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WP Insider Baylor's Phil Taylor- perhaps our NT of the future. UPDATED 3/9 Article with Stephen Paea mention


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Posted at 2:30 PM ET, 01/26/2011

Baylor's Phil Taylor is biggest man on campus

By Rick Maese

It shouldn't surprise anyone if the Redskins find a way to field at least two -- and maybe three -- new starting defensive linemen next season. There are plenty of prospects available in the draft and one of the more intriguing players competing here in Mobile, Ala., at the Senior Bowl is Baylor's Phil Taylor.

Following practice Tuesday, Taylor said he feels he can play as either a nose tackle or a three-technique defensive tackle, but pro scouts and coaches are definitely looking at a guy with his thick frame as a nose.

"I played both this year," said Taylor. "I played mostly the one-technique. But three or the one -- it's not a big deal for me. ...Wherever they want to put me, I'll play it."

To no one's surprise, Taylor weighed in Monday as the heaviest player for Saturday's Senior Bowl. He stands 6-foot-3 1/2 inches tall and weighs 337 pounds.

I've read different things about him, never seen him in the game. We need a nose tackle long-term. I know Anthony Bryant came on strong at the end of the season, but we really can't count on anyone outside of him stepping in, and besides, he's in his late 20's. Kemo is useless. Haynesworth isn't even part of this team next year, and if he is, he's definitely not the nose.

I'm hoping for some young, blue chip talent at the position and maybe Taylor's it. A strong combine could make him high on a lotta team's boards...Would he be worth it with our 2nd rounder? I kind of feel he'd be a reach for the 10th pick, but won't last until our slot in the 2nd round.

Either way, we need a long-term solution at NT if we're gonna make the 3-4 really work. A real force in the middle, stops the run, helps keep our linebackers clean and provides occasional inside push on pass plays.

Update 3-7

From Insider article

"Baylor's Phil Taylor attracts Redskins' interest"

With the failure of the Albert Haynesworth-nose tackle experiment, and Ma'ake Kemoeatu coming off shoulder surgery, the Redskins are in the market for a nose tackle to anchor the line of their 3-4 defense. And Taylor, a Clinton, Md., native, is improving his stock as draft evaluations continue.

In post-Senior Bowl draft projections in January, Taylor was considered a mid- to early second round draft choice. Now draft analysts believe that he could be taken late in the first round.

At the combine, the 6-foot-3, 334-pound Taylor ran the 40-yard dash in 5.09 seconds, bench pressed 225 pounds 31 times, and recorded a vertical leap of 29-1/2 inches and a broad jump of 8 feet, 4 inches.

Also at the combine, Taylor had a group interview with Redskins officials including coach Mike Shanahan, defensive coordinator Jim Haslett, owner Daniel Snyder and general manager Bruce Allen, according Schaffer.

Update 3/9 Article

Blurb on Stephen Paea contrasting him with Taylor from WP article:

Second-round defensive options are a pair of nose tackles in Baylor’s Phil Taylor, or Oregon State’s Stephen Paea, whom Kiper actually has rated higher than Taylor. At 6-foot-1, 311 pounds, Paea is a little smaller than the 6-4, 340-pound Taylor, but Kiper believes Paea is more of a playmaker and gets better penetration. Taylor moreso takes up space, Kiper says, and he also points to questions about his stamina as negatives.
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i would like this pick.. but it will take him a few years to develop imo. Kelly Greg may be let go by the Ravens for them to get under the cap i would maybe look into him for rotational purposes by the time hes out it will be Phil Taylor's time to step in. Also look for Chris Neild in the late rounds or maybe a undrafted FA..

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Taylor has had weight problems but he did himself a favor, showing up for the Senor Bowl lighter than he's been.

http://www.hogshaven.com/2011/1/25/1955034/redskins-senior-bowl-draft-prospect-phil-taylor-nt-baylor

Redskins Senior Bowl Draft Prospect: Phil Taylor, NT, Baylor

Projected round: 2nd

The Redskins 3-4 defense started to take some shape the last 4 games of the season, which was evident with the rushing defense jumping six spots to finish 26th in Yards Against per carry (4.6). Anthony Bryant was certainly a help there. So that leads to the question - Who will be the Redskins Nose Tackle next season if the Redskins don't draft one? There are several free agents out there, but in terms of our current roster, Anthony Bryant still has question marks if he can make it through an entire season (since this was his first NFL action after a 4-year hiatus). Vonnie Holliday played admirably this season, but he will be 36 this December. Phillip Daniels saw some action at NT and is a work horse, but he will be 38 in March.

