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2014 Offensive Guard Rankings

April 13, 2014

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Offensive Guard

Prototype in the NFL: Marshal Yanda

Best In Class

Best Feet: Trai Turner                                        Best Jab: Brandon Thomas

Best Run Blocker: Gabe Jackson                    Best 2nd level Blocker: Zach Martin

Best Pass Blocker: Zach Martin                      Best Mean Streak: Brandon Linder

Best Pancake Blocker: Gabe Jackson           Best Technician: Zach Martin

1. Zach Martin Notre Dame 6’4 308 Sr.

Comparison: A shorter Luke Joeckel

Combine: The Combine to me proved what I’d been saying all along: he’s an OG not an OT. He measured in sub 6’5 (6’4 308) and measured in well below ’34 arms (32 7/8). He had a below average bench (23) a good broad (8’10) and average quickness drills (4.59 shuttle and 7.65 3 cone). He has elite game film but the Combine performance was that of a mid to late round guy.

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Arms

Hands

40

Reps

Vert

Broad

Shuttle

3 Cone

6040

308

32.88

9.5

 

23

 

810

4.59

7.65

Strengths: Elite experience (52 career starts). He’s a very smart player that plays angles well and understands the play’s concept. You can see that on how different he blocks depending on whether it’s an inside/outside run or a pass. He can make good players completely invisible (Ex: Trent Murphy led the nation in sacks in 2013 but was invisible vs. Martin, Darius Hamilton of Rutgers made plays when not matched up with Martin but was invisible when facing him in 2013). He is one of the smoothest OL I’ve ever graded. I’ve yet to find a bad tape of him which shows me that he is consistent, he’s been good for a long time and he has underrated athleticism.

Weaknesses: He isn’t an elite athlete, though he does have good lateral quickness ala Luke Joeckel. He lacks elite arm length or height. Most teams prefer a 6’6 guy with ’34 arms yet he’s more of a 6’4 guy with ’32 arms. I’m not 100% sure he’ll even be an OT when all is said and done. He pancakes people and has good strength but he isn’t your typical drive blocker and more erases guys than drives them 10 yards down the field.

Overall: I don’t know if he has the length or athleticism to be a LT but I do know that whether it’s at LT, RT, or OG he WILL be an elite OL in the NFL and a Pro Bowler. That was what I said about him late in the 2013 season. The Combine showed me that he will have to be an OG not an OT as he’s barely 6’4 (6040), he has sub ’33 arms (32.88), his quickness numbers were mediocre and he didn’t run the 40 which makes me assume it wasn’t going to be good. Martin is the guard version of Luke Joeckel as he’s smooth and effortless in all of his games. He’s rather boring to watch as he just shuts down the player in front of him and erases him on every play. He isn’t a powerful guy and isn’t an elite athlete but he ALWAYS gets the job done. I think he might be able to play LT and he likely could play RT but both would be as an average to above average starter. If a GM drafts him and immediately puts him at OG he will become a Pro Bowl guard. I guarantee it. He’s inferior to Jonathan Cooper, my top rated guard in 2013, but superior to David DeCastro, my top rated guard in 2012, and is one of the better guards I’ve ever evaluated. Top 20 as my #1 OG in the 2014 NFL Draft 3/1/14.

  1. Xavier Su’a-filo UCLA 6’4 1/8 307 Jr.

Combine: He impressed me in a lot of ways. First he measured 6’4 1/8 307 which was perfect size for an OG. Second he dominated a few drills with an impressive 40 (5.04), a dominant shuttle (4.44-3rd best among 50 OL) and a good 3 cone. Finally he showed well in all of the drills and his 40 was one of the smoother ones by any OL. His cone drill was one of the best. Quick but a bit out of control in hip drill. Good in mirror drill.

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40

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3 Cone

6041

307

33.38

9.38

5.04

25

25

806

4.44

7.60

Strengths: 1st Team Pac-12 in 2013. Eagle Scout in HS. He has split time between LG and LT due to injuries in 2013. He clearly is an OG at the next level but it’s impressed me seeing his versatility as he has the quickness to be a LT in college at least. He’s an aggressive player, far more aggressive than the other three top guards (Martin, Yankey, Jackson). He has the versatility to start at OG and move to OT in a pinch if there are injuries on game day.

Weaknesses: He is an older prospect as he went on a 2 year mission trip. He is experienced but doesn’t have +40 starts on his resume.

Overall: In the 2013 Virginia Tech game (bowl game) he played LT due to injuries, false start, he was dominant throughout and showed great aggression to go with an elite frame. He possibly could make a good RT but he for sure will be a top level OG and I think he’s rounding into a 1st round OG 1/24/14. Since I wrote that I’ve become even more impressed by Xavier as he was by far the best OG at the Combine and, even more so than Zach Martin, he seems to be the most likely candidate to be able to play both OG and OT in the NFL due to his length (33.38 arms). Late in the 2013 season I had Su’a-Filo as the #3 or #4 OG prospect behind Martin, Yankey and sometimes even Jackson yet the more I watch him the more I think he has Pro Bowl potential. He has a big frame, great strength, is aggressive, physical and abnormally quick. His quickness drills at the Combine cemented his ascension in my eyes as he really has no holes in his game (reason why the Weakness section for him is so short). It took me awhile to realize it but Xavier is an elite player and would be the #1 OG in most years. Late 1st round as my #2 OG 3/1/14.

