Aaron Donald


Class: Senior
Height: 6’0 1/2″
Weight: 288 lbs.
School: Pittsburgh

  • 2013’s most decorated & accomplished defensive player
  • Rotary Lombardi Award Winner – top interior lineman (2013)
  • Nagurski Award Winner – nation’s best defensive player (2013)
  • Bednarik Award Winner – nation’s best defensive player (2013)
  • First-team All-ACC (2013)
  • First-team All-Big East (2012)
  • 2013 stats:  59 tackles, 11 sacks and 28.5 TFL

Senior Bowl Notes

  • The nation’s most decorated defender accepted an invitation to play in the 2014 Senior Bowl in Mobile
  • Monday was a “show me” day for Donald.  He was matched up with Baylor G Cyril Richardson throughout the practice.  Richardson has four inches on Donald and nearly 50 pounds.  Yet, Donald whipped him all day long.  In run fit 1-on-1 Donald whipped the hulky Baylor Bear.  In pass rush, 1-on-1 Donald literally knocked Richardson on his backside.  During team drills, Donald was so quick off the ball that CSU C Weston Richburg couldn’t even get a hand on him.  Hopefully, Donald will get to face a few of the other North OL throughout the week.
  • One NFL defensive coach I spoke with said, “there are just too many guys who don’t have prototype bodies or size around the NFL who continue to produce on the defensive line” and that “teams have got to just look at how this kid plays – it’s that simple…. his game tape is good.”
  • Donald showed great anchor against double teams and was unblockable in one on one drills, but his size will be an issue as many teams have privately confided that they don’t know whether they can play him on non-passing downs due to his lack of size.


Let’s me be as clear as possible, if Aaron Donald were 6’3″ and 300 pounds, there’s no question he’d be a top ten pick.  But, he isn’t and he won’t be because of it and only for that reason.  He has the full package every defensive lineman craves.  Power.  Quickness.  Feet.  Hands.  Hand placement.  Leverage.  He’s just short…er and small…er.

So what?  He can play.  He’s hellified disruptive, gets into OL quickly, takes away the separation easily, drives OL back into the backfield and is one of a rare breed of playmaking defensive linemen.  He’ll be under the microscope all week long down in Mobile as teams attempt to figure out where he fits best in their particular scheme.  He’ll show that he can play a number of different positions in odd or even fronts, but mainly that he can PLAY.  There’s no measuring stick needed to prove that truth.