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 PROFILE   GAME ANALYSIS   PLAYER NEWS   EXTERNAL Raji NEWS   PLAYER STATISTICS
Name: B.J. Raji 
Compares to: Dewayne Robertson (Kentucky/2003/Rd 1/NYJ)
College: Boston College     Number: 90
Height: 6-2   Weight: 337
Position: DT  Pos2:   Class/Draft Year: rSr/2009
40 Low: 5.04
  40 Time: 5.12
   40 High: 5.24

Projected Round: 1   High: 5-12  Low: Mid 1  Stock: 
Rated number 1 out of 156 DT's     10 / 2491 TOTAL
Combine Invite: Yes
Height: 6014
Weight: 337
40 Yrd Dash: 5.12
20 Yrd Dash: 2.93
10 Yrd Dash: 1.69
225 Lb. Bench Reps: 33
Vertical Jump: 32
Broad Jump: 08'07"
20 Yrd Shuttle: 4.69
3-Cone Drill: 7.90


Dates: 03/12/09
Height: 6014
Weight: 337
40 Yrd Dash: 
20 Yrd Dash: 
10 Yrd Dash: 
225 Lb. Bench Reps: 
Vertical Jump: 
Broad Jump: 
20 Yrd Shuttle: 
3-Cone Drill: 

   
 Data Scout Notes: 1st M

Post-Draft Outlook:
BEST PICK: Boston College NT B.J. Raji was a no-brainer for the Packers' top selection when he was available at No. 9 overall, although dynamic wideout Michael Crabtree of Texas Tech had general manager Ted Thompson mulling his enviable options. Addressing glaring needs in the revamped 3-4 defensive front took precedence, and landing Raji was a coup for fortifying the trenches. Raji is a beast at 6-foot-2 and 337 pounds. The Packers haven't possessed such a feared, game-changing nose tackle since Gilbert Brown was digging graves in the backfield for upended opponents during the team's dominant run in the 1990s. Raji's uncanny ability to take on double teams and shed blockers should pay immediate dividends for a defense that ranked 26th against the run, allowing an average of 131.6 yards per game, and generated only 27 sacks last season. A closer look at the Packers' picks: Round 1/9 -- B.J. Raji, DT, 6-2, 337, Boston College...Pound for pound, the Packers might have acquired the best defensive player in the draft. Raji is extraordinarily gifted and athletic for his size. The every-down enforcer solidifies the interior of the defensive line for Green Bay, which had only aging starter Ryan Pickett to anchor the critical nose tackle position in its big switch to a 3-4 alignment up front. Work ethic and yo-yo weight control exhibited by Raji in college are blemishes that can't be brushed aside, however. - by The Sports Xchange
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 Overview

  
Raji made a successful return to the field in 2008 after sitting out the previous season due to academic issues. He re-joined teammate Ron Brace in the middle of the front wall, as they proved to be one of the most feared defensive tackle tandems in college football.

With those two anchored in the middle of the line, they combined for 11 of the team's 35 sacks (31.43 percent) and 27 of the Eagles' 108 tackles behind the line of scrimmage (25.0 percent). Raji led a unit that led the Atlantic Coast Conference in rush defense (91.21 ypg, seventh in the NCAA) and total defense (268.14 ypg, ranked fifth nationally).

At Westwood Regional High School, Raji earned All-State, All-North Jersey and All-County honors as a senior. The three-time starter was a two-time All-Bergen County Scholastic League choice, as he played on both the offensive and defensive lines.

As a senior, Raji recorded 75 tackles, 7.5 sacks and four forced fumbles in 2003. He was selected to play in the 2004 Governor's Bowl, which pits the top high-school seniors in New Jersey vs. their New York counterparts. He also played on Westwood's basketball team as a freshman and sophomore.

Raji enrolled at Boston College in 2004, seeing action in 11 games behind Tim Bulman at right defensive tackle. He collected 13 tackles (6 solos) with 1.5 stops behind the line of scrimmage. Having bulked up to 320 pounds in a rigorous offseason program, he captured the right tackle starting position in 2005, posting 27 tackles (15 solos) with 6.5 stops behind the line of scrimmage, including 1.5 sacks his sophomore campaign.

