years at Eastern Michigan. After he declared for the draft he was invited to the Combine, where he absolutely crushed all his drills and made his name known to those who may not have heard of him. He was top-five in nearly every drill at his position and tested better than many more highly touted prospects.

Offensive linemen had their hands full with Crosby’s big frame and his ability to shed blocks with ease. Blockers rarely get their hands on Crosby, it’s like trying to block smoke. He’s slippery for a guy his size and never gives up on a play, constantly looking for a way to make an impact or force a fumble. He uses his superior length to create turnovers and get his hands on the ball or ball carrier often. His reflexes are terrific and he is a lot more twitchy than you might expect given his lanky frame. Crosby is adept as a pass rusher but is equally skilled in run defense, and his ability to set a physical edge is above average.

Weaknesses

That long and spindly frame is Crosby’s best asset and also biggest potential weakness, because he doesn’t exhibit any muscle definition and lacks the strength that most edge rushers have so they can deal with the hulking tackles in the NFL. This isn’t the MAC and Crosby absolutely has to get bigger and stronger. He could stand to pack about 20 more pounds of pure muscle onto his frame.

He’s all limbs right now and needs to get stronger and bigger in his core. When he does that, he will also have to learn how to use his hands more effectively when rushing because he won’t be able to just blow by NFL tackles like he is accustomed to doing. He also can’t let potential tackles get away, as his lack of upper-body strength led to some ball-carriers escaping his grasp in college. That won’t fly in the pros. A season with Deuce Gruden should turn Crosby into an absolute monster because he has all the athleticism you could possibly want in a base 4-3 defensive end.

Verdict

Prior to the Combine, Crosby was seen as a sixth or seventh rounder. After his fantastic showing in Indianapolis, he moved up into Day 2 consideration. For Mike Mayock to land him in the fourth is a steal and he might be the best value pick in the draft for the Raiders. He has bigger potential than a lot of the players taken before him and can be the true bull in a china-shop defensive end the Raiders lacked last year.

Fit With Raiders

The Raiders needed to add edge rushing in this draft and they did just that, first with Clelin Ferrell and then with Crosby. If Crosby develops into his full potential, he and Ferrell will be fantastic bookend defensive ends and with Maurice Hurst in the middle, opposing quarterbacks will feel the heat from every direction at all times. Crosby may not start right away but when he does, he will bring an opportunistic playmaking style to the Raider defense that it has sorely lacked recently.

Watch Maxx Crosby’s highlights here