YaYa Diaby Complete NFL Draft Profile (Louisville EDGE Offers Big Upside With Obvious Flaws)
Louisville defensive lineman YaYa Diaby is eligible for the 2023 NFL Draft after finishing his senior season in 2022. A late-bloomer as a junior college transfer, Diaby may not be a top prospect this season but he's certainly a safe bet to have his name called during this year's draft.
Here's everything you need to know about YaYa Diaby heading into the 2023 NFL Draft.
YaYa Diaby Draft Stock & Mock Draft Projections
Pro Football Network
San Francisco 49ers
Mock draft sources accurate as of 4/12: Walter Football, Sporting News, Draft Tek, Pro Football Network, ESPN.
Projected Draft Round: Round 4 (3), Round 3 (1), Round 7 (1)
Projected Team: Colts (1), Eagles (1), 49ers (1) Vikings (1), Jaguars (1)
YaYa Diaby Scouting Report
A junior college transfer in 2020, YaYa Diaby didn't start to make a real impact for Louisville until 2021, when he played in 12 games and racked up what ended up being career-high marks in both solo (24) and total (39) tackles. He really burst onto the scene in 2022, however, recording 14.0 TFLs and 9.0 sacks.
He's not a massive lineman, measuring in at 6-foot-3 and 263 pounds, but he plays with the strength of a larger man. Highlighted strengths in his game include strong hands and an ability to knock blockers off balance, but he may be too reliant on that power, which might not translate against the stiffer competition he'll face at the NFL level.
Knocks on his game include an incredibly limited array of moves as a pass rusher, making him a bit of a liability on the edge on passing downs.
Don't expect to see Diaby playing without his hand in the dirt on the edge, and he projects as a likely 5-tech or base 4-3 defensive end with the potential to shift inside as an interior rusher on passing downs.
YaYa Diaby NFL Draft Prediction
Diaby is the kind of prospect NFL scouts and coaches can become enamored with. Raw skills and physical talent give him huge upside, and all it takes is one coaching staff to think they have what it takes to fix those pass-rushing deficiencies and unlock that ceiling.
Projecting a player like Diaby in the draft can also be tough because he's a fit on just about any team. By Round 3 and Round 4 teams aren't fully focused on need when they draft, and a team who doesn't need a player at Diaby's position right now is still a good fit because he could get a season or two of development before competing for a starting spot.
The San Francisco 49ers have a long history of bringing in plus athletes in the box on defense, and they've already hosted Diaby for a pre-draft visit. Is there a chance he slides to their late fifth-round picks? Maybe, but I don't think they'll risk it. With three compensatory picks at the end of the third round (99, 101 and 102 overall), look for San Francisco to roll the dice on Diaby's upside.
Prediction: San Francisco 49ers (Round 3, 102 overall)
Check out more NFL Draft content from The Duel:
YaYa Diaby NFL Combine Results
YaYa Diaby Louisville Stats
Tackles for Loss