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2025 NFL Draft: Patrick Payton Preseason Scouting Report

No edge rushers were selected in the top ten of the 2024 NFL Draft. Florida State’s Patrick Payton intends to end that streak in 2025.

Patrick Payton NFL Draft Overview

There are few positions more important in the modern NFL than pass rusher. Getting after the quarterback is as valuable as it gets. It becomes much easier to deal with Patrick Mahomes and Josh Allen when they have to get the ball out of their hands much quicker. Players like Micah Parsons and Nick Bosa are earning contracts that rival quarterback money. Why is that? It is because they can make those quarterbacks look human. That importance is further reflected in the NFL Draft. 

While there were no pass rushers taken in the top ten of the 2024 NFL Draft; that trend is bound to change in 2025. Many mock drafts have Tennessee’s James Pearce as the first overall pick. Outside of him, there are several others who may find themselves in the top ten. One of those is Florida State’s Patrick Payton. Payton has the requisite length and bend to be an elite pass rusher at the next level. With more mass and another productive season, Payton could find himself in the top ten of next April’s draft. 

Position: EDGE

Height: 6’5” (Unofficial)

Weight: 254 Pounds (Unofficial)

School: Florida State 

Patrick Payton 2024 NFL profile 


  • Has shown flashes of elite bend off the edge
  • Excellent length 
  • Flexible hips
  • Great movement skills to turn and chase
  • Some good reps in the run game
  • Early breakout age
  • Bats down passes at the line of scrimmage


  • Could have a better get-off and ability to time the snap
  • Needs to add more mass before stepping onto an NFL field
  • Plays very high at times and can get washed down in the run game

Projection: Top 15 pick

Bottom Line on Patrick Payton

Patrick Payton, a dynamic pass rusher for the Florida State Seminoles, has all of the requisite tools to be a Pro Bowl type of pass rusher in the NFL. Payton burst onto the scene for FSU in 2022, as a Redshirt Freshman. Payton posted six tackles for loss and five sacks in 2022. As a full-time starter in 2023, Payton answered with 14.5 tackles for loss and seven sacks. Payton also batted ten passes in 2023. He is poised for another stellar season in 2024 as the focal point of a Seminole defense losing several key starters. 

Payton already has the traits necessary to go in the top ten. Where he needs to improve is in the run game and in the weight room. Payton was rumored to be playing at around 240 pounds last season. The Florida State program has listed him at 254 pounds, meaning he may be adding mass. Should Payton learn to play with more power and physicality, he will be a lock to go in the top ten. Another jump from Payton will make him a household name in the 2025 NFL Draft cycle.

Main Photo: Ehsan Kassim/Tallahassee Democrat-USA TODAY NETWORK


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