FanShot

Prototypical Defensive Lineman

6

5-Technique (3-4 DE) – Justin Smith Another technique in need of a new prototype, with the injuries to Ty Warren, we’re looking for a new person to pass the torch to. The traditional 5-technique is a two-gap player, lining up directly over the offensive tackle, and responsible for the B- and C-gaps on his side of the formation. He has to be able to stack tall offensive tackles and shed blocks to make the stop in either one of his gaps. 3-4 nose tackles can control their gaps on the interior with sheer bulk (in short areas their strength and size is paramount), but on the edge, against taller tackles, 5-technique players need not just size but ‘length’ (height and arm length combined). At 6’4 and 290lbs, Justin Smith has the requisite size, length and agility to dominate this position. He also has fearsome strength, plays with fantastic leverage, and has a motor that simply won’t quit. This allows the 49ers to use him in multiple positions on their D-line, kicking inside to more of a 3-technique role in nickel situations, and makes him the most dominant 3-4 DE in the game. Justin Smith is more than good enough at every facet of the game to be the NFL’s new prototype 5-technique. Alternative prototypes: J.J. Watt, Brett Keisel, Glenn Dorsey and Tyson Jackson

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