NFL Draft

2021 NFL Draft Player Profiles: Kentucky EDGE Jamar Watson

From now until the 2021 NFL Draft takes place, we hope to showcase as many prospects as possible and examine both their strengths and weaknesses. Most of these profiles will feature individuals that the Pittsburgh Steelers are likely to have an interest in, while a few others will be top-ranked players. If there is a player you would like us to analyze, let us know in the comments below.

#31 Jamar Watson/EDGE/Kentucky/6’2”, 241 Lbs

The Good

-Well-built frame to dip and run under larger tackles
-Has experiencing rushing from left or right, standing or hand in the dirt
-Motor runs hot, never gives up on a rep and has great want-to in pursuit
-Experience dropping, turning and running in coverage
-Shows the ability to drop shoulder and run the arc to the QB
-Active, consistent hands off the edge

The Bad

-Lack of length causes issues trying to win against tackles
-Struggles to create separation and lock out for control
-Power overall is a component missing from his game
-Wins more on effort than skill throughout film
-Though capable in space, lacks overall athletic traits to play in space often in the NFL
-If he doesn’t win with initial speed, he can be wiped out


-Played in 49 career games at Kentucky, recording 29 starts
– Recorded 107 tackles, 28.5 TFL, 18.5 sacks, 14 quarterback hurries, five forced fumbles, four PBUs, one interception and one fumble recovery in his career with Wildcats
-18.5 career sacks sits fifth in Kentucky history
-Named All-SEC Second Team in 2020 by Phil Steele
-Voted as one of ten team captains at Kentucky in 2020

Tape Breakdown

A key piece to the Kentucky Wildcats’ success over the last three years, yet seems to be flying under the NFL radar is EDGE rusher Jamar Watson.

Watson, who consistently was in the top 10 of sacks and tackles for loss in the SEC over the last three years, certainly brings the production and experience to the table in this draft class, but there’s much to be desired on tape with Watson from an athletic standpoint.

That said, it’s really hard to overlook what he’s done in his career rushing the passer.


Against Tennessee in 2020, Watson showed the ability to dip and run underneath larger tackles, allowing him to get to the quarterback often.

He’s a speed rusher through and through, and has the ability to maintain his speed while dropping his inside shoulder, making himself a small target for punches from tackles.


Again, look at the way Watson makes himself small and turns the corner for the sack.

His first step is strong to chew up yardage up the field, allowing him to get even with the tackle, which then causes him to drop his shoulders to slip under the block and reach the QB.


Watson has the new-age eurostep as a pass rusher to his game, which he showed here against Vanderbilt in 2020.

He rocks the Vanderbilt tackle to sleep with the eurostep before then dipping and ripping underneath on the outside, working his way into the sack. I like the way he uses his hands early in the rep here when engaged to stay clean and win.


Watson isn’t going to blow anyone away athletically, but I love Watson’s ability to read, react and chase down plays from the backside.

Against North Carolina State in 2020, the Wolf Pack left him unblocked on the backside, which ends up being a massive mistake.


Watson is decent in space and reads plays well in front of him.

During a monster night against South Carolina on Senior Night in 2020, Watson showed his ability to play in space some on this tunnel screen.

Watson recognizes it quickly, working upfield to slip under the block from the climbing lineman, punching the football out in the process. He has good overall movement skills on tape and finds himself around the football often.


This is a clunky rep overall from Watson, but it ends up being a terrific one in the end for he and the Wildcats.

You can see Watson at the top of the screen squeeze the route out to the sideline. He feels the receiver work vertically and flips his hips slowly to turn and run.

Though he’s in chase mode, he never gives up on the play, working himself back into the fold before ripping the ball away for the interception and the turnover.

While the tape looks pretty decent overall for his build and position, there are some concerns with Watson’s testing numbers. During his Pro Day at Kentucky, Watson clocked a 4.78 40, 30-inch vertical, 7.33 3-cone, and 19 reps on the bench.

The 3-cone time is a concern as it is in the 12th percentile and has me concerned with his ability to turn the corner against bigger and better tackles in the NFL.

All that said, I think Watson can stick on a roster as a decent No. 4 OLB in a 3-4 scheme and will play his butt off on special teams.

Projection: Priority UDFA

Games Watched: Ole Miss (2020), Mississippi State (2020), Tennessee (2020), North Carolina State (2020), Vanderbilt (2020), South Carolina (2020)

