One thing I love about Nix is that he can play all three downs. He’s a great run defender as he’ll usually command a double team. When he’s not doubled team, he can win in a one-on-one battle. His pass rushing ability is also impressive. In college he didn’t get many sacks, but stats don’t tell the whole story here. Nix is able to penetrate the pocket and disrupt the quarterback from the middle. This is rare to see from a 1-technique. The reason he was so successful in college, is because of his explosiveness. For a big man, Nix is extremely quick off the line of scrimmage and can gain the upper hand on his opponent. He has an excellent push and can penetrate and disrupt the offense. Nix has all the ability that you want to see from a three down defensive tackle.
There are a bit of concerns with Nix though. Since he’s such a big guy, stamina may be an issue. He’s a three down player, but will he actually be able to play all three downs? Nix also does not have any answers when he’s double teamed. He has the potential to be an elite defensive tackle, but he needs to be able to beat double teams to do so. Lastly, there is a concern for his injury. His 2013 season was cut short due to a torn meniscus in his knee.
Louis Nix has a rare combination of size, strength, and speed. I don’t expect him to constantly make big plays, but his presence will be felt in other ways. The Cowboys need a player that can control the line of scrimmage on the defensive side of the ball, and Nix can be that guy. He’s a rare prospect that fits our biggest need. Nix should be one of the top prospects the Cowboys target in the draft.