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Noah Spence | Defensive Lineman

Team: Eastern Kentucky Colonels
Ht / Wt:  6'2" / 251

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Buccaneers selected Eastern Kentucky DE Noah Spence with the No. 39 overall pick in the 2016 draft.
Spence (6'3/251) spent one season at EKU after transferring from Ohio State, dominating his FCS competition with 22.5 tackles for loss and 11.5 sacks. Spence was a 2013 first-team All-Big Ten pick before his transfer, which resulted from two positive tests for Ecstacy. Spence got treatment for his habit, checking into rehab and making a full recovery. A good-not-great athlete for his size, Spence clocked 4.80 with a 10-foot-1 broad jump in Indy. He wins off the edge with an unrelenting motor and energy in sideline-to-sideline pursuit. Spence may never lead the NFL in sacks, but he has 8-12 sack potential if he keeps his head on straight. Fri, Apr 29, 2016 07:56:00 PM

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NFL Media insider Ian Rapoport reports that the Cowboys are attempting to trade up to the No. 32 pick with the Cleveland Browns.

Pick No. 32 will be the first pick when the second round kicks off Friday night. Per Rapoport, the Cowboys are eyeing a pass-rusher. Among the available talents that would fit that bill, Eastern Kentucky edge rusher Noah Spence or perhaps Boise State edge rusher Kamalei Correa.
Fri, Apr 29, 2016 02:58:00 PM

An NFL scout who spoke with the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel said that Eastern Kentucky edge rusher Noah Spence is a strict pass-rush weapon at this point in his development.

While some are scared off by Spence's past drug use and off-field activity, at least one scout who spoke with the Sentinel is also uncertain about portions of his on-field play. "He doesn't know how to play the run at all. My biggest concern is, this guy runs under blocks in the run game. He's just a DPR (designated pass rusher) right now. He's a boom or bust." Other scouts who chatted with the outlet brought up the obligatory character questions, with one saying, "you have to decide if you want to put up with him."
Fri, Apr 29, 2016 02:45:00 PM

ESPN's Adam Schefter reports no prospects failed the NFL Combine's drug test this year.

As Schefter notes, this is the first time in recent memory this has happened. At least two or three per year, and frequently big name prospects, have their results leaked at some point in March or April. That did not happen this year, obviously. Teams certainly know of numerous prospects who failed drug tests during college, but at least those or other prospects passed the NFL Combine's testing.
Mon, Apr 25, 2016 10:03:00 AM

An AFC personnel director believes that Eastern Kentucky edge rusher Noah Spence has more natural ability than Ohio State DE Joey Bosa.

"[Spence]'s going to have a long career in this league. I would say that he's got more natural ability than Joey Bosa," the director said. His two cents are contained in a long-form profile of Spence written by's Jeffri Chadiha. The piece is well worth the read. In the profile, Spence reflected upon his past drug issues, saying, "I just got caught up with the wrong crowd. Nobody forced me to do anything, but I look back and think, What was 18- and 19-year-old Noah thinking?" An NFL scout who spoke with ESPN believes that so long as Spence can stop from reverting to "18- and 19-year-old Noah," he "can be a very good pro."
Sun, Apr 24, 2016 03:10:00 PM

Eastern Kentucky edge rusher Noah Spence's "tape speaks for itself," said an NFL scout speaking with ESPN.

It most certainly does. The 6-foot-2, 251-pound Spence had 22.5 TFL and 11.5 sacks last season. "If he stays clean," another scout said, "he can be a very good pro." The NFL expected Spence to test better during the process. Most notably, he was expected to run in the mid-4.6s and instead ran a 4.80.
Thu, Apr 21, 2016 10:06:00 PM

NFL Media draft analyst Chad Reuter believes that Eastern Kentucky edge rusher Noah Spence is a candidate to slip in the draft.

We will quibble slightly in terms of semantics. While Reuter included Spence on his list of potential draft sliders, we would tend toward the opinion that Spence's slide has already taken place. There was a brief window of time after the Senior Bowl in which some analysts were mocking him into the top-10. Following the NFL Scouting Combine and some reportedly rocky interviews, though, that steam faded in early March. A late first-round selection or early second-round selection has been the projection ever since. He'll be visiting the Jets on Wednesday.
Tue, Apr 19, 2016 05:11:00 PM

Eastern Kentucky edge rusher Noah Spence will visit the Jets on Wednesday, according to beat writer Manish Mehta.

Visits this close to the actual draft are definitely worth monitoring. Mehta nailed the Sheldon Richardson selection for the Jets a couple of years back, and the team is definitely in need of an edge rusher. Spence does not profile like a No. 1 outside rusher for an NFL club and buzz after the NFL Combine pointed to his interviews going poorly. However, the Senior Bowl was a great week for Spence and he produced great tape at both Ohio State and at the FCS level.
Mon, Apr 18, 2016 08:04:00 AM

An anonymous coach who spoke with ESPN said of Eastern Kentucky edge rusher Noah Spence, "I thought he'd jump off the tape more than he did."