Raji saw constant double-team blocking in 2006, as he started 12 games at right tackle. He garnered All-Atlantic Coast Conference second-team honors, as he delivered 23 tackles (16 solos) with three sacks and 8.5 stops for losses. Two of his three pass breakups came on third-down plays.

Primed for a banner senior season, Raji had to wait another year for that to occur, as he was ruled academically ineligible to play in 2007. He came back with renewed hunger, going on to register a career-high 42 tackles (22 solos), including a team-high eight sacks and 16.0 stops behind the line of scrimmage. He also became the first Eagle defensive tackle since Mike Ruth in 1985 to lead the team in sacks. He added three pressures and deflected five passes at the line of scrimmage.



 Analysis

  
Positives: Flashes rare burst off the snap for a man his size and can penetrate into the backfield and disrupt the play without necessarily making the tackle. Good strength and mass at the point of attack to create a pile. Good short-area lateral quickness. Experienced. Missed the 2007 season due to academics, but leaves BC with 38 career starts. Locates the ball quickly and works to make the play. At his best lining up at the nose, though he flashes the initial burst off the snap to be effective as the under-tackle in the 4-3 alignment. Strong enough to pull down ballcarriers with just his arms. Arguably the single-most dominant player during the week of practice at the Senior Bowl.

Negatives: Marginal height for the position. Only adequate to shed blocks due to his short arms and lack of sustained quickness. Rare quickness in confined space, but lacks the speed to sustain and struggles to make an impact outside of the guard box. Flashes the burst off the snap for the three-technique (under tackle in the 4-3 alignment), but is only a marginal pass rusher. Relies on his initial burst off the snap and an occasional spin move to pressure. Reliable tackler, but lacks the balance and lateral quickness to break down and make the tackle in space. Most effective when operating as part of a rotation. Maturity is a concern. Has struggled with his weight, playing in 2006 at more than 350 pounds. Was suspended for the first half of the Clemson game in 2006 for throwing a punch at a Central Michigan player. Missed the entire 2007 season due to academics.

Compares To: SHAUN ROGERS, Cleveland -- Rogers is about three inches bigger than Raji, but both have the awesome ability to change the tide of a game on the field and frustrate coaches by their lack of work ethic away from it. Raji had a good senior campaign, but it was not earth-shattering. You have to look at the whole picture here. Is your team going to get a player motivated and hungry to prove his doubters wrong, or a player his former coaching staff had to constantly monitor. That's a lot of money to gamble on someone that can either dominate for you or get a general manager fired.



 Scouting Report

  
GENERAL REPORT: GRADE: 5.84
Body Structure: Raji is a wide-body type with outstanding shoulder and chest width. He has big hips, thick thighs, huge calves and tree-like legs. He lacks good arm length and needs to control his weight (as high as 360), as he does have stamina issues when he plays with added bulk. His frame is fleshy in the midsection and he has natural strength, rather than a well-built weight room physique.

Athletic Ability: Raji has a thick frame with decent initial burst for a player his size. He is agile moving down the line and light on his feet, but lacks the suddenness to explode through the gaps. He demonstrates good knee bend, showing the agility, balance and short-area acceleration to get into the backfield. He has the body control and change of direction agility to make plays down the line. He also has good strength, but needs to be more physical in his play. He did play with a high motor in 2008, something he did not do in the past. GRADE: 6.6

Football Sense: This kid is field smart, but does struggle in the classroom, sitting out the 2007 season due to academic issues. He does show good field smarts, but the coaching staff felt he just did not want to apply himself in the classroom and he paid for it by sitting out a season. He has the ability to quickly learn and retain plays. He understands assignments and is quick to pick up schemes. His feel for the ball is above average and he makes an effort on every play to get to the ball. He is rarely caught out of position due to a mental error. GRADE: 6.3

Character: Raji has finally bought into the program. He comes from a supportive family (both parents are pastors), but his academic problems and lack of work ethic in the past will raise a few red flags. He was suspended for part of a game in 2006 (vs. Clemson) for fighting vs. Central Michigan. The previous coaching staff felt that he was the laziest player on the team, but a year away from the game gave him renewed motivation. Still, you have to wonder if it was to impress the NFL teams or that he finally realized he needs to step it up on and off the field. GRADE: 5.3

