Andre Branch Scouting Report
Andre Branch - Clemson (HT: 6-4¼ - WT: 259)
Positives -- Very athletic frame with prototypical height, has the type of overall athleticism that will intrigue teams, could play OLB in a 3-4 scheme... Has some collegiate experience playing outside linebacker and dropping into coverage, but has primarily played RDE ('bandit') at Clemson the past two
seasons, including opposite 2010 NCAA sack leader Da'Quan Bowers... Plays with a good base and low center of gravity, good flexibility and body control to evade blockers and turn the corner... Good straight-line speed and short area quickness, changes direction well and moves well laterally, good closing speed... Long arms with strong, quick hands, can control linemen and gain initial leverage to create space for himself, can be violent and disengages well, is physical at the point of attack, works through contact... Has solid power for the bull rush and can beat linemen with good inside moves and disrupts passing lanes when he can't reach the quarterback... Plays the run well; very good stack and shed type player with strong upper half, can push the pocket... Disciplined in backside pursuit, holds the edge reasonably well and maintains outside containment, doesn't take himself out of plays... Plays with a strong motor, relentless in pursuit, breaks down reasonably well in space and has the blend of speed and power to deliver some big hits, flashes a mean streak... Has all the physical tools to be a force at the next level, is a similar prospect to former Clemson product Ricky Sapp, who fell to the fifth round only because of knee issues; Branch will be drafted much higher... Has a lot of untapped potential, and produced more playing out of the shadow of Bowers.
Negatives -- Average and inconsistent burst off the edge, isn't explosive off the snap, can be slow to react to the snap and can't consistently threaten the edge... Needs to add an additional 8-12 pounds of bulk to be considered a three-down defensive end in a 4-3, can't consistently hold up at the point, and struggles versus double teams... Plays a little high at times, rises up and allows linemen under his pads, causing him to be slower to shed and lose a step... Will miss some tackles, will take some bad angles in pursuit, and needs to wrap up better instead of going for the big hit... Doesn't have much in terms of pass rush arsenal and needs to develop counter moves... Gauged the eye of a Florida State offensive lineman during a play in 2010, had many analysts calling for a suspension; was similar to Brandon Spikes' eye-gouging of a Georgia player in 2009, which led to a first half suspension his next game... A bit of a tweener who has yet to establish himself as a definite 4-3 or 3-4 prospect... Groin injury kept him out of the Senior Bowl.
Combine Results
Height 6042
Weight 259
Arm 34
Hand 9
40-Time 4.70
Vertical 32.5
Broad 10'0"
Bench Press
Shuttle 4.25
Cone 7.19
At Clemson -- (Official School Bio) Defensive end who has 112 tackles, 16.5 tackles for loss, seven sacks, 23 quarterback pressures, and 10 pass breakups in 1,131 snaps over 34 games (13 starts) in his career... has made at least one tackle in 27 straight games... 2011 Ted Hendricks Award Watch List member in the preseason... 2011 CFPA Defensive Lineman Trophy Watch List member in the preseason... 2011 preseason third-team All-ACC by Athlon and Phil Steele... tied for fourth on the team in vertical jump (35.5"). 2010: Solid Rock Award winner among defensive ends... had 55 tackles, 7.5 tackles for loss, five sacks, 15 quarterback pressures, and seven pass breakups in 13 starts (651 snaps)... second on the team in sacks and tied for third in quarterback pressures... gave Clemson a great defensive end tandem with Da'Quan Bowers... had four combined tackles for loss in the first two games... had three tackles for loss and two sacks against Presbyterian College; named team defensive player-of-the-game by the coaches... had seven tackles at #15 Auburn... had four tackles against Georgia Tech when he played linebacker... had five tackles, a sack, and four quarterback pressures against #23 N.C. State... had seven tackles in 55 snaps against #17 South Carolina... had six tackles, two tackles for loss, and a sack in 51 snaps against South Florida. 2009: Did not start a game, but played in all 14 games for an average of 24 snaps per game... finished the year with 46 tackles, including eight for loss... the tackle total was second-best among non-starters and his eight tackles for loss tied for fourth-best on the team... had four tackles in 21 snaps off the bench in the win over Kentucky in the Music City Bowl... had at least four tackles in eight of the 14 games, including six of the last seven... had just one tackle against Virginia, but it was a big 11-yard sack... had season-high five tackles in wins over Middle Tennessee and Coastal Carolina... had violent six-yard sack against Wake Forest... had at least one tackle for loss in four straight games at mid-season, Clemson won all four of those games... had four tackles in career-high 41 plays at N.C. State.
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