While it seems likely that a quarterback or perhaps Penn State running back Saquon Barkley will be taken with the number one overall selection in April's draft, NC State edge rusher Bradley Chubb believes he is the top overall prospect.
"My confidence level is going to say I'm the best player. I put it on tape," he told reporters at the Combine. "Four years just putting on tape, good film, I feel like I'm the best player. I'm not going to say anyone is better than me, but there are a lot of good players. Saquon Barkley has put up ridiculous numbers the past couple of days. Josh Allen, Josh Rosen and all of the quarterbacks you're hearing about — great players. And I just feel like I'm there at the top."
Chubb sits atop as the Wolfpack's all-time leader in career sacks, having racked up 26 including 19.5 over his final two collegiate campaigns. A first-team All-American and first-team All-ACC performer, the Bronko Nagurski (best defender) award winner had a staggering 25 tackles for loss his senior year.
"High motor, high energy and passionate. Just a guy who's going to get after the quarterback or whoever has the ball in their hands," Chubb said. "I'm running down the field 50 yards just to get that ball. I'm doing a lot of great things with pass rushing, a lot of great things stopping the run. I had a pretty good season I'd say. Just a guy who's going to play with a relentless motor."
While Chubb was the recipient of the 2017 Ted Hendricks Award, given to the nation's top defensive end, he told reporters that he would have no issue lining up at outside linebacker on Sundays.
"If you watched my film in college, I stood up and dropped a lot," he said. "I covered backs and tight ends, so I wouldn't be uncomfortable doing it."
Football is in Chubb's blood. His father, Aaron, was a defensive lineman at Georgia and was drafted in the 12th round by New England in the 1989 draft. His older brother, Brandon, was an All-ACC linebacker at Wake Forest and his cousin, Nick, just finished his career at UGA as the No. 2 rusher in SEC history.
"It comes from my father and my brother," he said of his work ethic. "Growing up, I watched my brother be in the gym 24/7. My uncle had a gym that he worked us out in. I was in about the eighth grade when I saw him doing it, so I said if I wanted to go to the next level, I have to do something different. I just put my head down and ran into the ball."
Chubb had a good workout in Indy, posting a 4.65 in the 40-yard dash and looking smooth in drills. He also has transformed his body, going from a 270-pounder with 20% body fat to a 269-pounder with a body fat percentage between 10 and 11. The powerful defender is stout against the run, but he'll be taken off the board early because Chubb can make it a long day for opposing quarterbacks.
"My job is to get after one of the best players on the field, one of the highest paid players on the field," he said. "It changes the dynamic of the game. You see in the Super Bowl, sacks cause fumbles at the end of the game. If you look back when the Broncos won (Super Bowl 50), Von Miller was going crazy in that game, Super Bowl MVP. Just the position is such a premium in this league because you're getting after one of the most important positions."
The Jets, who haven't had a true elite edge pass rusher since John Abraham, currently own the sixth overall selection in April's draft. If Chubb somehow gets beyond the top five picks, he could be a great fit for a defense looking to take the next step.
"If you can't find a way to fit Bradley Chubb, it's a you problem. It's not a Bradley Chubb problem," said NFLDraftScout.com's Dane Brugler when asked if Chubb potentially could fit in a 3-4 scheme. let him put his hand in the ground, you let him stand up. Whatever. You can mix and match your personnel to get him on the field and make sure he's doing what he does best and that's getting after the quarterback."
Top Images of the Defensive Linemen Working Out at the NFL Combine