Photo of Samson Ebukam
Drafted By: Rams
Grade
5.24 ?

Draft Analysis:

Ebukam is a project with impressive athletic traits. Wade Phillips likes to rotate his pass rushers so he could find his way onto the field sooner rather than later. The Rams may not see a significant impact right away, but there is some strong upside here. --Mark Dulgerian

  • 6'3" Height
  • 240LBS. Weight

Overview

Nnamaka Samson Ebukam was born in Nigeria, but learned football early on in Portland, Oregon and excelled as a high school defensive end and tight end. Ebukam contributed as a true freshman, playing 15 games as a reserve (28 tackles, four for loss, three sacks). He was a second-team All-Big Sky selection as a hybrid linebacker/defensive end in 2014 (12 TFL, 7.5 sacks) and 2015 (7.5 TFL, four sacks). Samson was a team co-captain in his senior year, garnering third-team FCS All-American honors from the Associated Press with 15 tackles for loss and a team-leading 9.5 sacks.

Analysis

Strengths

Explosive athlete with a background in basketball, javelin and shot-put in high school. Triggers out of his stance with quick-twitch as a rusher. Attacks the edge with plus burst and has the desire to keep working when he gets punched and controlled early. Wowed teams with a vertical leap of 39 inches and a sub 4.5 forty yard dash at his pro day. Plays with a suddenness when crashing down the line after ball carriers. Drawn to the play like a magnet. Lauded for intelligence and work ethic. Initial quickness creates disruption in run game. Chalked up 15 tackles for loss and two forced fumbles in 2016. Rangy with a willingness to pursue way down the field.

Weaknesses

Tends to play too frenetically at times. Will need to eliminate some of the wasted motion with his flailing arms and legs. Gets overly focused on blocker in front of him and will lose sight of ball carrier. Wins with raw athleticism over technique. Better hand usage must become a priority. Gets glued to blocks for too long and can be slow to disengage. One-speed pass rusher who doesn't generate as much speed to power as hoped. Lacks the size to play through redirect blocks. Needs to develop a more nuanced rush plan with workable counter moves for next level.

Draft Projection

Round 5

NFL Comparison

Bryan Braman

Bottom Line

Ebukam is a driven prospect with above average intelligence who is still in the process of matching his skill to his athletic ability. He lacks desired size and power to play with his hand in the ground and will have to move to an outside linebacker spot. Ebukam has a chance to get drafted on the third day and his speed, explosiveness, and motor could make him a special teams standout while a team works to develop him as a pass rusher.
-Lance Zierlein
C
Grade Title
9.00-10 Once-in-lifetime player
8.00-9.00 Perennial All-Pro
7.50-7.99 Future All-Pro
7.00-7.49 Pro Bowl to All-Pro Ability
6.50-6.99 Good NFL Starter with Pro Bowl Potential
6.00-6.49 Chance to become good NFL starter
5.70-5.99 Could become early NFL starter
5.30-5.69 Backup or eventual starter
5.15-5.29 Developmental prospect or special teams potential
5.01-5.14 Back end of the roster
5.00 50/50 Chance of making the roster

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