Previous 2021 NFL Draft Player Profiles
OC Drake Jackson OC Landon Dickerson TE Pat Freiermuth RB Javonte Williams
CB Patrick Surtain II OG Deonte Brown TE Kylen Granson TE Brevin Jordan
OL Trey Smith OT Adrian Ealy CB Jaycee Horn CB Kary Vincent Jr.
RB Elijah Mitchell OT Alex Leatherwood TE Hunter Long RB Najee Harris
CB Tyson Campbell LB Zaven Collins DB Greg Newsome TE Tony Poljan
DL Christian Barmore RB Kenneth Gainwell OT Rashawn Slater WR Kadarius Toney
RB Michael Carter EDGE Joe Tryon CB Thomas Graham Jr. WR Amari Rodgers
RB Demetric Felton C Creed Humphrey C Trey Hill LB Jabril Cox
CB Asante Samuel Jr. S Joshuah Bledsoe OT Samuel Cosmi S Trevon Moehrig
RB Chuba Hubbard S James Wiggins LB Garret Wallow RB Kylin Hill
WR Dazz Newsome RB Khalil Herbert CB Shaun Wade WR Tylan Wallace
RB Rhamondre Stevenson CB Camryn Bynum WR Amon-Ra St. Brown WR Shi Smith
OT Liam Eichenberg EDGE Patrick Jones DT Alim McNeill OT Christian Darrisaw
QB Kyle Trask RB Jermar Jefferson QB Trey Lance OT Jaylen Mayfield
OT Teven Jenkins TE Kenny Yeboah LB Chazz Surratt CB Tre Brown
QB Kellen Mond LB Nick Bolton OL Brady Christensen DL Dayvion Nixon
CB Elijah Molden QB Mac Jones EDGE Rashad Weaver LB Cameron McGrone
RB Trey Sermon LB Pete Werner LB Tony Fields TE Luke Farrell
RB Jaret Patterson LB Dylan Moses TE Kyle Pitts LB Jamin Davis
TE Tommy Tremble QB Jamie Newman TE Shaun Beyer EDGE Azeez Ojulari
QB KJ Costello CB Caleb Farley DB Richie Grant OT Tommy Doyle
OG Jackson Carman WR Ihmir Smith-Marsette LB Baron Browning WR Terrace Marshall
LB/S JaCoby Stevens OC Josh Myers S Hamsah Nasirildeen OT Dillon Radunz
LB Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah WR Anthony Schwartz S Talanoa Hufanga WR Sage Surratt
WR Dyami Brown OT Jaylon Moore WR Elijah Moore WR Seth Williams
NT Forrest Merrill WR Cornell Powell WR Rondale Moore EDGE Jaelan Phillips
S Divine Deablo WR Rashod Bateman EDGE Elerson Smith C Jimmy Morrissey
RB Larry Rountree C/G Quinn Meinerz CB Benjamin St-Juste OT Spencer Brown
EDGE Daelin Hayes WR Tamorrion Terry DL Marvin Wilson OT Walker Little
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OT Alijah Vera-Tucker WR Tutu Atwell TE Pro Wells RB Pooka Williams
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ILB K.J. Britt OG Aaron Banks DL Jay Tufele OG Wyatt Davis
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DL Tommy Togiai EDGE Ronnie Perkins TE Tre McKitty EDGE Victor Dimukeje
CB Robert Rochell OT Stone Forsythe EDGE Janarius Robinson DL Tyler Shelvin
CB Rodarius Williams WR Jaelon Darden WR Nico Collins DL Levi Onwuzurike
EDGE Carlos Basham Jr. TE Quintin Morris LB Monty Rice LB Derrick Barnes
EDGE Raymond Johnson III CB Ifeatu Melifonwu OL Kendrick Green OT D’Ante Smith
WR Jalen Camp RB Javian Hawkins DL Jaylen Twyman TE Matt Bushman
OL David Moore WR Josh Imatorbhebe EDGE Hamilcar Rashed Jr. DB Bryce Thompson
CB Ambry Thomas EDGE Jonathon Cooper WR Marquez Stevenson LB Micah Parsons
EDGE Patrick Johnson S Damar Hamlin DL Osa Odighizuwa TE John Bates
WR Simi Fehoko EDGE Malcolm Koonce WR Trevon Grimes OT Royce Newman
RB Rakeem Boyd EDGE Shaka Toney S Shawn Davis OL Robert Hainsey
WR Dax Milne OL Cole Van Lanen DL Cameron Sample S Richard LeCounte
P Max Duffy WR Warren Jackson S Andre Cisco EDGE Payton Turner
DB Avery Williams TE Briley Moore DB Jevon Holland EDGE Tarron Jackson
CB Israel Mukuamu RB C.J. Marable WR DeVonta Smith S Jamar Johnson
DB Tariq Thompson WR Joshua Palmer WR Jaylen Waddle OC Brandon Kennedy
CB Nick McCloud QB Justin Fields P Pressley Harvin III CB Rachad Wildgoose
P Drue Chrisman QB Trevor Lawrence CB Zech McPhearson OT Alaric Jackson
P James Smith OL Dan Moore Jr. QB Zach Wilson OL Braylon Jones
S Caden Sterns OT Brenden Jaimes WR Ja’Marr Chase RB Chris Evans
RB Travis Etienne EDGE Jayson Oweh CB Eric Stokes EDGE Charles Snowden
OL Jack Anderson CB Paulson Adebo WR Austin Watkins WR Damonte Moxie
EDGE Jordan Smith CB Marco Wilson EDGE Adetokunbo Ogundeji WR Ben Skowronek
CB Tay Gowan EDGE Chris Rumph II WR Dez Fitzpatrick CB Keith Taylor
EDGE Amen Ogbongbemiga OT Josh Ball EDGE Dare Odeyingbo WR Dillon Stoner
WR Mike Strachan OL Michal Menet LB Justin Hilliard OG Ben Cleveland
RB Spencer Brown WR Brandon Smith LB Isaiah McDuffie IOL Drew Dalman
OL Tommy Kraemer TE Zach Davidson WR Frank Darby TE Miller Forristall
CB Deommodore Lenoir LB Rayshard Ashby S Christian Uphoff OT Carson Green
WR Jacob Harris RB/KR Kene Nwangwu WR Rico Bussey CB DJ Daniel
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