3. David Yankey Stanford 6’5 5/8 315 Sr.

Comparison: David DeCastro

Combine: He was slow in cone drill. Below average in mirror drill. He had ’34 arms and a solid vertical (28 ½) and broad (8’7) but that was it as this Combine cost Yankey a lot of money. It started with a horrific 40 (5.48-3rd worst among 50 OL) and continued with the bench (22-5th worst), the shuttle (4.86-4th worst) and the 3 cone (7.81-17th worst). There should no longer be any talk of Yankey as a potential 1st rounder.

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315

34

9.5

5.48

22

28.5

807

4.86

7.81

Strengths: He played LT in 2012 and LG in 2013 with both ending in All-American honors. Some think he can play RT but most have him at OG. 1st Team Pac-12 in 2012 and 2013. 1st Team All-American in 2012 and 2013. 39 career starts. In the 2013 Arizona St. game he shut down DT Will Sutton and once again looked like a top guard prospect with an extremely efficient day. He’s very consistent and is mature and smart in how he plays the game.

Weaknesses: He had a terrible Combine with an atrocious 40, poor quickness drills (shuttle/3 cone) and a poor showing on the bench press (22 reps). Some of these issues can be seen on film as he is smooth but isn’t explosive, powerful or extremely quick. He had elite film but he also had NFL prospects around him (his LT, C, RG and RT all are NFL caliber) and it surely helped him. Stanford has been pumping OL prospects out pretty consistently the past 5 years yet none of them have become dominant. It’s not a huge deal, yet, but is something to keep in mind.

Overall: Yankey at one time was considered a late 1st round pick yet after his horrible Combine, and due to the elite depth at the OG position, I just don’t see that happening anymore. Nonetheless he still is an impressive prospect due to his resume, consistency and game film. Barrett Jones did it last year so it’s taken some of the charm off it but he’s the only other person to be an All-American in different positions in back to back years like Yankey was in 2012-2013. He started at LT in 2012 and was very impressive there and then moved inside to LG in 2013, to make way for future 1st rounder Andrus Peat, and was even more dominant at that spot. Yankey battled in practice against NFL caliber front seven players like Trent Murphy, Ben Gardner, Shayne Skov and others so he’s battle tested. He also faced 2x Pac-12 DPOY Will Sutton on numerous occasions and regularly got the better of the matchup. Yankey could struggle with the dominant athletes in the NFL as his foot quickness and overall athleticism leave much to be desired yet in the end I expect him to be an above average starter. He no longer looks like a future Pro Bowler but as a good starting OG for the next 10 years he should make some team very happy. 2nd Round as my #3 OG 3/1/14.

4. Gabe Jackson Mississippi State 6’3 ¼ 336 Sr.

Comparison: Chance Warmack

Combine: I knew he’d have a bad 40 but I didn’t think it’d be this bad (5.51). The sole respite is that his 1.78 10 yd was okay. He did 30 reps, had surprising explosiveness with a ’29 vertical and 9’0 broad-both above average yet was atrocious in the 3 cone (8.25-2nd worst out of 50 OL). It was a mixed bag but he was athletic enough for me to not be concerned since his MO is as a mauling OG. Slow in cone drills. Poor in hip drill.

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40

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6032

336

33.75

10

5.51

30

29

900

4.78

8.25

Strengths: 52 consecutive starts at LG. Son of a HS coach. 1st Team SEC in 2012. 1st team SEC in 2013. He is one of the 2-3 strongest players in this draft as I’ve yet to see a DL hold the POA against him. He will be a dominant run blocker and could really open holes for a run game. He has elite thickness for an OG and will be great at anchoring vs. big 3-4 NT types. He dominated SEC DL for two straight seasons. He is almost exactly the same in style and grade as Chance Warmack was in 2013 with Warmack going in the Top 10 of that draft.

Weaknesses: He isn’t laterally quick. He will not be able to pull in the NFL as his 40 (5.51) is just too slow to get on a LB. He will struggle at times against quicker DTs. He isn’t scheme diverse as he has to go to a man on man scheme and needs to go to a run oriented team.

Overall: Last year I went on a rampage AGAINST drafted Chance Warmack in the 1st round and Gabe Jackson was one of my key arguments. In my opinion they had almost the exact same level of film in 2012 (both 1st Team SEC) yet Warmack was considered a Top 10 pick and Jackson was considered a mid 2nd rounder. It was due to the absurd Alabama bias that is prevalent throughout the scouting community and was proven when Warmack had a quiet, mediocre rookie season-hardly what your looking for from a Top 10 pick. One year later I’m seeing the same thing as Jackson had another great season in the SEC and then had Combine numbers eerily similar to Warmack’s numbers last year. To me they are the same player as they both are elite run blockers, with great thickness throughout their body, that will improve a run game and be an asset when battling the 3-4 NT types like Phil Taylor or Vince Wilfork. They both also will be a detriment in the passing game due to their lack of lateral quickness and will need to be protected against certain players-JJ Watt’s dominance vs. Warmack last year comes to mind. I like Jackson as he isn’t overrated like Warmack was and I think the team that drafts him will get a very good player that can start the next 10 years at OG for them. Mid 2nd round as my #4 OG 4/13/14.

5. Trai Turner LSU 6’2 5/8 306 Soph

Combine: He measured in sub 6’3 (6’2 5/8) and had only 9 ½ hands but otherwise impressed with ’34 arms, an elite 40 (4.93) an elite 10 yd split (1.72) and average bench (25) and vertical (27 ½). He’s an athlete who could have been an early 2nd rounder if he had gone back to school-big time sleeper. He tweaked a groin and didn’t do the position drills. Out of control and tight but also quick in hip drill.

