NFL Draft Scouting Reports: The Definitive Jalen Carter Scouting Report - January 6 | 2023 NFL DRAFT

Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl - Ohio State v Georgia
Will Jalen Carter be the top defender drafted in the 2023 NFL Draft?

PLAYER: Jalen Carter

TEAM: Georgia Bulldogs

YEAR: Junior



SPEED (projection): 4.96




During Georgia Bulldogs' magical 2022-'23 National Championship season, the defense featured plenty of future 1st round picks, including #1 overall pick Travon Walker. Throw in Jordan Davis and Devonte Wyatt, and the Bulldogs had three 1st round defensive linemen drafted in the 1st round of the 2022 NFL Draft.

And yet, Georgia Junior DT Jalen Carter has better tape than ALL of them. Defensive tackles who can cause havoc in an NFL backfield don't fall off trees, and Jalen Carter does just that.


Jalen Carter has the traits that NFL evaluators salivate over. Carter is electric off the line of scrimmage as he explodes into gaps and is a natural backfield penetrator. He is a size/speed physical specimen.

Carter has length that can disarm an offensive lineman from getting inside his pads. He was productive during his time in Georgia and his talent matches his production. He is as 'clean' a prospect that exists in the 2023 NFL Draft.


If an offensive lineman can get their hands on Jalen Carter and control him initially, Carter struggles to get off blocks. He has good length, but must use it consistently, which he doesn't always do.

Carter doesn't have strong legs in the trenches. He can play unbalanced at times because of his lack of stability with his bottom half. He spent a few too many snaps against Ohio State on the sideline and appeared to be a bit winded, leading to some concerns about stamina.


Jalen Carter is a surefire top-five pick in the 2023 NFL Draft. Finding a player with Carter's talent and archetype at the DT position is rare. The NFL falls in love with players who can instantly apply pressure on the QB, and Jalen Carter fits the bill.

If you are looking for a stout run stuffer or a prototypical nose tackle, Carter isn't your guy. He is tailor-made for a penetrating 4-3 DT or a 3-4 DE. He needs to get stronger, particularly in the bottom half.

Carter will develop more consistency in run defense and will be an asset there down the line, but from day one, he will be a plus pass-rusher up the middle of the offensive line. He is in the conversation to be the #1 pick in the 2023 NFL Draft.

He certainly is in play as the top defender drafted. An immediate impact starter at the NFL level, Jalen Carter won't have to wait long to hear his name called during the 2023 NFL Draft.

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Edited by Mudeet Arora