"[Spence]'s obviously talented, but I thought I'd see a guy that just jumped through the screen at me. He didn't," the coach said. Even beyond potential playing concerns, Spence has already had to fight through a slew of off-field questions during this offseason process. The 6-foot-2, 251-pounder hopes he has answered said questions to the satisfaction of interested NFL parties. "I feel like the coaches ask people stuff and wait for them to lie about it. But I mean, there's no way I could lie about anything I've done. Anything I've ever done is already in the open." On Wednesday, he has met with both the Jaguars and Texans since the calendar turned to April. While some project him as a Day 2 pick, we remain high on Spence. Rotoworld's Josh Norris ranks him as the No. 22 prospect in this class.
Sat, Apr 16, 2016 01:11:00 PM

Eastern Kentucky edge rusher Noah Spence visited the Texans on Wednesday, according to Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle.

Wilson adds Spence is visiting the Saints on Thursday and the Redskins on Tuesday. The Texans have edge rushers in Whitney Mercilus and Jadeveon Clowney, however, the latter has dealt with a number of injuries in his young career. Spence could be a mid to late first round pick, but there is some buzz that he could land in the second round despite the lack of edge rushing depth in this class.
Thu, Apr 14, 2016 11:25:00 AM

Eastern Kentucky edge rusher Noah Spence is visiting the Jaguars on Wednesday.

Spence's draft narrative has had its peaks and valleys. His evaluation was at its highest at the Senior Bowl, where he was clearly the top edge rusher in attendance. he also earned praise for his interviews at the event. However, his "stock" took a dip at the NFL Combine when he tested like an average NFL athlete at the position and reports surfaced about poor interviews. All in all, there is a chance Spence is on the board at the top of round two, and the Jaguars are certainly in need of edge help.
Wed, Apr 6, 2016 11:36:00 AM

Eastern Kentucky edge rusher Noah Spence has eight team visits scheduled over the next few weeks.

Spence has had an interesting draft process. He produced a quality Senior Bowl week, and reports were positive regarding his meetings with teams. Then Spence failed to shine at the NFL Combine, which was followed by reports questioning his meetings with teams. The process is till another six weeks long, so even more can happen in that span of time. He will be one of the most debated prospects in this draft. On the field, Josh Norris ranks Spence as a top 25 prospect.
Mon, Mar 21, 2016 11:05:00 AM

The MMQB's Robert Klemko spoke with one NFL evaluator who believes the first-round projections for EKU edge rusher Noah Spence are off base.

"I don’t hear that he’s first-round guy at all," said one evaluator Klemko cited. "I hear second or third round," adding some teams will have him completely off the board. Spence received some top 10 buzz prior to the NFL Combine, however testing like an average athlete has slowed his momentum a bit. We have all seen how much money the NFL is throwing at secondary pass rushers during free agency, and Spence profiles int hat same role. Teams will obviously have to determine if the off-field events are behind Spence.
Source: The MMQB
Mon, Mar 21, 2016 10:47:00 AM

Rivals recruiting director Mike Farrell indicated that he's unsure if Eastern Kentucky edge rusher Noah Spence will be able to crack the first round of the draft.

Farrell noted that had Spence performed more admirably at the NFL Scouting Combine, "he’d still be on the round one radar despite some apparently weak interviews about his past off-field issues. But the freak results I expected from the former five-star never materialized." This has been the general consensus on Spence, who started off the pre-draft season like gangbusters with a strong showing at the Senior Bowl. The 6-foot-2, 251-pounder was even being mocked into the top-10 by some analysts in early February, but that's not the case anymore. Indeed, it's looking more and more like he'll slip to the second round. NFL Media's Chad Reuter sees it that way and projected Spence to the Ravens at pick No. 36 in his most recent four-round mock-up.
Sat, Mar 12, 2016 03:22:00 PM

In his most recent four-round mock draft, NFL Media draft analyst Chad Reuter projected Eastern Kentucky edge rusher Noah Spence to the Ravens at pick No. 36.

After a strong week of Senior Bowl practices in late January, Spence was being viewed as a first-round pick, with possible top-10 potential. The 6-foot-2, 251-pounder's overall performance at the NFL Scouting Combine left something to be desired, though, with several teams reportedly scared off by his interviews in Indianapolis as he attempted to answer questions about his earlier ban from the Big Ten due to multiple failed drug tests. NFL Media reporter Kimberly Jones reported at the time that teams were deeming those interviews as "very shaky." Reuter's mock shows a natural extension of those worries, with Spence sliding into Day 2 on his projection.
Fri, Mar 11, 2016 10:04:00 PM