Harold Landry established himself as one of college football's top pass rushers last season, and he could exit 2017 as the consensus best player at his position, if not the entire class.
He recorded 16.5 sacks in 2016, a Boston College single-season record, and surprised some evaluators by returning to school for his senior season instead of entering the 2017 draft. He still flies a bit under the radar nationally, but how's this for high praise? BC defensive coordinator Jim Reid has likened Landry to Pro Football Hall of Famer Jason Taylor, whom Reid coached with the Miami Dolphins.
Pulling back the curtain on the vote
Landry received votes from all seven CFB 24/7 experts, including two top-4 votes. He's one of nine players who received a vote from every analyst. There are just two defensive players ranked higher than him in the #CFBTop25 countdown.
What some of our analysts are saying about Landry
"Landry is a gifted edge rusher. He is very bendy at the top of his rush and he has a knack for forcing fumbles once he arrives at the quarterback." -- Daniel Jeremiah
"The ultra-athletic pass rusher possesses the cat-like quickness, closing burst and hand skills to be a disruptive playmaker as a pro. With 21 career sacks, including 16.5 in 2016, Landry might be the next great pass rusher to take the league by storm." -- Bucky Brooks
"Ask around the ACC, and offensive coaches will tell you that if you don't block this young man, he can reduce your schemes to rubble. His 16.5 sacks in 2016 back those claims up." -- Charles Davis
"I was surprised he didn't enter the draft after last season. He lacks the long limbs that LSU's Arden Key has, but he's a better pure edge rusher. His name will get red hot this season." -- Lance Zierlein
"It was a bit surprising that Landry didn't leave school after 2016 because he would have likely been one of the top pass rushers in this year's draft. He's a long, strong edge rusher who will push around college tackles for another year." -- Chad Reuter
"Landry's decision to come back for one more season gives scouts another long look at one of the game's dynamic pass rushers." -- Chase Goodbread
Where do fans rank Landry?
We asked Twitter users who they considered the best player in college football. Landry didn't receive a vote. At this point in the countdown, it's a bit surprising when a player ranked so high goes without fan support. If he follows up his breakthrough season by taking another step forward in his development, a lot more fans will know his name.