2021 NFL Draft Scouting Report: EDGE Daelin Hayes

Photo: Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports


EDGE defender Daelin Hayes projects as a hybrid pass rusher in the NFL. The Irish used him frequently in 2020 to stack in a two-point stance and attack the LOS from tight alignments. He did well there, too—Hayes nearly equaled his career-high for a single season with six tackles for loss and tied his career-high with three sacks on the year. Hayes appeared slimmed down in 2020 and was listed at 258 pounds, which allowed him to play with some nice fluidity and smoothness to go along with his length and heavy hands on the edge. Hayes will draw plenty of appeal for his build—he’s ready to step in and contend at the point of attack and his ability to reset blockers and collapse to generate some creases in protection will afford him the chance to serve as a valuable role player in the NFL. Hayes’ ceiling, without further fundamental development, is an early-down defender on the LOS who would need several other prominent pieces in an attack style defense to afford him on-vs-ones and wins as a pass rusher with any level of consistency. That said, he’s got a clear role to play and could start in the right environment.

Ideal Role: SAM linebacker.

Scheme Fit: 4-3 under front.

Written by Kyle Crabbs

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Written By:

Kyle Crabbs

Director of Scouting

Kyle Crabbs is the Director of Scouting for The Draft Network. Prior to his time with TDN, Kyle worked for seven years as the founder of his own third-party scouting service, NDT Scouting. Providing media coverage and also consultation services for agencies, Crabbs penned an annual NFL Draft Prospectus featuring 300+ player profiles on an annual basis from 2014-2020. Crabbs is currently the co-host of the Draft Dudes podcast with fellow TDN scout Joe Marino and helps coordinate TDN's national scouting effort.

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