Rookie Scouting Spotlight: Owamagbe Odighizuwa – 2015 NFL Draft

Nicolaou BYLINEThe Rookie Scouting Spotlight Series on RosterWatch is written by Chris Nicolaou. Check back often as he adds new 2015 NFL draft prospects to his notebook, and make sure to tune in to RosterWatch on SiriusXM to hear Chris’s additional thoughts and breakdowns along with other RW writers and contributors. Follow Chris Nicolaou on Twitter @cnic_11

Owamagbe Odighizuwa, DE UCLA

Height: 6′ 3 1/2″
Weight: 266
Hand: 11 1/8″
Arm: 33 1/8″
Wingspan: 81 3/4″
40-yard dash: 4.69 (projected)

NFL Comparison: Tamba Hali

Owamagbe (goes by ‘Owa’ or ‘Diggy’) Odighizuwa (Oh-DIGGY-zoo-wuh) played a versatile role on the edge and along the defensive line of the Bruins hybrid 3-4 defense. Odighizuwa played significantly as a 3-technique in under and sub-packages, but also flashed as a player who stood up and rushed the passer as a 5-tech where he lined up on both sides of the defense situationally through 2014. In his career, he totaled 128 tackles, of which 13 were for losses. His low career sack number (11.5) has some concerned, but his main role, as is the case for many two-gapping defenders, was often more to open holes for linebackers to come downhill and exploit. Odighizuwa missed the entire 2013 season with a hip injury which required two separate surgeries, but seems to be past that. He does not have impressive numbers, but the tape tells a diverse story. Physically, Odighizuwa is beast and was one of five “weigh-in warriors” at the 2015 Senior Bowl as judged by RosterWatch on physical appearance and attributes alone at the National Scouting Weigh-In.


– Great size to play the OLB spot in a 3-4 or be a stand-up DE in 4-3 – He’s good enough in space to both set the edge as well as hold responsibilities to the flats and to wheel routes out of the backfield

– Lean, muscular, frame – very strong and in-shape

– Has a powerful, quick first step – penetrates well and can disengage from offensive linemen with violent hands

– Extremely athletic, will be a player an NFL coaching staff will like toying with in numerous ways to see how he fits

– Not predictable by offensive linemen as a pass-rusher, he uses a variety of power and finesse moves that keep opponents on their toes

– Fluid hip movement laterally, doesn’t lose contain often when tasked as the force player

– Uses his long arms to his advantage which helps in preventing overextension – a very balanced player

– Plays until the whistle, great motor and a clear team leader

– Has a knack of timing snap well, but not in an undisciplined manner

– Speed is not elite, but should be considered above-average based on 2014 film until proven otherwise through the draft process


– While he appears absolutely chiseled and possesses substantial power, there is room to add some pure upper-body strength

– Not a very productive career stats-wise

– Two hip surgeries, the most important thing about Odighizuwa through the draft process as seen by teams will certainly be the evaluations of his medical history by the clinical staff in Indy

– Pass rush moves are refined in many areas, but the overall package is still a work in progress – needs refinement on finishing his attacks and getting home to the passer with greater efficiency

– Pure pass rusher and edge presence, while he has shown in tape and at the Senior Bowl that he can handle flats and other force responsibility well, he rarely dropped into coverage against athletic players on vertical stems

– Like many 3-4 DEs, can appear “held up” at the point of attack from time to time

. . .

Projected Draft Round: 2nd

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