An intriguing defensive line prospect that could help the Las Vegas Raiders next year is West Virginia’s Darius Stills. Let’s take a look at this stud’s potential.
Stills has a lot of upside and could bring much needed pressure from the inside, but there’s work to be done. We all know about Rod Marinelli’s body of work with prospects, just take a look at what he accomplished in Dallas. We’re assuming he’ll remain defensive coordinator past this season, for the sake of this article we’ll go with that assumption.
The Raiders could mold Stills, he has both a motor and the raw strength to back it up. Jordan Reid of the Draft Network points out that Stills is very aggressive in his pursuit and plays violently off the line. Fact is, the Silver and Black need to generate more pressure from the inside, we’ve seen what Clelin Ferrell can do from the outside this year. Reid noted Stills can definitely generate said pressure. If that’s the case, he’ll be disrupting opposing offensive lines if it can translate into the NFL.
What did his college career look like? Should Raiders be impressed?
Looking at his collegiate career since 2018, Stills put up impressive numbers. As a side note, as of the time of this publication, Stills has foregone playing the rest of this season. Regardless, in that three year span, Stills played a total of 28 games at West Virginia. He amassed 46 solo tackles, 10.5 sacks, two forced fumbles, and 23 tackles that were for a loss.
Noteworthy recognition that Stills received in 2019 was as follows: #6 in sacks for the Big 12 and #3 in forced fumbles as well. According to Pro Football Focus, Stills took a total of 471 snaps along the defensive line this season. While Reid mentioned Stills’ weakness is how he approaches the run game, PFF actually shows that his strength statistically. He graded at 77.9 for run defense, if he can excel in that department, he’ll fill in Johnathan Hankins‘ shoes. This is assuming the Raiders don’t resign him. All in all, there’s upside there with Stills, maybe as a third-round selection if he’s there, possibly second. We’ll keep an eye on him as we get closer to the NFL Combine season.
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*Top Photo: William Wotring/ The Dominion Post