Draft King NFL Mock Draft exclusive insight decades of experience insider pro football college prospects

Jer'Zhan Newton, Defensive Lineman, University of Illinois
January 13, 2024
Draft King NFL Prospect Profile


In the fierce landscape of college football, certain players stand out as not just promising prospects, but as potential game-changers at the professional level. University of Illinois defensive lineman Jer'Zhan "Johnny" Newton is one such player whose skills and accomplishments have positioned him as a formidable force ready to make his mark in the NFL.

Hailing from Chicago, Illinois, Newton's journey from high school standout to a key figure in the University of Illinois defense has been marked by consistent improvement. His emergence as a dominant force along the defensive line has garnered attention, with NFL scouts closely monitoring his progress.


At the core of Newton's appeal as an NFL prospect is his exceptional ability to make tackles. His technique, power, and precision in tackling contribute to his impact on the defensive front.

In the 2023 college football season, Newton recorded an impressive number of solo tackles and tackles for loss, showcasing his ability to disrupt opposing offenses and make plays behind the line of scrimmage.

Newton's prowess as a pass rusher is a defining trait that sets him apart. His combination of speed, agility, and strength makes him a relentless force off the line of scrimmage.

In the 2023 season, Newton consistently pressured quarterbacks, tallying a notable number of sacks and quarterback hurries. This pass rush ability makes him a valuable asset for any NFL team in need of disrupting opposing passing games.

Effective run defense is a hallmark of an elite defensive lineman, and Newton excels in this aspect. His ability to shed blocks, clog running lanes, and make tackles against ball carriers highlights his well-rounded skill set.

Newton's impact against the run is reflected in his impressive number of tackles against rushing plays, making him a versatile player capable of contributing in various defensive situations.

Newton's versatility along the defensive line adds a valuable dimension to his NFL prospects. Whether lining up as a defensive end or tackle, he has showcased the ability to adapt to different defensive schemes.

His versatility enables defensive coordinators to deploy him strategically, exploiting matchups and maximizing his disruptive potential.


Standing tall with a powerful build, Newton possesses the physical attributes highly coveted by NFL teams. His combination of size, strength, and agility makes him a formidable force in the trenches. Newton's physicality, coupled with his work ethic and commitment to conditioning, positions him as a durable and impactful player at the professional level.

Beyond the stats, Newton's work ethic and leadership qualities have garnered praise from coaches and teammates. His commitment to continuous improvement, on-field discipline, and the ability to rally his team make him not just a skilled athlete but a prospect with the intangibles necessary for success in the professional ranks.

As NFL teams evaluate potential draft picks, Newton emerges as a player with the tools to make an immediate impact. His impressive stats, diverse skill set, and adaptability on the field make him a valuable prospect for teams in need of a dominant force along the defensive line. Newton's potential to disrupt both the run and passing game positions him as a player poised for success at the highest level.


2024 Draft King NFL Mock Draft

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