These rankings are assembled by combining my own subjective personal grade of each players on field talent, as seen on tape and in Combine 1-on-1, with a percentage grade of how high or below average their testing scores were based on position. The players are then ranked from highest to lowest. Defensive tackles and defensive ends were put through different algorithms and then combined for this Top 15 list.
Top 15 DLs in 2017 CFL Draft Class
1. Eli Ankou, UCLA:
The real deal. Plugs gaps with size and in the CFL will be able to rush the passer. Size, resume and college stats almost identical to Ted Laurent when he was coming out of college. A good pro day may have sparked some NFL interest but if he comes north he is an instant day one starter in my opinion.
2. Faith Ekakitie, Iowa:
Highly touted in Iowa but developed very slowly, never became an undisputed starter. Fights off double teams very well. Great reactionary hands to bat down balls. Showed exceptionally well at his pro day. Given pro coaching, and an opportunity, he may shine in a few years.
3. Junior Luke, Montreal:
Demands his presence be felt in the middle of the defence and plays big in big moments. A bit of a one-trick pony in pass rush, bull rush is his bread and butter. Impressed at a US Small School All-Star game where he was defensive MVP. Needs polish but has tons of potential.
4. Kwaku Boateng, Wilfred Laurier:
An absolutely lethal pass rusher with moves more polished than most USports D-linemen. Can over-rush and take him self out of the play. Used to double teams so he could shock some tackles in games who try to take him on 1-on-1 next year. Not yet ready to be a every down player.
5. Justin Vaughn, Fordham:
A division all-star in the FCS who plays the run very well. Slow first step that may hurt him with the CFL neutral zone, but has moves in his repertoire to compensate. Listed as a DT but can bounce outside when needed.
6. Connor McGough, Calgary:
Speed demon off the edge, running a 4.73s 40yd. Motors through tackles on tape with a variety of moves, both speed and power. On the smaller side but versatile, will be able to contribute on every special teams’ unit instantly. Athletic enough that he was a power blocker and tight end in goal line sets for the Dinos offence. A Special Teamer now, a star down the road.
7. Fabion Foote, McMaster:
Absolutely mind blowing leg strength. Squats 600 lbs and broad jumps almost ten feet as a defensive tackle. Active hands compliment his power lifter thighs.
8. Kay Okafor, St. FX:
Raw athlete who benefits from AUS competition inflating his stats. Very mouldable. Has a very high ceiling with his natural athleticism.
9. Sam Narkaj, Concordia:
A place holder, strong as an ox and impossible to move off the ball. Has the ability to play offensive line in a pinch, which adds value.
10. Evan Foster, Manitoba:
Super versatile athlete. Can move inside or outside and play linebacker. Smaller body with quick hands. Will run around on special teams and be a stud.
11. Mathieu Dupuis, Montreal:
Often overshadowed by his teammate Junior Luke. Very fast with impressive bench strength. Could roll through multiple positions and play special teams.
12. Jeremie Drouin, Westshore Rebels:
High motor pass rushing defensive tackle. A key cog for the Westshore Rebels championship run. Just tosses players around with brute strength.
13. Jake Narbonne, Alberta:
Bull strong and surprisingly quick. A bright spot on a poor Alberta team. Can plug up the middle.
14. Mark Mackie, McMaster:
Small in size but with a motor which just doesn’t stop. His attitude in combine 1-on-1s was infectious. Will run around on special teams.
15. Alexandre Gagnon, Sherbrooke:
A versatile line player. Has the speed to rush the edge and strength to flex inside. Will be a very good special teamer.