3 Texas football freshmen ready to breakout in fall camp

Steve Sarkisian, Texas Football Mandatory Credit: Aaron E. Martinez-USA TODAY NETWORK
Steve Sarkisian, Texas Football Mandatory Credit: Aaron E. Martinez-USA TODAY NETWORK /
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Justice Finkley, EDGE

The position group that might have the most question marks heading into fall camp for the Longhorns lies at edge rusher. Texas struggled to find an answer coming off the edge throughout last season. And Texas didn’t really add much to the roster this offseason among proven edge rushers that will change their fortunes in the pass rush right away this fall.

What Texas did add along the defensive front this offseason was a highly touted group of linemen/linebackers by way of the 2022 signing class. And one of the most highly-rated true freshmen that joined the Longhorns by way of the 2022 class that could make an impact this fall is the former four-star Hewitt-Trussville edge rusher Justice Finkley.

This 6-foot-2 and 245-pound Alabama native is likely going to get his shot to make an early impact for the Texas defense this fall. Texas is just too thin at edge rusher for Finkley not to get his shot to make an impact on this pass rush at some point this season.

The main task at hand for Finkley and the Texas defensive staff in fall camp will be finding the right fit for him in this front seven. Finkley doesn’t have the bulk to him at the moment that would be needed for him to legitimately compete as a Power Five defensive end.

At 245 pounds, Finkley will likely be best fit for taking snaps at the buck or jack edge rusher position. Finkley has good lower body strength and has a good arsenal of moves to get underneath or around opposing blockers when rushing the passer.

That low center of gravity and strength off the line of scrimmage, regardless of whether he lines up in the three-tech or standing up, also will benefit Finkley defending the run. He can get off blocks without too much trouble and showed the special ability to find the ball on film in high school.

It’s clear that Finkley’s football IQ is high. And he’s got the physical frame that will allow him to effectively compete on defense right away this season. The last step for Finkley to really prove he’s ready to breakout in fall camp will be showing the right scheme fit at either the jack or buck spot.