Phidarian Mathis NFL Draft Overview
Position: Defensive tackle
Weight: 312 pounds
School: University of Alabama
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Phidarian Mathis 2022 NFL Draft Profile
Mathis was recruited as a four-star high school prospect out of the state of Louisiana. He was an elite defensive lineman at Neville High School in Monroe, Louisiana. As well as being a sensational player, he was highly ranked by several sports outlets. Mathis was ranked fourth in the state of Louisiana by Rivals and 24/7 Sports while being ranked number two in the state by ESPN as a high school prospect. Additionally, he was ranked as the number seven defensive tackle in the nation by 24/7 Sports and number 37 in ESPN‘s 300. Also, he received All-State accolades as a four-star recruit. Incidentally, to the disappointment of many LSU fans, Mathis chose to play for Alabama instead of his home state SEC school.
Surprisingly, many draft analysts have Mathis predicted to be no better than a late third or early fourth-round draft selection. Mathis played well enough to help get Alabama to the College Playoff National Championship game. But his low draft expectations are mostly a result of him being a late bloomer as a college player. However, that was due to Mathis having to wait his turn in a crowded Alabama defensive front behind the likes of Da’Ron Payne, Christian Barmore, Raekwon Davis, and Quinnen Williams. Mathis’ first year at Alabama was 2017 and he was redshirted. He did make the All-SEC freshman team in 2018 but did not receive any accolades for the 2019 season after being used as a rotational player on Alabama’s defense.
Mathis Had a Breakout Senior Season
The 2021 season was a breakout year Mathis. He was a team captain, second-team All-American, All-SEC second team, and a Reese’s Senior Bowl All-American as a redshirt senior. He had a career-high nine sacks, 53 tackles, a forced fumble, and two fumble recoveries after only having one sack prior to the 2021 season. His nine sacks were the second most on Alabama behind college football’s sack leader and teammate, Will Anderson, and ranked third in the SEC. Furthermore, he was named a defensive player of the week by the Alabama coaches for five different games.
- Good size for his position;
- Ability to shed blockers;
- Ability to be a bull rusher;
- Run stopper;
- Good hands;
- Very strong;
- One dimensional player;
- Lunges forward sometimes;
- Not very athletic;
- Not always able to get a good anchor;
- Can be pushed to the ground if hands are too high;
- Not quick on edges;
NFL Comparison: Da’Ron Payne
Teams with need at the position: Arizona Cardinals, Dallas Cowboys, Houston Texans, Kansas City Chiefs, Los Angeles Chargers, Pittsburgh Steelers, San Francisco 49ers, and Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Bottom Line on Phidarian Mathis
Projection: Late third-early fourth round.
When Mathis’ name is called in the draft, it most likely will not be in the first round. However, that is not because Mathis isn’t good. He is an outstanding player. But Mathis only had one good year during his college career and in that season there were mistakes that need to be cleaned up. Mathis will develop into a good NFL defender under the right coach. Any team that drafts him will be getting a quality player. Just like his college career began, Mathis’ NFL career may also see him begin as a rotational player. Expect Mathis to be drafted in the third or fourth round.