Originally Posted by BornOrange
Most advocates of the 3-4 defense seem to feel that high draft picks are wasted on D-linemen. Most D-linemen taken early in the draft are picked because of their ability to rush the QB and rely more on speed, and guys more suited for the 3-4 are usually available in later rounds. Also, 3-4 advocates seem to prefer veterans to rookies because of the strength requirements of the position.
The higher picks on a 3-4 defense tend to be corners (especially first round picks) and then linebackers. Safeties and D-linemen are picked later in the draft.
Excellect analysis, and that's why the 3-4 is know to be "cap friendly". The
down lineman in the 3-4 are "tackle types" who tie up OL and stop rushing plays. The premium paid in the draft (and FA for vets), for lineman
tends to be the ones who can rush the QB, a role done primarily by OLBs in the 3-4. And the OLB in the 3-4 are often downlineman in college usually too small to be selected by the 4-3 teams to be play the D line, so the can often be had a discount.