Competitiveness: He is a solid competitor who plays with improved aggression, but you would like him to be a little more physical in his play. He can dominate the action in the trenches and never takes plays off. He relies a lot on his quickness and hand usage to finesse blockers and makes every effort to get to the ball, but for a player of his size he should be mauling blockers more often. The staff felt that it needed to motivate him constantly in practices, politely calling him a "game" player. GRADE: 6.0

Work Habits: Raji will never be called a hard worker in the weight room or practices. He is not the type that needs to be pushed to get the best effort out of him, as he is not a self-starter. He is a good field presence who lets his actions speak louder than his words, but not the example you want for being a mentor for the team's younger players. GRADE: 5.0

ATHLETIC REPORT: GRADE: 6.62
Explosion/Pursuit: Raji lacks good timed speed and will have stamina issues late in games, but he has a good burst off the snap shooting the gaps and the low center of gravity, along with incredibly thick legs to maintain his ground at the point of attack. He attacks the gaps with good urgency and flashes the ability to gain advantage on an offensive lineman. His burst off the line allows him to penetrate the gaps almost immediately. GRADE: 7.5

Strength at Point: Raji is sometimes too slow to shed and has shorter than ideal arms, but is nearly impossible to move out at the point of attack, thanks to his wide base, very strong anchor and noticeably improved leverage (that was a problem in the past). He has the power to split and disengage, but will revert to trying to out-finesse the blocker late in games (stamina issues), especially in one-on-one situations. His weight room figures do not always translate to the football field, but he is very effective at using his hands to stab and separate. He will get washed out when he gets too high in his pads and needs to play at a lower pad level to be effective when trying to shed and stack. GRADE: 7.0

Use of Hands: In the past, Raji's lack of arm length would see him struggle to disengage. He now shoots his hands more often, keeping them inside the frame to shock and jolt with much better authority than he showed his first three seasons. He now displays the proper positioning to use his hands in attempts to jolt at the line of scrimmage. When he locks on to a blocker, he has the functional strength to control. Still, he lacks the length to have consistent success defeating reach blocks. GRADE: 6.3

Lateral Pursuit/Effort: For a player of his size and fleshy midsection, Raji shows the quickness and hip snap to reach the edge to make tackles on the corner. He moves effortlessly down the line and when he gets free, is quick to zero in on the quarterback. He locates the ball quickly working through trash and has no problems generating the pursuit needed to make plays on runs between the tackles. GRADE: 6.8

Tackling Ability: Raji might not have a good amount of tackles, but one he collides with a ball carrier, the runner is quickly on the ground. He is not really a good wrap-up tackler (short arms), but uses his body well to generate a strong impact behind his hits. When he stays low in his pads, he generates the power to hit and take down with authority. He shows good hand usage to wrap and the hip roll to jolt on contact. GRADE: 6.5

Run Defense: Even though he does not always utilize his strength, Raji gets good position and body lean to stack and control when he stays at a good pad level. When he gets too high, he struggles with the blocker, especially against one lined up over his head. With his frame, he does a nice job of clogging the rush lanes and is too much of a force for lead blockers to move him out. He has the ability to lock on and either drive the blocker back or simply stand the opponent up. He has the ability to make tackles on the move, but is best when staying at the line or charging into the backfield rather than give long chase. GRADE: 6.9

Pass Rush: Until 2008, Raji showed limited ability as a pass rusher. He is still a work in progress, but is a physical bull rusher who can get to the quarterback in the short area. He lacks the foot speed to generate long pursuit, but once he gets free and gets a bead on the quarterback, he will usually make the play in the backfield. For a player of his size, you'd expect him to be more physical and generate more power to get a strong push off the snap. GRADE: 6.3

Closing on the QB: Raji lacks overall body flexibility and suddenness to close on the quarterback in a hurry, having to rely on his bull rush to disrupt the backfield. It is his balance and short-area burst that gets him into the backfield, where he has some ability to flush out the passer. He has enough short burst to close, but gets locked on quite a bit because he does not always bring his power game. When he is given a free lane, he shows explosion through the gaps to gain penetration. GRADE: 5.4

