Oregon defensive lineman Arik Armstead is reportedly leaning strongly toward entering the 2015 NFL Draft as an underclassman, and the feedback he has gathered from NFL personnel executives leaves little doubt as to why.
Armstead's father is screening potential agents for Armstead as the Ducks prepare for a national semifinal Jan. 1 against Florida State, according to Yahoo Sports.
The report attributes an AFC West general manager with this assessment of the 6-foot-8, 290-pounder, who was named All-Pac-12 honorable mention: "Can see him go very, very high. Has everything you want out of a [defensive lineman]. Height, length, power, pass-rush ability. Needs to show more consistency, but raw potential is very intriguing."
Statistically, Armstead hasn't been as productive as some of the other top defensive linemen in college football, but he represents an imposing physical presence in the Ducks' defensive front and has drawn more than his share of double-teams. As for his athleticism, the fact that he even made a run at being a two-sport athlete at Oregon (he gave up basketball early this year) speaks for itself. Armstead has been in the Ducks' defensive line rotation since his freshman year (2012).
Armstead has made 33 tackles this season with 5.5 tackles for loss. The junior has until a Jan. 15 deadline to file notice with the NFL of intent to enter the draft.