The Houston Texans need depth along the defensive line which could have them looking for some young talent in the draft, could they consider Gerald Dixon, Jr. from South Carolina?
While he may not be a household name, Gerald Dixon, Jr. has the size and bloodlines to be a player in the NFL. His father was an NFL linebacker who played ten seasons in the league. Dixon also has a brother who plays for the same SEC school, who happens to be named Gerald Dixon.
The two are just five months apart and ended up starting at tackle and defensive end for the South Carolina Gamecocks, where they played against some serious NFL-level talent. That may have caused some confusion, but we will make sure we are looking at the nose tackle, Dixon, Jr. here.
Weight: 325 pounds
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Two-year starter with the size and strength to play at the next level. He is ideally a 3-4 nose tackle who uses his hands well and has a sturdy body which allows him to play with great control. Solid against the run.
Unfortunately there may be more weaknesses to his game than strengths as he has a somewhat slow reaction time and has trouble getting off blocks, even against smaller centers. The 325-pounder also offers nothing in terms of pass rush. His biggest knock however seems to be a lack of fire on every play, which could be something a quality defensive line coach could work with.
Dixon, Jr. didn’t fill the stats sheets during his college days, but that’s not the true sign of a quality nose tackle anyway. The question comes down to whether or not he can occupy blockers and be a force in the run game.
There are surely questions about that, which means Dixon will most likely become an unrestricted free agent or seventh round selection at best. However, there are worse ways to spend a late round pick and with the lack of nose tackles on the team, a seventh round choice on a guy with NFL bloodlines could be worth it.
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