Instincts/Recognition: Raji has the ability to read and react and is quick to pick up blocking schemes. He has a good feel to flow to the ball and his agility down the line lets him string plays wide. He has the field vision and awareness to react quickly to blocking schemes. GRADE: 6.9

Compares To: SHAUN ROGERS, Cleveland -- Rogers is about three inches bigger than Raji, but both have the awesome ability to change the tide of a game on the field and frustrate coaches by their lack of work ethic away from it. Raji had a good senior campaign, but it was not earth-shattering. You have to look at the whole picture here. Is your team going to get a player motivated and hungry to prove his doubters wrong, or a player his former coaching staff had to constantly monitor. That's a lot of money to gamble on someone that can either dominate for you or get a general manager fired.

OVERALL GRADE: 6.50:
--Report by Dave-Te' Thomas



 Career Notes

  
Raji started 37 of 49 games at Boston College, recording 105 tackles (59 solos) with 12.5 sacks for minus 78 yards, 32.5 stops for losses of 136 yards and four quarterback pressures...Deflected nine passes and caused one fumble...In 2008, he became the first Boston College defensive tackle to lead the team in sacks (eight) since Mike Ruth in 1985...His three sacks vs. North Carolina State in 2008 were the most in a game by an Eagle since Mathias Kiwanuka in 2005 (3.5 vs. North Carolina State).



 2008 Season

  
All-American first-team selection by The NFL Draft Report, earning second-team honors from Rivals.com, third-team accolades from the Associated Press and Scout.com and was an honorable mention by Pro Football Weekly and Sports Illustrated...First-team All-Atlantic Coast Conference pick...The recipient of The Mary M. and William H. Sullivan, Jr. '37 Scholarship started all thirteen games at right defensive tackle, recording a career-high 42 tackles (22 solos)...Led the team with eight sacks for minus 48 yards, 16.0 stops for losses of 79 yards and three quarterback pressures...Finished third on the squad with five pass deflections...Had at least one tackle behind the line of scrimmage in ten contests... Helped the team lead the ACC and rank seventh in the nation by holding the opposition to an average of 91.21 rushing yards per game, as the Eagles also led the conference and placed fifth nationally with an average of 268.14 yards per game in total offense allowed.



 2007 Season

  
Sat out the entire season due to academic reasons...Boston College announced that Raji would redshirt in order to concentrate on his studies. The school declared Raji ineligible to participate earlier this season due to academic reasons. An NCAA committee denied the school's appeal to restore Raji's eligibility. "BJ now has the opportunity to take a negative and turn it into a positive," Coach Jeff Jagodzinski said. "Graduation is the number one goal for BJ and his family, and this will give him the chance to concentrate on his studies. At the same time, he will gain another year of football experience, which will benefit him in the long run."



 2006 Season

  
The All-Atlantic Coast Conference second-team selection started twelve games at right defensive tackle, coming off the bench vs. Clemson...Finished with 23 tackles (16 solos)
That included three sacks for minus 22 yards, 8.5 stops for losses of 35 yards and one QB pressure...Caused a fumble and deflected three passes, including two on third-down plays that forced the opposition to punt.



 2005 Season

  
Raji took over right defensive tackle duties, starting all twelve games...Recorded 27 tackles (15 solos) with 6.5 stops for losses of 20 yards, including 1.5 sacks for minus 8 yards...Also deflected one pass.



 2004 Season

  
Raji appeared in eleven games as a true freshman, working his way into the rotation at right defensive tackle behind Tim Bulmam...Recorded thirteen tackles (6 solos) with 1.5 stops for losses of 2 yards.



 Injury Report

  
2007: Suffered a shoulder contusion during the first day of spring drills (4/01) and missed more than half of camp.

2008: Held out of spring drills after undergoing shoulder surgery (4/08).



 Agility Tests

  
Combine: 5.12 in the 40-yard dash...1.69 10-yard dash...2.93 20-yard dash...4.69 20-yard shuttle...7.90 three-cone drill...32-inch vertical jump...8'7" broad jump...Bench pressed 225 pounds 33 times...32-inch arm length...10 3/8-inch hands.



