Draft 2022 – Pick #6: Daniel Hardy, DE, Montana State

Player Bio
Hardy spent the first year of his collegiate career at the College of the Siskiyous (66 tackles, nine sacks) before transferring to Montana State. He played in 11 games as a reserve in 2018 (five tackles) before starting four of 15 games for the Bobcats the following season (18 tackles, 5.5 for loss with 1.5 sacks). The school did not play in 2020 due to COVID-19 concerns but had an excellent 2021 campaign, led by Hardy and All-American Troy Andersen. Hardy was a first-team All-Big Sky Conference selection, ranked second in the FCS with 24.5 tackles for loss and tied for second nationally with 16.5 sacks among his 77 total stops. He also broke up three passes and forced two fumbles in 15 starts. — by Chad Reuter

By Lance Zierlein
NFL Analyst

With only one year as a full-time starter at Montana State and a lack of NFL size, Hardy faces longer odds to hear his name called on Day 3 of the draft. However, his disruptive production, premium testing numbers and explosive rush potential are enough to garner attention. He needs more size and technique work but has special teams ability that will help him compete for a roster or practice squad spot as a 3-4 rush linebacker.

  • Outstanding tester with a 4.64 40-yard dash and 40-inch vertical leap at pro day.
  • Sticks tight ends with early hands to separate at point of attack.
  • Rushes with lowered pads and sudden change of direction.
  • Winning get-off and acceleration to create panic in tackles.
  • Explosive burst to close and finish the play.
  • Can be a demon on kick coverage.
  • Only one season as a full-time starter at Montana State.
  • Lacks desired size and strength at point of attack.
  • Was overwhelmed by bigger blockers at times.
  • Has trouble pushing back against angle blocks.
  • Lacks the power to knock protection off-balance.

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