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6025

310

34

9.5

4.93

25

27.5

 

 

 

Strengths: 3rd team SEC in 2013. He’s a precocious talent that I noticed in 2012 as a redshirt freshman. He’s a strong, powerful run blocker that as a 19 year old was big enough to handle SEC DL. In 2013 he improved and was the best OL for LSU. He had an elite 40 time (4.93-1st among OGs and 3rd among the 50 OL) to go along with elite arm length (’34). In 2012 when I scouted him I saw him as a future 1st round OG.         

Weaknesses: Only 20 career starts. He should not have left early as this is one of the deepest and best OG classes I’ve ever graded and I honestly can’t remember another guard leaving after their redshirt sophomore season. It screams of immaturity and a lack of willingness to put in the time. He improved in 2013 over his impressive 2012 season but he didn’t improve as much as I expected.

Overall: At no time in his 2 years did I see a 1st round caliber OG but I always assumed he would eventually become one due to his precocious freshman year in 2012. Due to this he puts scouts in a tough spot as teams will either draft him according to his game film (3rd-4th round) and possibly risk missing out on an elite OG or draft him according to his potential (late 1st) and possibly risk overdrafting him. It’s similar to the issue caused last year when teammate Bennie Logan (DT, drafted 2nd round) left early. He wasn’t ready for the NFL and didn’t have a great final season but everyone who saw him thought he’d eventually develop into a 1st round player so he was taken in the 2nd by the Eagles on mainly potential. It appears to be working out for the Eagles and I think it will work out for whomever chooses Turner too. He’s a strong, powerful in line blocker with elite arm length and movement skills. He lost weight for the Combine (310 lbs) which allowed him to run his elite 40 time (4.93) yet I expect him to play at more of a 320-330 lb range with still very good speed (5.05-5.10). He should have come back for his junior year and then declared but it is what it is and even with this recent example of his lack of maturity I still can’t give him anything worse than a late 2nd round grade as he looks like a future Pro Bowler to me. An elite player who will need some time to develop but who has Pro Bowl potential. Late 2nd round as my #5 OG 3/9/14.

6. Brandon Thomas Clemson 6’3 ¼ 317 Sr.

Senior Bowl: Day 3: Very good vs. Kareem Martin for no rush, good job keeping edge vs. Trent Murphy to guide him very wide around QB. He played both OG and OT and looked solid at OT, though the pass rushers at the event were hardly elite.

Combine: At 6’3 ¼ 317 he has guard size but with 34 ¾ arms and a 5.09 40 he has OT qualities as well. I continue to say he’s an OG though as his 10 yd split (1.78) was mediocre and his shuttle and 3 cone were flat out bad. Very bad in hip drill.

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40

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6032

317

34.75

10.5

5.09

35

29

802

4.83

8.13

Strengths: 1st team ACC in 2012. He has elite arm length for an OT let alone an OG. He has elite strength both on film and in the weight room (35 reps of 225 lbs).

Weaknesses: He has poor lateral quickness and can be exposed by athletic players. A good example of this is in the 2012 South Carolina game where he went against Jadeveon Clowney and gave up 4.5 sacks to him. His elite arm length will be largely neutralized at OG. He lacks lateral quickness and can’t bend very well at all which makes his movements very slow and robotic. He tore his ACL during pre-draft individual workouts and his stock could be in free fall as he likely will miss his entire rookie season.

Overall: Brandon Thomas is setting himself up to be the tragedy story of the 2014 NFL Draft. He had a good Senior Bowl and a great Combine with their being some legit buzz on him that he could be a mid to late 2nd round pick. Unfortunately all of that talk has stopped completely now that he’s torn his ACL in a pre-draft workout for a NFL team. It’s sad as it will likely cost the kid millions but there’s no reason to take a guy at his pre-injury draft slot now that he likely will miss his entire rookie season. That’s ¼ of his rookie contract down the drain AND means that in year two he’ll be recovering from an ACL injury and possibly not 100%. Pre-injury I liked Thomas as an OG not an OT and had an early 3rd round grade on him but post-injury he drops to a late 3rd round as my #6 OG 4/13/14.

7. Cyril Richardson Baylor 6’4 ¾ 329 Sr.

Comparison: Max Jean-Gilles

Senior Bowl: Day 1: He was dominated by Aaron Donald all day. Day 3: Beat by Ra’Shede Hageman on 7×7 drill, beat by DaQuan Jones badly off snap for quick loss, killed by Donald-fastest loss of the week, good anchoring vs. Will Clarke for no rush, beat by Shamar Stephen as he lunged and gave him the edge-not a great athlete,

Combine: He surprised me with 34 5/8 arms but otherwise measured out as the fat slob he looks like with a poor 40 (5.36), 10 yd split (1.82), vert (25 ½), broad (7’7-worst of 50 OL) and shuttle (4.83-7th worst). His 3 cone (7.70) and bench (25 reps) were average. Even as a phone booth guy he struggled. His 40 had a bad time but it actually looked solid. Poor in hip drill.

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40

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6046

329

34.63

9.5

5.36

25

25.5

707

4.83

7.70

Strengths: 2x Big 12 Offensive Lineman of the Year. 1st Team All-American in 2013. He’s a big, physical guard who is best in a run oriented offense that lets him play “in a phone booth.” When his motor is revved up he can dominate defensive lineman and create huge holes in the running game.