 High School

  
Attended Westwood Regional (Washington Township, N.J.) High School, playing football for head coach Joe Gambardella...Earned All-State, All-North Jersey and All-County honors as a senior...The three-time starter was a two-time All-Bergen County Scholastic League choice, as he played on both the offensive and defensive lines...As a senior, Raji recorded 75 tackles, 7.5 sacks and four forced fumbles in 2003...Selected to play in the 2004 Governor's Bowl, which pits the top high-school seniors in New Jersey vs. their New York counterparts...Also played on Westwood's basketball team as a freshman and sophomore.



 Personal

  
Enrolled in the College of Arts & Sciences...Very active in his church, playing drums and tutoring children...Oldest of Mamie and Busari Raji Sr.'s three children...Born Busari Raji on 6/11/86...Resides in Washington Township, New Jersey.


 Player Statistics

  

 
 Draft Scout Player News
08/26/14 - NT B.J. Raji has officially been ruled out for the entire 2014 season. The veteran starter and former top-10 draft pick, who re-signed with Green Bay on a one-year deal as a free agent in the offseason, was placed on injured reserve Tuesday as the team trimmed the roster to the mandatory 75 players. Raji suffered a torn biceps in the preseason win over the Oakland Raiders on Friday and is due to undergo surgery in the coming days.
08/24/14 - NT B.J. Raji suffered an injury to his right arm in the first quarter of the Packers' 31-21 win over the Oakland Raiders on Friday night. Head coach Mike McCarthy said after the game that Raji felt "pretty confident" that the injury wouldn't keep him out long. "We'll see what the tests say (Saturday)," McCarthy said. The team had the day off Saturday, so more on Raji's status won't be known until Sunday. Multiple reports Saturday, not confirmed by the team, said Raji suffered a torn biceps that could sideline him for the entire season.
08/24/14 - NT B.J. Raji is expected to miss the entire season after suffering a torn right biceps early in the preseason win over the Oakland Raiders on Friday. Without coming out and saying Raji won't play this season, McCarthy answered "no" when asked Sunday whether the veteran starter is a candidate to be placed on the temporary injured-reserve list that would allow him to play during the second half of the season. Raji, who attended practice Sunday with his right arm in a sling, is due to undergo surgery for the injury in the coming days.
08/05/14 - NT B.J. Raji participated in practice Monday night, two days after he dropped out of the team's Family Night practice at Lambeau Field when he twisted his right ankle. The Packers were off Sunday.
04/02/14 - NT B.J. Raji was re-signed as an unrestricted free agent by the March 14.
 Draft Scout External News
Note: External news links will open in a new browser window. Draft Scout provides this information as extra research on the above player and cannot guarantee links will always work due to newspapers changing publishing links and stories at any time. We will not post any external links that make you to sign up for membership at posting, unless that outlet changes it's service over time, all should be clean, direct news links.

 09.04.22 - Raji not a clear-cut choice
 09.04.21 - Pair personify top of line
 09.04.20 - Raji didn't test positive
 09.04.20 - Hitting it right on nose
 09.04.17 - Raji seems to have overcome some issues
 09.04.17 - Picking apart truth and lies
 09.04.07 - Raji's failed drug test report 'cowardly'
 09.04.03 - BC's Raji failed drug test
 09.04.02 - Raji tested positive at NFL Combine
 09.03.13 - Raji, Brace work out for NFL draft
 09.03.12 - Go Behind the Scenes as Boston College Pro Day
 09.03.05 - Rising draft stock? BC's Raji says
 09.02.22 - Man in the middle
 09.02.18 - Combine Invite=Free Stuff
 09.01.24 - Raji commands attention
 09.01.24 - Determined Raji turning NFL heads
 09.01.22 - Bucs look at drafting defensive tackles
 08.12.30 - Rajiís stock on the rise
 08.12.29 - BC tackle begs Vandy to run ball
 08.12.04 - BC's All-ACC duo livens up defense
 08.11.21 - Prospects brighter for Raji

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