How often do you see a player projected to go in the top 20 that didn't even start for his college team? Van Ness fits the profile that Murphy and White do - long, strong and could have his best football ahead of him.
* = unofficial measurement
A versatile pass rusher with a hockey background, Van Ness made the most of the reps he got while at Iowa.
He’s loaded with traits: length, lean mass, colossal hands, straight line speed, burst and power from top to bottom. Van Ness maximizes that power with bullrushes, long arms and clubs to throw blockers off balance. He’s relatively unfazed by contact throughout his rush, especially from running backs or tight ends trying to chip.
That’s simply how Van Ness wins right now: nonstop power and effort. While it can be difficult to continue that trend in the NFL (where everyone is big and strong), he has pass rush wins against both Peter Skoronski and Paris Johnson, arguably the top two OL in this draft. He’s more athletic than a majority of the blockers in front of him and his change of direction is better than you’d expect at his size.
He has the size and hands to set a hard edge in the run game, but needs to play with better pad level to not lose leverage. His instincts are a step behind his play speed and he didn’t blow up a lot of run plays behind the line of scrimmage.
Van Ness comes with risk because he won’t be able to bully everyone in the trenches at the next level, but he’s been on the right development path over the last two years. He’s tapped into his raw ability enough that at a minimum he should be an average starter who can handle multiple alignments up front. If he reaches his ceiling, he’ll be a top 10 edge rusher in the NFL.