Weaknesses: In 2012 I scouted him and considered him a borderline draftable player due to a lack of effort, poor quickness and a general lack of intelligence (I scouted 3 games of his in 2012 and all 3 games had him doing something stupid). In 2013 I scouted him and he was a completely different player with more aggressiveness and athleticism than the previous year. This inconsistency worries me as does the fact that you too often can see him coast through games. He is far too comfortable not blocking anyone on a given play if a defensive player doesn’t engage him. He is a poor athlete and his body is very sloppy. Due to these things he likely will have a shorter career and it’s unlikely that he will be in the NFL for more than 4-6 years, and that’s if he’s even successful to begin with.

Overall: Richardson is a player that will be drafted much higher than my ranking I give to him because I have serious issues with him that others seem content to ignore. Anyone who watches one game of his will immediately see his strengths (run blocking) and weaknesses (quickness, athleticism, pass blocking) but his lack of a motor and his subsequent inconsistent play makes me want no part of him. In the right system he could become a road grading run blocker and possibly even develop into a Pro Bowler. I doubt this best case scenario ever happens though because his work ethic is poor, his strength for a guy his size is poor (only 25 reps for a supposed power player?), his lateral quickness is poor and he played in a system that was very different from any NFL system he will be going to. To me the risks outweigh the reward until the late 3rd round though I suspect he’ll be gone long before that. Late 3rd round boom/bust type as my #7 OG 3/1/14.                

8. Brandon Linder Miami 6’5 5/8 311 Sr.

Comparison: Clint Boling

Combine: He continues to make the case he might be an OT not an OG with 34 ½ arms. He had a below average 40 (5.35) and 10 yd split (1.83) didn’t help. Average in hip drill.

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40

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6055

311

34.5

10.25

5.35

30

26.5

804

 

 

Strengths: Ranked #145 in ESPN 2010 HS Class. Starting RT in 2013. 2nd team ACC in 2013. Moves to RG when Seantrel Henderson comes in the game showing impressive versatility. In the 2013 Louisville game (bowl game) and the FSU game he impressed me as he went up against NFL caliber DL in both games and never lost a matchup. I also love his versatility as he has the length to stay at RT in the pros or could move inside to OG as he’s comfortable playing both. He’s very aggressive and has a mean streak that many NFL OL coaches love. He could easily become a team’s “enforcer” in the Kevin Gogan type role.

Weaknesses: He’s a mediocre athlete and, while he has the height and arm length for OT, he likely won’t be able to play OT in the NFL. Due to the constant switching between RG and RT he isn’t as experienced at either spot as a full time player would be. He’s sometimes too aggressive and has had dumb penalties called on him before. He doesn’t have great strength and isn’t really a road grader. He also isn’t a great athlete and sometimes it makes you wonder just what he’s good at. He’s more of a solid at everything good/great at nothing so he appears to be headed for a middling career as a mediocre starter.

Overall: Brandon Linder is a tough, aggressive player that has elite height and arm length which makes him potentially versatile as he could possibly play RT in a pinch for a team. His best fit though is at OG as he lacks the athleticism to stay on the outside and unfortunately he isn’t a great strength guy either so moving him inside doesn’t play to his strengths very well either. He reminds me of Clint Boling from the 2011 Draft as Boling also was a tweener type as he had an OT build but lacked an OT’s athleticism while also lacking elite strength for an OG. Boling has been a disappointment to this point and I’m starting to think Linder will be as well as he can play OG or OT for a team but won’t play either especially well. His best attribute probably is his edge he plays with as it’s loved by quite a few coaching staffs and an “enforcer” is very valuable for an NFL team to have on their OL. A prospect that I’ve had as high as a late 2nd but now drops to an early 4th round grade due to being a classic tweener. Early 4th round as my #8 OG 4/13/13.

9. Evan Finkenberg Arizona St. 6’4 295 Sr.

Combine: Not invited.

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Strengths: 1st team Pac-12 in 2013. He’s very versatile as he started at OG and OT. He played LT for the team in 2011-2013. Looks more like an OG than an NFL OT but the fact he took that coveted spot as a Soph means he has talent as 3 of the 5 OL were Seniors that year. His 1st team Pac-12 season came at LT which showed scouts he is athletic. He is incredibly tenacious as a blocker and loves to mix it up with defenders. He looks like he could play a team’s enforcer or goon if need be.

Weaknesses: He’s not the greatest athlete and likely won’t post better than mediocre numbers at the Combine. He wasn’t invited to the Combine and was only a late addition to the NFLPA All-Star game (the 3rd ranked All-Star event) so quite a few signs are pointing to him going undrafted. I think he’s bigger than 295 but if his listed weight is legit than he will have to gain weight as few guards in the NFL are sub 300 lbs.

Overall: Finkenberg at this point looks like a player that won’t be drafted. That’s surprising to me as he has good height, is strong, was 1st team Pac-12 this year and is one of the most tenacious offensive lineman in this draft. I love his mean streak and was impressed with how he always finished his blocks. Nonetheless he isn’t a great athlete and is slightly undersized so it’s not completely shocking. Hopefully a team brings him into camp so I can see if he becomes the diamond in the rough I think he is. If given a little time to add weight I think Evan could become a very solid starting OG. Due to his game film I won’t be backing down from my assertion that he’s a mid round guy and give him a 4th round grade as my #9 OG 3/1/14.