The NT arguably is the most important position in the 3-4. If a NT can't get at least double teams blocks, like Ma'ake Kemoeatu could not, then the LBs have a much more difficult time getting through their gaps cleanly. A NT that can push the line back also does wonders for dropping a QB's completion percentage. So, how about Phil Taylor?

Brian Galliford, who's covers the mock drafts for SB Nation, had this to say on Taylor's first day at the Senior Bowl:

"Taylor reportedly carried his 337 pounds very well at the weigh-in, looking to be in great shape, and then went out and had a good practice. Scouts noted his ability to clog up running lanes, as the South offense really struggled to run the football on the day, and he also displayed some ability as a pass rusher, with sophisticated moves for a big guy."

Taylor is the heaviest player at the Senior Bowl. The guy can hold a gap and showed this season that he has no problem fending off blockers. He also plays with a mean streak. I can't wait for this game on Saturday.

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Yes Skins need additional help at NT but we can't count on getting THE guy during the draft. The Gibbs/Cerrato approach was to focus on a particular must-have player and then trade picks to ensure that they got the guy. The long-term results of that strategy have been poor. It's possible that Phil Taylor will be there when the Skins pick in round 2. Then again, there are more and more teams switching to the 3-4 so the best potential NT prospects may go earlier than we hope.

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his draft grade is supposed to be like the 4th or 5th round but I guess his stock has gone up with a great senior bowl practice. Another interesting prospect for the late rounds would Sione Fua from standford he could also be a option for our NT.

Well he came into the Senior Bowl in great shape and looked like he really cared about being a football player. That was huge for a guy who had weight problems in the past but now has made a dedicated effort to be a better player and one who is in shape. Add in a coach like Shanahan who would make sure he was in tip top shape and it makes a lot of sense for us

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If we're sitting there in round 2 with a chance at him I think we take him no question. He's the best NT in the draft and will be a great value at 41 and can do many things for our team for a long time

I agree with this. If he's there in the 2nd when we pick, I think we take him.

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I agree with this. If he's there in the 2nd when we pick, I think we take him.

Agreed there's a lot of different combinations you can use with him. Line him up at DE at times and have Bryant at NT and then move him to NT on pass rushing downs. It will allow for a lot of flexibility for Haslett to make lineup calls and changes

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Well living in Waco, TX, I have been able to watch alot of Baylor football.

He was a shining start on a relatively weak defense.

The player to watch for,tho it wont be till next year is Robert Griffin III, qb.

He has track speed, a big arm, and has really muscled up since his knee surgery.

This kid will really be exciting.

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Yes Skins need additional help at NT but we can't count on getting THE guy during the draft. The Gibbs/Cerrato approach was to focus on a particular must-have player and then trade picks to ensure that they got the guy. The long-term results of that strategy have been poor. It's possible that Phil Taylor will be there when the Skins pick in round 2. Then again, there are more and more teams switching to the 3-4 so the best potential NT prospects may go earlier than we hope.

More like the Gibbs way. Vinny was more about drafting the best player available. On the downside, he wasn't very adept at moving around to get the players we needed. Some combination of the two is needed to get the most out of your draft picks.

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Hey guys, Baylor grad here. Been watching Phil Taylor for the past couple years since he transferred from Penn State. The dude is a beast and gets great penetration on the D-Line. He's so dominant he's even been used on offense a few times. Due to the fact that he's coming out of Baylor, which is not known for great defensive prospects outside of Mike Singletary, he'll be a 2nd or 3rd round pick no matter how good he does at the combine or scouts grade him. He has TREMENDOUS value for where we might be able to grab him. I hope Shanny pays attention to this guy.

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Hey guys, Baylor grad here. Been watching Phil Taylor for the past couple years since he transferred from Penn State. The dude is a beast and gets great penetration on the D-Line. He's so dominant he's even been used on offense a few times. Due to the fact that he's coming out of Baylor, which is not known for great defensive prospects outside of Mike Singletary, he'll be a 2nd or 3rd round pick no matter how good he does at the combine or scouts grade him. He has TREMENDOUS value for where we might be able to grab him. I hope Shanny pays attention to this guy.

Thanks for the take. From what you say he sounds like a high motor guy - did he seem like a player that needed to be rotated out a lot?

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Agreed there's a lot of different combinations you can use with him. Line him up at DE at times and have Bryant at NT and then move him to NT on pass rushing downs. It will allow for a lot of flexibility for Haslett to make lineup calls and changes

Man, having him and Bryant lined up next to each other with Carriker on the other side...the opposing team had better audible to a pass lol.

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I have a feeling Dallas will take him in the 2nd. I have heard rumors of Dallas moving Ratliff to DT and going with a larger NT. Boy would that suck if Dallas takes him 1 pick before us.

Let's hope they use first two rounds of the draft to fix their horrible secondary and old offensive line...

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