Mazi Smith is a stout, physical interior defender. Smith had high expectations coming into the 2022 season but struggled to meet them. He finished the season with 48 tackles, 2.5 tackles for loss and a half sack.
Smith has a prototypical nose tackle build at 6'3" and 323 pounds. He has good power in his hands but needs to work on connecting his upper body strength with his lower half. Smith got driven by doubles easier than you'd like for player that will likely be relied on to eat blocks at the next level. When Smith does get single blocked, though, he's typically able to punch, extend, and shed violently.
Smith is a more agile pass rusher than a typical nose would be. He's able to use quickness gain leverage and then tries to power the rest of his way in. Smith lacks the technique and juice necessary to be a Javon Hargrave level rusher but with coaching he should be able to grow into a more consistent threat when isolated on an IOL.
Smith would best fit as a 3-4 nose tackle or a 4-3 1 technique at the next level. His physical tools should eventually result in a starting role.