10. Trey Hopkins Texas 6’3 305 Sr.

Combine: Not invited.

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Strengths: Blue chip prospect in HS. Ranked #141 in ESPN 2010 HS Class. 2nd Team Big 12 in 2012 and 2013. He’s a versatile player with OG and OT experience. He’s a strong, physical player who is an asset in the run game. He could possibly be a backup RT in the pros.

Weaknesses: He doesn’t seem quick enough or long enough to stay at OT in the pros so I doubt his collegiate versatility will translate.

Overall:  In the 2013 NFLPA Practices he was the best OG at the game. He has great strength and can create a hole on his own which is incredibly valuable in the NFL. He doesn’t have great quickness so he likely will have to stay at OG but has enough length to be a serviceable backup RT if injuries occur. In the 2013 NFLPA game he had a few pancake blocks and he really caught my eye as a potential starting guard. Unlike a Chris Watt, Anthony Steen or Kevin Danser he actually has the ability to be a pile driver so he gets a higher grade than those more well known players. 4th round as my #10 OG 3/1/14.

11. Dakota Dozier Furman 6’3 5/8 313 Sr.

Combine: He was average to below average in almost every measurable which isn’t terrible as he’s a phone booth guard but it sure didn’t help. He was pretty flexible in cone drills, especially for his size-far superior to Fulton or Jackson. Good in hip drill.

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40

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Vert

Broad

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3 Cone

6035

313

33.88

9.88

5.42

23

24

805

4.89

8.14

Strengths: At the East-West Shrine game practices he played OG instead of OT and looked very solid. At the East-West Shrine game he dominated Garrison Smith and it appeared to get him angry but Dozier never bit on any of the cheap shots given to him by Smith. He showed good balance, good strength and a mental and physical toughness that impressed me.

Weaknesses: To say that the competition level from Furman to the NFL is a step up is a HUGE understatement. It’s almost 100% guaranteed that he won’t be a contributor as a rookie due to this step up in competition. His Combine drills were solid but his actually numbers were pretty poor as his 5.42 40 was 3rd worst among 50 OL, his ’24 vertical was 5th worst, his 4.89 shuttle was 4th worst and his 8.14 3 cone was 7th worst.

Overall: Dozier is a small school guard with the strength, body and makeup to make it in the NFL. He isn’t a great athlete and he is going to be overwhelmed initially by the step up in talent so I don’t have him nearly as high as some others do but I do like him and I think he’ll eventually develop into a solid starting OG. He’ll fit best in a run oriented scheme that accentuates his size and limits his biggest negative-his below average quickness. He will need to be protected at times by his C or OT but in the right scheme and with patience and coaching he could become a very capable player at the next level. A developmental type with a somewhat high ceiling who is a late 4th rounder as my #11 OG 3/9/14.

12. Kevin Danser Stanford #76 6’5 312 Sr.

Combine: Not invited.

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Strengths: 3rd Team Pac-12 in 2013. 28 career starts. He has good film in 2013 while playing in a Top 4 Conference. He’s a smart player that works well with his line mates and looks to help his teammates when not engaged by a defender. He had a number of pancake blocks in this style when he overwhelmed a defender that was already engaged late in the play. He’s a polished player and is a good technician who might be able to start early on in his career. In the 2013 NFLPA Practices he looked good in one on one drills easily beating the lower level DL at this event. In the 2013 NFLPA game he had a hold and a false start so hardly a clean performance but he blocked his man throughout and looked like the 2nd best OG on the squad.        

Weaknesses: In the 2013 Arizona State game and the 2013 UCLA game he was noticeably inferior to David Yankey as Yankey dominated Will Sutton while Sutton made plays consistently on Danser. He played with an amazing supporting cast as all four of his fellow OL are legit NFL prospects. He’s actually the worst of the 5 OL and makes a scout wonder if his teammates helped cover his flaws. Stanford has been pumping OL prospects out pretty consistently the past 5 years yet none of them have become dominant. It’s not a huge deal, yet, but is something to keep in mind.

Overall: Danser is a scary prospect as in some films he looks just like David Yankey and it makes you wonder how Stanford could have such a dominant offensive line. In other games he’s exposed though and looks like the athletically challenged player he is. When he went to the NFLPA All-Star game he was shown to be a technically sound player with solid experience and great intelligence. Unfortunately he also looked weaker, slower and less athletic than other players with Danser appearing to be a highly polished, low upside type. As such he projects as a solid backup or replacement level starter that could possibly play right away but will have little upside for a team to further develop. 5th round as my #12 OG 3/1/14.

13. Donald Hawkins Texas 6’5 310 Sr.

Combine: Not invited.

Pro Day:

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6045

301

 

 

 

20

 

 

 

 

Strengths: 2nd team Big 12 in 2013. He won the LT job in the spring of 2012 right from the get go showing a great ability acclimate from the JUCO ranks. He has a good overall thickness to him which I like in OL and love in OG prospects.

Weaknesses: He played two seasons in the JUCO ranks. He lacks the athleticism to play LT and probably even RT which is why I classify him as an OG. Unfortunately he never played there during his college career so it will be a transition. He struggled at the East-West Shrine game due to his lack of quickness, of course that was with him at LT which I already assumed he couldn’t play. He showed a horrible lack of strength with only 20 reps on the bench. That’s not an OL number let alone an OG number where athleticism is sometimes less important than pure brute strength.

