Madison was a Mizzou fan early on growing up in the Show Me State, and won all-state honors on both the offensive line and defensive line in high school (though he missed about half his senior year with an injured foot). His brother, Ryan, was a three-year starter at left guard for the Tigers, so it was natural for the coaching staff to project Brad as an adept blocker, as well. But his natural athleticism and agility gave them pause during the spring of 2009, and moving him to defensive line after his redshirt season seems to have been the correct move both for his ability to change games in college and in the NFL.
He played in 12 games in 2009, making just one tackle, but exploded onto the scene as a sophomore playing across from 2011 San Francisco 49ers top 10 pick Aldon Smith. Madison only started two of the 13 games he played in 2010, but still managed 11 tackles for loss, 7.5 sacks, and two forced fumbles as Smith's foil. Unfortunately, a shoulder injury suffered in camp before the 2011 season hampered Madison's play that season; he started 12 of 13 games but only managed 25 tackles, 8.5 for loss, and 4.5 sacks and was knocked out of the team's Independence Bowl win over North Carolina when his shoulder gave out.
Challenges tackles both inside and outside with strength and a fair get-off for his size. Flashes a spin move off initial contact, maintains balance to chase down the quarterback. Brings a strong punch off the snap when playing the run, holds his ground using his thick overall build. Displays some bend to shorten the corner around the tackle. Excellent back side and downfield hustle. Gets his arms up to block passes if he doesn't reach the quarterback. Tough player who stuck it out in 2011 instead of redshirting.
Not elite in any particular area of his game, will have a tougher time beating NFL tackles off the snap and containing plays on the edge. Does not get off blocks consistently enough. Lacks short-area agility to grab mobile quarterbacks or running backs running by him as he heads upfield. Occasionally rushes from a stand-up position but lacks the agility to move with NFL receivers in space. Lacks flexibility to adjust to cut blocks, doesn't use his hands to beat them.
The younger brother of three-year Tigers starting offensive lineman Ryan Madison was expected to be a tenacious blocker, but a switch to the defensive line after his redshirt year turned out to be the right move. He excelled playing with Aldon Smith in 2010 (11 tackles for loss, 7.5 sacks), but took a step back in 2011 (8.5 TFL, 4.5 sack) because of a lingering shoulder injury. Expect a healthy Madison to harass quarterbacks and set the edge on the strong side again in 2012.
Future Hall of Famer
A once-in-a-generation type prospect who could change how his position is played
An impact player with the ability/intangibles to become a Pro Bowl player. Expect to start immediately except in a unique situation (i.e. behind a veteran starter).
A quality player who will contribute to the team early on and is expected to develop into a starter. A reliable player who brings value to the position.
A prospect with the ability to make team as a backup/role player. Needs to be a special teams contributor at applicable positions. Players in the high range of this category might have long-term potential.
A player with solid measurables, intangibles, college achievements, or a developing skill that warrants an opportunity in an NFL camp. In the right situation, he could earn a place on a 53-man roster, but most likely will be a practice squad player or a camp body.