The change came in Taco Charlton’s junior season at Michigan.
Enter Don Brown as the Wolverines’ defensive coordinator. He could see the highly talented defensive end he had in Charlton, and he wanted to see more of him on the field.
‘I was able to do a lot more things than I have in the past’
As Charlton’s playing time increased, so did his production. Now, he ranks among the better prospects at his position entering this year’s NFL Draft.
“Definitely, the fact that Coach Brown, coming in and putting me at a place where I can just rush the passer and use my ability, and, secondly, just more opportunity from the fact that I played a lot more this year than I have in the past,” Charlton told Alex Marvez and Phil Savage on Late Hits. “So I was able to do a lot more things than I have in the past, also. My junior season was pretty good, production-wise, for the per-snaps I had. I had a good production per snap, but when Coach Brown came in, he gave me more snaps than I was able to do on a larger scale.”
Charlton has been trying to enhance his game by studying NFL pass-rushers such as Arizona’s Chandler Jones and Detroit’s Ziggy Ansah. He also has made a point of watching how the Kansas City Chiefs’ pass-rushers use their hands.
‘To me, pass rush is a form of art work’
“To me, pass rush is a form of art work,” Charlton said. “The way I go around things and the way I watch film, I just see how I can mold whatever they do with my game and see how I’ll perform better.”
Some NFL teams have talked with the 6-foot-6, 277-pound Charlton about switching to outside linebacker.
‘A couple of teams do think I’m able and athletic enough to play the outside-linebacker role’
“A couple of teams do think I’m able and athletic enough to play the outside-linebacker role, so I’ve been worked out at that a couple of times and done well,” he said. “It’s a natural habit, just being able to move and do things like that. I’m a former basketball player, so moving in space isn’t a problem for me.”
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