Overall: Hawkins is a talented player that lacks the athleticism to stay outside but also lacks the experience or strength to play OG. I think he’s still worth a shot though because his film was very good the past two years and because OG is much less difficult to play than OT. He gets a mid/late round grade from me as a 5th rounder as my #13 OG but I doubt at this point he gets drafted and could be had as an undrafted free agent 4/13/14.

14. Jordan McCray UCF #63 6’2 7/8 322 Sr.

Pro Day:

HGT

WGT

Arms

Hands

40

Reps

Vert

Broad

Shuttle

3 Cone

6027

322

 

 

5.53

33

27.5

804

4.93

7.57

Strengths: 1st team AAC in 2013. Team Captain. He has prototypical size (6’3 220) for an NFL guard and he put up great numbers on the bench (33 reps) and explosion drills (8’4 broad, 27 ½ vertical). He looks like the classic “phone booth” guard as he will road grade the player in front of him.

Weaknesses: Not invited to the Combine. He had a very bad 40 time (5.53) at his pro day with the equivalent being a 5.63 which would have placed him last among OL. His quickness drills were also very poor. He could struggle in space and will need to be in a man on man scheme as a zone scheme wouldn’t work well in his favor.

Overall: Identical twin to teammate Justin McCray. Ironically enough he isn’t similar to Justin as a prospect as he’s quicker and a much better OG. In the 2013 Baylor game (BCS bowl game) he impressed me as he consistently got his man blocked and showed good strength at the point of attack. He isn’t a great athlete and will struggle against quicker DTs but he looks like he could develop into an average starter in the NFL. Early 5th round 1/2/14.His Pro Day was weaker than I expected so he drops to the late 5th round but I still really like his game film and think that he could become a solid starter in a year or two. Late 5th round as my #14 OG 4/13/14.

15. Jonathan Halapio Florida 6’3 ½ 323 Sr.

Combine: He missed 2 games in 2013 and struggled through others, showing good toughness but having bad tape nonetheless. He had a terrible Combine with the 4th worst shuttle drill out of 50 OL prospects (4.83), 9th worst broad jump (8’4), the worst vertical (21 ½) and the worst 3 cone drill (8.26). He was average in the movement drill. He was smooth in cone drills. Good in hip drill. He was one of the best in mirror drill.

HGT

WGT

Arms

Hands

40

Reps

Vert

Broad

Shuttle

3 Cone

6034

323

33.63

10.25

5.34

 

21.5

804

4.83

8.26

Strengths: 43 career starts. Freshman All-American. He’s a tough player who fought through injuries to help his team despite them having a poor record. Had a torn pectoral muscle in August but only missed the first 2 games of the year. He’s a smart player and is very smooth in his movements. He has good size and strength with the team clearly missing him when he wasn’t around or wasn’t 100%.

Weaknesses: Redshirted in ’09 and admitted the game was too tough for him right out of HS. Played RT for the Gators in ’10 for the first few games, was benched, then started at RG and was a freshman All American showing that he clearly cannot play OT. His size suggests he will be an OG in the pros. Had compound fracture vs. LSU. He did miss a number of games in his career due to injury so a team will have to determine if he’s 100% and if he’s injury prone or if those were just fluke injuries. He isn’t athletic at all and had some atrocious numbers at the Combine including the worst vertical jump and worst 3 cone drill out of 50 OL. He’s a good at a lot great at nothing type of player as he won’t be great as a run blocker or pass protector but can hold his own in both categories.

Overall: Halapio’s an experienced SEC lineman who is battle tested and shouldn’t be wowed by the step up to NFL caliber competition. He isn’t particularly athletic or powerful though and projects as a low ceiling, average starter who is polished enough to possibly start early in their career. He has no Pro Bowl potential and has only a limited chance at becoming even a good starter but there’s a place for replacement level talent like him and at worst he should provide good depth. I’m hardly giving a ringing endorsement of the kid but he’s smart, he’s a leader and he’s experienced so he should carve a niche for himself on some roster. Late 5th round as my #15 OG 3/1/14.

 

Late round types:

Jordan Hansel Ball State #70 6’4 326 Sr. 1st team All Mac in 2013. Weak side OG in 2013, they flip sides depending on the play. In the 2013 Arkansas St. game he impressed me with his strength and frame but didn’t look good laterally. He easily handled Ryan Carrethers one on one and looks like a good late round flier type in a mauler role. 6th round 1/6/14.

Chris Watts Notre Dame 6’3 310 Sr. He skipped all but 2 drills and one of them he STILL bombed as he had a 5.50 40 which was 2nd worst among the 50 OL. He had a PCL tear in the final regular season game and missed the bowl game too. In the 2013 Rutgers game (bowl game) he was solid and had a nice pancake block on a pull play but he’s nothing more than an average starter at the next level and really was helped by playing next to Zack Martin. 5th round 12/28/13. He continues to look like a low ceiling, polished player at a position of low value. 6th round 3/9/14.

