Redskins take DT Matt Ioannidis in 5th Round

The Washington Redskins selected DL Matt Ioannidis [eye-an-NYE-dis]of Temple in the fifth round, the 152nd pick overall. Despite most mock drafts showing the Skins addressing the defensive line early and often, this is the first pick along the defensive line by the Skins in the 2016 NFL Draft.

Washington traded their fourth round pick in the NFL Draft — 120th overall — to the New Orleans Saints for their fifth round pick — 152nd overall — and the Saints’ fifth round pick in 2017, as well.

The Skins now have two 5th rounders (152 & 158), a 6th (187) and two 7th (232 & 242) round picks.

Ioannidis is a 6’3″ and 300-pound bruiser. He was a 2014 second-team All-American Athletic Conference pick (11 tackles for loss, 3.5 sacks) and 2015 first-team All-Conference pick in 2015 (11.5 tackles for loss, 3.5 sacks, five pass breakups).

Strange as it may seem, I had this kid on my radar because I thought he would be a solid late round pick for the Skins. According to Mike Mayock of NFL.com, Ioannidis is a natural nose tackle or five technique, which is important for Washington because right now the team’s nose tackle is 32-year-old Kedric Golston.

Ioannidis is built well with a minimal amount of body fat and when he plants himself in the field, he is extremely difficult to move, even against many double teams he faced in college. He has good reaction time off the snap, but he’s not a quick twitch player, so although he is very strong, he’s definitely not quick. [Like most nose tackles.] He has a powerful base and is rarely off his feet, making it difficult to run into his gap. He plays hard, something you can see on screen plays, which he runs down with considerable ferocity. As long as the Skins use him for his power and not for his quickness, of which there is little, they should be fine with Ioannidis.

Ioannidis is a block-eating two-gapper who will play strong against the run, but provide little more than a decent pass rush. He should be able to start in Washington’s 3-4 defense and play in the interior of the line when the Skins move to a 4-3 defense, which happens frequently.