Dec 3, 2011; Charlotte, NC, USA; Clemson Tigers defensive end Andre Branch (40) rushes the passer against the Virginia Tech Hokies at Bank of America Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeremy Brevard-US PRESSWIRE

Detroit Lions Draft Prospects: Andre Branch, DE, Clemson

Andre Branch, DE, Clemson
Height: 6’4″
Weight: 259 lbs.
Arms: 34″
Hands: 9″
40-Yard Dash: 4.70 sec
Bench Press: 19 reps
Vertical Jump: 32.5″
Broad Jump: 120″
3-Cone Drill: 7.19 sec
20-Yard Shuttle: 4.25 sec
Watch his combine workout here

NFL Mocks breaks down Andre Branch like this:

PROS: Quickness off the ball, length, overall NFL size, potential for scheme versatility, pretty good athlete, makes plays both in running and passing game, athleticism can wear on defenders as the game progresses, obviously well-conditioned.

CONS: Tendency to whiff, can get dominated at POA, roughly half of season sacks came in one game, needs to continue to mature as a player, limited sample size, doesn’t have a problem getting upfield in a hurry, but sometimes needs to work more at closing in on QB and not relying on broken play sacks.

Clemson defensive end Andre Branch is not guaranteed to get drafted in the first round but it isn’t out of the realm of possibility that he could crash the party Thursday night. The Lions at least had enough interest to bring him to the team facilities for a pre-draft visit but are they interested enough to use their first round draft pick on him? The Lions do their due diligence to explore their options under a variety of circumstances, perhaps they looked into Branch in case they are able to trade back.

ESPN’s Todd McShay had the Packers selecting Andre Branch with the 28th pick in his mock 5.0. He’d play as an outside linebacker in the Packers 3-4 scheme but is regarded as a player that is capable of playing defensive end in a 4-3 as well. He played out of a two-point and three-point stance at Clemson so he is used to being used in a variety of ways – a trait the Lions will like.

Branch is better as a pass rusher than playing the run at this point but he generally stays disciplined and keeps contain. Shortcomings against the run aren’t for a lack of effort. All in all, seems like a guy that would be easy to picture in Honolulu blue and silver.

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Tags: 2012 NFL Draft Andre Branch Detroit Lions

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