James Stone Tennessee 6’3 5/8 306 Sr. Started as a true freshman at center in ’10 and was very solid. Freshman All American in 2010. Ranked #100 in 2010 HS Class. Was an OT in HS but moved to C. In the 2011 Florida game he allowed a TFL by DT Dominique Easley on the first snap as he was too slow to get the down block on run play away from him (10:30 1st), beat badly by DT Jay Howard for TFL on 3rd and 1 not being quick enough or strong enough to block him when lined up at NT (6:15 1st), beat by Easley but helped by LG Alex Bullard to negate pass rush (7:02 2nd), 3 low snaps in the 2nd Q, 3 low snaps in 3rd Q including bobbled snap that ruined caused 14 yd loss (0:48 3rd), 2 low snaps in the 4th Q. He had a terrible game being outplayed by the two DTs Easley and Howard on blocks and tossing at least 10 low snaps in the game. In the 2011 Georgia game he snapped ball over QBs head for big loss (13:43 3rd). Moved away from C midway through the year due to his poor snaps. Shotgun snaps left handed and snaps from under center right handed. He has extremely long arms, had a good game vs. Oregon in 2013 getting a good push in the run game (though did have a hold against him). Combine: He had a very mixed Combine with a very good 40 (5.17) and good size (6’3 5/8 306 with 33 7/8 arms and 10 1/8 hands) yet had mediocre numbers in the vertical (27 ½), broad (8’9) and shuttle (4.63) and a terrible 3 cone (8.16-6th worst among 50 OL). Terrible in hip drill. At the East-West Shrine game practices he was the best OL as he beat the DL regularly in 1×1 matchups and looked polished. He is an OG though and not a C as Monday he had numerous bad snaps and it was a habit of his at Tennessee before they moved him. In the East-West Shrine game he was plowed back by Justin Ellis, pushed back by Max Bullough on 2nd level block, beat by Beau Allen on edge for sack and FF. He has elite experience and can be a backup C in a pinch but the reality is that he’s always underperformed my expectations and I think he will be overdrafted this April. Late rounder who will be overdrafted in the 3-5 round area for no valid reason. Late 6th round 2/27/14.

Ryan Groy Wisconsin #79 6’5 317 Sr. 2nd team Big 10 in 2012. Played LG in 2013 vs. Iowa. He didn’t look NFL like in his frame-awkward body. 1st Team Big 10 in 2013. LG in 2013. In the 2013 South Carolina game (bowl game) he showed great awareness of who to take and regularly showed great teamwork with his LT and C. He doesn’t look like an NFL player though as he’s slightly hunched back and lacks definition in his body. He pulled a few times and was agile but it didn’t appear good enough to be something an NFL team would accentuate. He did battle 1×1 vs. Kelcy Quarles and consistently got the job done but I don’t consider Quarles anything more than a mid round guy so it’s not incredibly impressive. He’s a tough guy to grade as he consistently gets the job done at this level but in the NFL I question whether he will be able to. 6th round 1/22/14. Combine: He had a good 40 (5.19) and 10 yd (1.75) yet once again looked very frumpy and un-NFL like. He has extremely thin legs and I worry he’ll be too top heavy. He struggled in pad drill and didn’t look strong at all. Average in hip drill. I continue to doubt that he will translate well to the next level. As such I’m keeping him as a late round flier type. 6th round 3/1/14.

Brian Clarke Bloomsburg #77 6’3 290 Sr. 1st Team Little All-American in 2013. In the 2013 NFLPA Practices he’s undersized and occasionally was pushed back but showed good quickness and stayed in front of everyone in the 1 on 1 drills. In the 2013 NFLPA game he was beat off the snap for a sack by Khyri Thornton. 6th round 1/19/14.

Jared Wheeler Miami #73 Sr. In the 2013 NFLPA game he looked solid with a few pancake blocks and good combination of quickness and strength. Early 7th round 1/20/14.

Anthony Steen Alabama 6’3 314 Sr. In the 2011 Penn St. game he somehow completely whiffed on his DT in a short area right off the ball to allow a TFL (11:22 3rd).Starting RG in 2012. In the 2012 Tennessee game he had a good pull block sealing edge for outside run. In the 2012 Notre Dame (BCS Championship) game he showed poor recognition and lateral quickness to get to blitzing LB for TFL. He’s clearly the weak link on their OL and a late round guy at best but will be returning 1/7/13. Combine: He didn’t work out at the Combine but still had a bad day with 30 ½ arms (worst out of 50 OL). 2nd team SEC in 2013. He never impressed me on film but is experienced, well coached and he has solid strength. He looks inferior to both Chris Watt and Kevin Danser but is similar in style as none of the three are great athletes and all were considered to be the mediocre players on elite offensive lines yet each has just enough to warrant a look as a late round pick. 7th round as my # OG 3/9/14.

Karim Barton Morgan St. #74 6’3 315 Sr. 1st Team All-MEAC in 2013. In the 2013 NFLPA Practices he showed very good strength and had a thick lower body but was slow and didn’t finish his blocks. Clearly inferior to Trey Hopkins who he played with all week. 7th round 1/19/14.

Andrew Miller Virginia Tech #74 6’4 293 Sr. 3rd Team ACC in 2013. Starting RG in 2013. In the 2013 UCLA game (bowl game) he looked quick, agile and experienced. He is undersized and doesn’t get any push in the run game but he could develop into an average starter in a zone scheme. 7th round 1/23/14.

Mason Walters Texas Sr. #27 in ESPN 150 for ’09. Has a mean streak and is somewhat of an emotional leader for their OL. In the 2011 Baylor game he had a spectacular pass pro on DT going outside getting him on an island and just stoning him (14:10 2nd), very poor cut block with DT stepping right over him for 4 sec sack. In the 2012 Oklahoma game he wasn’t noticed as OU dominated but he was relatively solid. 3rd team Big 12 in 2013. P: Very experienced with 51 consecutive starts in his career. In the 2013 Oregon game (bowl game) he had a false start but otherwise was quiet. He was at best the #3 most talented OL on the team which is pretty bad considering the UT OL is hardly dominant this season. He looks like a late round mauler type who should get drafted due to his experience and his big game/big school background. 7th round 1/8/14.

