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Dontari Poe has emerged as a polarizing draft figure


Just who is Dontari Poe?

At the NFL Scouting Combine, Poe looked like a future NFL superstar, a defensive tackle with the strength of an ox and the speed of tight end.

But then there were those numbers in college at Memphis. One sack in 12 games? Just eight tackles for a loss?'s Peter King reported comments like "I see no production" and "The guy just disappears in games" have been commonplace.

That said, numbers don't always tell the tale when discussing interior linemen. One AFC personnel man told King that Poe could be the next Haloti Ngata, the Baltimore Ravens' studly three-time Pro Bowler.

"He could be one of the most versatile tackles in our league," the personnel man said of Poe. "Ngata didn't come into the league without questions either."

Ngata had three sacks and nine stops for losses in his final season at Oregon. Again, not necessarily impressive numbers, but Ngata was named first-team All-American and was Oregon's first defensive lineman in 18 years to earn team MVP honors. No one was questioning the guy's positive effect on a defense.

Teams that like Poe likely view his numbers in the same prism. One team that could be tempted to move on Poe? The New York Jets, who King noted had a head coach who saw up close how Ngata transformed Baltimore's front line.

Of course, the last time the Jets drafted a combine hero, they ended up with Vernon Gholston. Fool me once ...


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