He isn't the most heralded defensive line prospect at North Carolina State, but tackle John McCargo, often overshadowed by the Wolfpack's heralded end tandem of Mario Williams and Manny Lawson, isn't quite an unknown, either, to NFL scouts.
McCargo's ascent up draft boards continued this week with a strong performance at the school's pro day workouts, and his audition certainly enhanced the chances that North Carolina State will have three defensive linemen selected in the first round next month. Williams, of course, is a sure bet, an edge player and upfield rusher regarded by many scouts as the premier defensive player in the draft. Lawson is also a pass-rush threat, an outside defender with great explosiveness and closing speed who might best project to linebacker in a 3-4 front.
But the hard-working McCargo, who has fully recovered from a stress fracture in his left foot that sidelined him for five games in 2005, is definitely on the rise. Several scouts now list him as the third-best prospect at tackle, behind only Haloti Ngata of Oregon and Florida State's Brodrick Bunkley. And unlike those two, McCargo is more a one-gap player, capable of compressing the pocket from the inside.