Alameda Ta'amu was a projected first round pick by most heading into his senior season with the Washington Huskies, but nagging injuries and a lack of production hurt his stock a considerable amount. Gifted with size and athleticism, Ta'amu has the all the potential to become an impact defensive tackle at the next level. And while some are thinking he'll slip into the third or even fourth round, Brady Henderson of 710 AM ESPN radio does not think so.
He talked with Todd McShay on the matter:
"It won't surprise me if he is still a second-round pick," McShay said. "It's so hard to find guys that are, what, 341 pounds that can move a little bit and can be very disruptive in the middle. So I think when it's all said and done, even though his stock quote, unquote 'dropped' a little bit, I still think he winds up in the second-round range."
"He didn't play as well this past year as he did in years past," McShay said. "I can't figure out why it is other than the obvious of maybe players don't want to get injured or maybe they're thinking too much about their pro careers or maybe it's the fact that teams are preparing for them, but I've seen a lot of defensive linemen this year -- (Quinton) Coples, Brandon Thompson from Clemson, a defensive tackle -- a lot of these guys did not play as well in 2011 as they did earlier in their careers. And I think with Ta'amu that's the same case."
There are certainly plenty of theories on why Ta'amu might not have lived up to expectations as a senior at UW, but that is in the past and NFL scouts are solely looking at combine performances and workout drills at this point in their evaluations.
Ta'amu might not go as high as the second round, but I would be very surprised to see him go anywhere after midway through the third round. You cannot teach size and he has plenty of it. Some team in the league will be hungry for a run stopper up the middle and there are few better than Ta'amu.
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