Chase Young stats: Former Ohio State star could be best defensive end of last decade

Chase Young #2 of the Ohio State Buckeyes reacts against the Ohio State Buckeyes (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Chase Young #2 of the Ohio State Buckeyes reacts against the Ohio State Buckeyes (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /

Chase Young stats are eye-opening, especially when you compare his production at Ohio State to former top NFL Draft picks like Joey Bosa and Myles Garrett.

Chase Young was unstoppable last year for the Ohio State Buckeyes and his stats and off-field testing has in a position to be one of the first players taken in the 2020 NFL Draft. But how does Young compare to the top defensive ends taken over the last decade and what can we learn about his stats to project his NFL future production?

Young is projected to go as high as No. 2 to the Washington Redskins but shouldn’t slide out of the top three or four picks. The top defensive end usually gets taken with one of the first three-five picks.

To project how Young’s stats line up with defensive ends who went in the top-11 picks over the last decade, I compared the stats across the board to see if we can project his future.

Last year it was former Ohio State star and Young’s teammate, Nick Bosa, who went second overall and was followed by former Clemson star Clelin Ferrell who went fourth to the Oakland Raiders.

In 2018, former N.C. State star Bradley Chubb went to the Denver Broncos with the fifth overall pick. In 2017, Myles Garrett was the first overall pick of the Cleveland Browns.

In 2017, Joey Bosa went to the San Diego Chargers with the third overall pick. The seventh pick that year was former Oregon star Deforest Buckner who went to the San Francisco 49ers.

Jadeveon Clowney was the No. 1 pick in the 2015 draft out of South Carolina.

Dion Jordan went third overall to the Miami Dolphins in 2013 and Ezekiel Ansah went fifth that year to the Detroit Lions.

Finally, the Houston Texans used the No. 11 pick in the 2011 draft on Wisconsin star J.J. Watt.

Even casual NFL fans will recognize several of those names as college stars who became studs in the NFL. While it’s not full of Pro Bowlers, here’s what we can glean from Young’s stats and what it means for his NFL future and the team who ends up drafting the Ohio State star.

Chase Young stats compared to former top defensive ends

These are the defensive ends who were taken in the top-11. Yes, there are studs taken later in the draft, and being a top pick doesn’t guarantee superstardom. However, the purpose of this is to compare the top draft prospects based on college stats, and then we can make the projections where necessary.

Chase Young stats
Chase Young stats vs. former top NFL Draft picks /

The first takeaway is looking at Jordan and Ansah who are the biggest busts on this list, for differing reasons. In hindsight, their college stats didn’t make them the elite draft prospects that their draft position would indicate.

Young appears to be bust-proof if there is such a thing when dealing with an inexact science like the NFL Draft. Provided Young stays healthy and avoids catastrophic injury, he should be a top-line player for a long time.

Comparing Young to the Bosa Brothers is the natural one to make as they were both coached by Larry Johnson at Ohio State. Young has better stats than Nick Bosa who looked like an All-Pro as a rookie for the 49ers. Joey Bosa was a better end against the run but Young is a better pass-rusher and caused more turnovers.

Ferrell, Chubb and Buckner played in more games over their four years in college compared to three for Young. The jury is still out on Ferrell who was a disappointment as a rookie but it’s too soon to put him in the Jordan or Ansah category as a bust. Chubb looks like a perennial double-digit sack performer and Bucker is an All-Pro.

This is great company for Young to be in so far.

Comparing Young to the pair of No. 1 overall picks promises good things for his future.

Garrett is the only player in this group over the last decade to have a better sack rate than Young, and he only had him by .5 sacks. Garrett also has the edge in tackles and tackles for loss, but Young has him in forced fumbles. In short, Young could have been the No. 1 pick in the draft if it wasn’t for Joe Burrow and the Cincinnati Bengals holding the top pick.

Clowney was unstoppable his first two years at South Carolina before a disappointing junior season, but he still tops Young with tackles, tackles for loss and had the same number of forced fumbles. Young gets the edge as a sack artist.

Comparing Young to Watt needs further context. Watt began his college career as a tight end at Central Michigan before walking-on at Wisconsin and switching to defensive end. This explains his numbers compared to the others on the list. The three-time NFL Defensive Player of the Year is a future first-ballot Hall of Famer.

Chase Young stats
Chase Young #2 of the Ohio State Buckeyes (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) /

What do Chase Young’s stats tell us about his NFL future?

He’s going to be really, really good.

If the Redskins or Lions had the top pick, he’d be the first pick in the draft and have expectations placed on him like the Bosas, Garrett and Clowney.

Young is used to having lofty expectations on him. He had to replace Nick Bosa and he not only replaced him, but he was better than him across the board.

Going to the NFL will not stop Young from stuffing the box score and racking up tackles for loss, sacks and forcing fumbles. That is what he does best and he does it better than almost all of the top defensive ends of the last decade.

The term “generational talent” gets thrown around way too much, but in the case of Young, it fits.

He is a generational pass-rusher who will be a multiple-time Pro Bowler and could top 100 career sacks as long as he stays healthy.

The team that drafts Young, whether it’s the Redskins, Lions or someone else, will be getting a player we may look back on in a few years as one of the best defensive ends in NFL history.

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