Blake Treadwell Michigan St. #64 6’3 304 Sr. 2nd Team Big 10 in 2013. In the 2013 Ohio St. game (Big 10 championship) he was beat by Michael Bennett off the snap for a pressure, he was beat occasionally with quickness but he impressed me with his tenacity and hustle. He had a few pancake blocks but all were in space and he seemed adept at getting a hat on a hat in space. Overall he looked like a fringe draftable prospect. 7th round 1/26/14.

 

Free Agents

Zachery Fulton Tennessee Sr. Started as a true freshman at RG in ’10 and was very solid. In the 2012 North Carolina St. game he got start at RG, false start, not noticeably good or bad. 40 career starts. Combine: He had by far the worst shuttle (5.16) of anyone as it was .16 worse than anyone and .30 worse than all but 3 OL. He looked slow in the movement drill. He has a huge lower body though so he can anchor with the best of them. He looked very tight in cone drills. Tight but not terrible in hip drill. Good in mirror drill. Free Agent 3/1/14.

Austin Wentworth Fresno State Sr. Starting LT in 2013. Isn’t a LT and maybe isn’t even an OT as lacks lateral quickness. He is a big guy though and in the 2013 Boise St. game he held Demarcus Lawrence in check easily. He played OT as a senior but at the East-West Shrine game practices he played OG and was one of the few players that could handle DT Justin Ellis. Free Agent who has good film 4/13/14/

Matthew Patchan Boston College He played 5 years sparingly at Florida due to numerous injuries (pectoral, back, ACL, and various other leg injuries). He x-fer to BC when his OL coach left Florida for there and got a 6th year granted to him by the NCAA. He was injury free in 2013. He had a great 40 (4.97) and on one attempt at a historic 10 yd split (1.59)! He also had 33 ½ vertical which was 1st among the 50 OL. Elite Combine gets him a free agent grade but no higher due to his extreme medical dossier. Free Agent 4/13/14.

Josh Walker Middle Tennessee #77 6’5 320 Sr. 1st team C-USA in 2013. Starting LG in 2013. In the 2013 Navy game (bowl game) he impressed me with his size, quickness and strength. He was a man amongst boys against the cadets and pancaked players left and right. I hope he goes to an All-Star game because I want to see him against better competition. Free Agent who could have been higher on my board but I never got a chance to see him again 3/1/14.

Marcus Hall Ohio St. #79 Sr. In the 2013 Penn St. game he had a pancake block on DE Deion Barnes when he “cracked back.” He was ejected due to the punches he threw in the Michigan fight. As he was leaving he gave the double bird to the Michigan crowd so Urban Meyer didn’t start him in the Big 10 Championship game. He ended up not even playing in the game. Free Agent who at times impressed me but who has a lot of red flags character and maturity wise 3/1/14.

Billy Turner North Dakota St. Combine: He had a good 40 (5.16) and a solid 10 yd split (1.77). His quickness drills were below average but not terrible and at 6’4 7/8 315 with ’34 arms and ’10 hands he looks like the classic small school project. He was tight in cone drill. He is very raw but has some talent to work with. Free Agent 3/1/14.

John Urschel Penn State Sr. He struggled a lot at East-West Shrine game practices with false starts, poor hand placement and an inability to maintain blocks. Combine: He is an extremely intelligent kid who has been published in celestial math magazines due to his thesis paper. He had a bad 40 style wise with hands waving all around. He was a bit out of control in cone drill. Free Agent due to intelligence and experience 2/20/14.

Andrew Norwell Ohio State #78 6’6 319 Sr. 2nd Team Big 10 in 2013. LG in 2013. In the 2013 Michigan St. game (Big 10 championship) he made a poor decision on a blitz allowing a sack on 3rd down, he didn’t look strong or quick but did have a big frame at 6’6. Camp invite 1/26/14.

Parker Graham Oklahoma St. #71 6’7 315 Sr. 1st team Big 12 in 2013. Starting RT in 2013. Plays like an OG not an OT and will have to move inside in the pros. In the 2013 Oklahoma game he had a holding penalty and showed neither the strength nor the athleticism I was expecting considering how highly rated he is. Camp invite 12/14/13.

DeAnthony Sims Houston #79 6’3 320 Sr. 2nd team AAC in 2013. LT in 2013 but doesn’t look like an OT and will have to move inside. Camp invite 3/1/14.

Christopher Burnett Georgia 6’2 322 Sr. At the East-West Shrine game he looked like a mediocre college guard with good size and poor movement skills. Camp invite who has a VERY small chance at the next level 2/27/14.

Justin McCray UCF #64 6’3 310 Sr. 1st team AAC in 2013. Team Captain. Identical twin to teammate Jordan McCray. In the 2013 Baylor game (BCS bowl game) he struggled all game with his blocks. Despite being an identical twin to Jordan, being a team captain and also being listed at 6’3 310 he is nothing like Jordan. Justin lacks the quickness or bend of his brother and doesn’t look like a draftable prospect. Camp invite 1/2/14.

Steven Haunga Arkansas St. #60 6’2 313 Sr. 1st team Sun Belt in 2013. LG in 2013.  Looks Samoan with big hair like Domata Peko. In the 2013 Ball St. game he didn’t impress me. Barely a camp invite 1/6/14.

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