Trey Botts was an undrafted free agent in the 2023 NFL Draft, but found a roster spot with the Baltimore Ravens coming out of the NFL Draft. The Ravens always on the cutting edge of finding defensive linemen, brought in Botts as a camp body to see if he could impress and make the roster in 2023. Unfortunately for Baltimore, and fortunately for the Stars defense, Botts was let go just ahead of the final cuts deadline in August of 2023.
Botts Set to Bring the Pressure in 2024
Defensive Line Coach Brandon Macguire gushed about his 2023 draft class. Selecting three different defensive linemen last season with Truman Jones, Botts, and Jose Ramirez. Botts got his taste of the NFL early, but since has not gotten another call up. The former Colorado State-Pueblo defender has a lot of potential, and could see his stock rise if he performs well in the USFL in 2024.
Botts played with CSU-Pueblo for a total of 43 games spread over six seasons thanks to red-shirting as a freshman, and the 2020 season being cancelled. Up until his final two seasons with the school, Botts’ numbers weren’t impressing anyone. Between the 2018-2019 seasons, Botts played in 20 games, collecting 32 tackles, 3 for a loss, and 1 sack.
He turned everything around in 2021 after losing 2020 to covid 19. This season of study, and preparation seemed to have his game at all new heights. Having weighed 305 pounds the previous two seasons, heading into 2021 Botts dropped over 20 pounds, and looked explosive. This helped him to take over a starting position on defense, and showed just how active up front he could be. Playing in 11 games he managed 55 total tackles, 6.5 for a loss, 2 sacks, and 1 fumble recovery on the year.
What Does Trey Botts Bring to the Table?
Botts settled in as a Redshirt senior in 2022 again playing at 281 pounds. This time he had an even better season statistically. He would put up a career high in tackles with 66, tackles for a loss with 16, and sacks with 5.5. Including a game in which he collected 15 tackles. Botts has the perfect size to play defensive end in a 3-4, or he can also be a DT/DE in a 4-3 shifting between the two roles depending on the situation, these factors and his senior season put him on the NFL map.
Coming out of his pro-day he had created a buzz around him. His 78 inch wingspan, and 30 reps on the bench press truly caught attention of many scouts. While his numbers across the board were solid, but not spectacular, his strength, and relative agility for a defensive tackle make him a candidate to play defensive end situationally in a 4-3. He could actually end up being the 1 for 1 replacement of Ralph Holley should he stay in the CFL with the defending Grey Cup Champions.
How Does Trey Botts Fit with Philly?
This past off-season the Stars lost DT LaBryan Ray the top interior pass rusher on the team to the Carolina Panthers. Ray not only was signed, he made the active roster for the Panthers and likely won’t be returning to the USFL for the 2024 season, unless the Panthers decide to randomly release him. This loss, along with the release of Chris Nelson, and potential loss of Ralph Holley who signed with the Toronto Argonauts, have the Stars hurting for defensive line help. Signing Trey Botts for the 2024 season is a win for the team who has begun to get dangerously low on talent and depth up front.
Hopefully the additions of Botts, and Auzoyah Alufohai will prompt Brad Miller and company to make the switch I have been begging for since last season, and move to a 3-4 front. With the pass rushers they have at defensive end, and the talent they have up front they could easily make the switch, and potentially even see an increase in pressure created due to the confusion it would cause allowing men like Adam Rodriguez, and Ali Fayad to move around and rush from different places. Disguising who the fifth rusher is will only help as well. Merger or not The Stars must return to their winning ways in 2024, before they lose even more talent to other teams and leagues.
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