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Jer’Zhan Newton

Jer’Zhan Newton (DL) – Illinois / Junior

6’2”, 295 Lbs. (Unofficial)

2023 Stats:  12  Games, 26 Solo, 52 Total Tackles, 8.5 TFL, 7.5 Sack

Reference: {}

Awards: 2023 Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year; 2023 Consensus All-America; 2023 Team Captain

Measurables: (Available post-combine/pro day)

RAS: (Available post-combine/pro day)

Games Watched: 2023 vs Penn State, 2023 vs Nebraska


Newton is a lean defensive tackle and explodes off the snap. He has a constant motor and is a relentless pass rusher. Newton wins with his violent, active hands. He starts with side to side swipes and works his way to a successful swim move. Speed is a factor in every part of Newton’s game. He performs a flurry of moves each play and churns his legs to push by linemen. He’s both agile and powerful. Even as a true interior defender Newton wins around the edge. He even succeeds when moved off the line. He’s bendy for a defensive lineman and can win cross body. Newton graded extremely well, even when faced with plenty of double teams and chip blocks. Against Penn State, Jer’Zhan took over and displayed his full pass rushing expertise. No interior defender in the class has a better arsenal of pass rush moves.


At 6’2” and just under 300 pounds, Jer’Zhan is on the smaller side for defensive tackles. As a run defender, Newton can be moved off the ball. He isn’t a traditional two-gapping defender and will face trouble stopping pure gap runs. His length may not meet team’s expectations and he will lose the reach battle in the trenches. There’s a lack of natural power at his size. He won’t fit every scheme, and teams that are looking for a more traditional power run defender will have to look elsewhere.


Jer’Zhan Newton is a tremendous interior pass rusher. He possesses a complete arsenal of pass rush moves, and uses them both quickly and violently. Newton is an instant pass rushing addition and overcomes his length disadvantage when attacking the quarterback. He struggles more as a run defender, where larger interior lineman can move him, but he has the effort and motor to disrupt outside runs. Newton won’t shine as a run defender, but is too aggressive and relentless to be a liability. His inability to be a true threat on all three downs lowers his stock, but Newton should be able to stay on the field as a 3-tech or 5-tech. Newton is a dynamic defender and every NFL fan should be excited to have him on their team.

Completed by: Mr. Irrelevant (@Mr1rrelevant), 01/08/24

Reviewed and edited: J. Clark, 01/08/24



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