Drafted: ROUND: 2 - Pick Number: 54 (LAC)
Draft Profile: BioTuli Tuipulotu from Lawndale High School the younger brother of Eagles lineman Marlon Tuipulotu was rated a 3-star recruit by ESPN and handed a 3-star grade by 247 Sports. After high school, Tuipulotu joined USC.
In 2020 as a freshman Tuipulotu saw action in 6 games and played a total of 201 snaps for the Trojans. He recorded 12 tackles, 6 assists, while adding 10 stops. As a pass rusher, he added 9 total pressures, which included 6 QB hurries, a QB hit, and 2 sacks on the season.
As a sophomore for the Trojans in 2021 Tuipulotu played in 12 games and took part in 630 snaps for the Trojans. He recorded 34 tackles, 14 assists, while adding 24 stops. As a pass rusher, he chalked up 29 total pressures, and 17 QB hurries, 6 QB hits, and 6 sacks during the year.
In 2022 as a junior Tuipulotu played in 13 games and contributed on 688 snaps. He recorded 24 tackles, 10 assists while making 28 stops. As a pass rusher, he produced 51 total pressures, which included 33 QB hurries, 6 QB hits, and a league-leading 12.5 sacks on the year.
Honors & awards
- 2022 First-Team All-Pac-12, led the country in sacks (13.5)
- 2022 Unanimous All-American
- 2022 Morris Trophy as the best defensive lineman in the Pac-12
- 2022 Pac-12 Pat Tillman Defensive Player of the Year award
- 2022 finalist for the Bednarik Award
- 2022 finalist for the Rotary Lombardi Award
- 2021 All-Pac-12 first team
- 2021 Phil Steele All-Pac-12 first team
- USC’s 2021 Defensive Lineman of the Year Award and Bob Chandler Award
- 2020 The Athletic Freshman All-American second team
- 2020 Pro Football Focus All-Pac-12 honorable mention
Scouting Report: Strengths
- Super versatile prospect who has played all over the defense - all the way from 1 technique to the wide nine.
- Tuipulotu can also win going speed-to-power, with the leg drive to push blockers back.
- Massively productive in 2022 where he took a major step up - leading the PAC 12 in sacks and also logging 22 TFLs
- Shows a natural feel for setting up blockers and getting them off-balance. His hands are active and violent, and Tuipulotu quickly disengages with blockers and counters when his initial move stalls.
- Really quick first step - with elite acceleration as well as lateral movement skills to mirror running quaterbacks
- While he was primarily used as a pass rusher has skills dropping into coverage - can handle going one on one against tight ends
- His spin move is already NFL-caliber, and he displays a very good motor
- Powerful run defender - knifes through the offensive line blowing up sweeps
- While he's played most of his snaps on the edge - he is most effective on the inside where his high football IQ and accompanying quick processing shows through
- Delivers a strong punch and uses his hands to shed blocks to make plays in the hole or outside the box. Uses lower-body strength to anchor inside.
- Combines strength and footwork to fill holes inside, as well. Recovers from cut blocks or falling on his way to make a tackle.
- His core flexibility and balance are excellent, and he has prototypical length.
Scouting Report: Weaknesses
- His knee bend is only average which limits his effectiveness in the run defense
- His athletic ability is not elite and his refusal to participate in the combine drills and even at his own pro-day raises some red flags with regard to his measurables
- His tackling is only average and we have seen multiple occasions where he hasn't effectively wrapped up the ball carrier
- He's a bit of a tweener - may be too slow for an elite edge and too much too small for an interior player at just 266lbs
- Tuipulotu doesn’t have the elite skill set to bend around the edge; he’ll have to attack gaps as a pass rusher.
- Tuipulotu shows some stiffness often getting pushed past the pocket — he seems more comfortable countering back inside.
- While he moves well laterally, he doesn’t always get there in pursuit.
Scouting Report: SummaryTuli Tuipulotu is a solid prospect who put up elite numbers in 2022 while dominating PAC 12 offensive lines. He's got an excellent pass-rushing bag of tricks as well as an elite first step and is a disciplined and highly intelligent player who's played to the limit of his physical gifts. However there lies his major criticism, his athletism is far from elite, and when given the chance to dispel his doubters at the combine and the USC pro day he opted not to work out - which at least to us is somewhat concerning.
Tuipulotu's weight is also an issue: 266 lbs is much too small for an interior pro player and so may limit him to a pass-rushing specialist role. Overall following the combine we now consider him to be a third-round NFL draft prospect who will be an early contributor in the pros, but whose upside may be limited.
Tuli Tuipulotu percentiles vs other Defensive End's (NFL Combine historically - higher value represents better perfomance)
Update - 03/24/2023Tuipulotu checked in an inch shorter and 24 pounds lighter than billed that's a big deal for a DT. His stock is down.
How other scouting services rate Tuli Tuipulotu (Overall Rank)
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