NFL Draft Prospect Review: Offensive Tackles


Here’s the third edition of the NFL Draft Prospect Review. Rather than doing a series of full scouting reports in the middle of the season I wanted to look at one game from each player at a certain position each week. This is not at all meant to be a scouting report for the player; it’s simply an early look at what a prospect brings to the table for the 2016 NFL Draft. For example, this week I put together notes on four offensive tackles that had cut-ups available here at Draft Breakdown. If you ever have suggestions for what position or specific player you want to see,  hit me up on Twitter! (@DBRyan_Dukarm)

 

Zach Banner (USC) vs Stanford zachbanner

Navigates well to the second level, got low and established his hands on the linebacker. Seemed to get hips around quickly to seal off lanes in the run game, got low and lined up feet, hips and hands in unison. Can move well through traffic on the line and keep his balance through the second level. Showed come good grit and competitive toughness, finishes his blocks pretty well. Very big size helps in pass pro, however his traits suggest that he will get blown up by power rushers, generally overwhelmed Stanford’s smaller rushers in this game with his size. Struggles to move quickly laterally, especially in his kick step in pass protection and results in getting beat by edge benders. Waist bender in pass pro, gets reachy going forward and will fall off balance.

 

Ronnie Stanley (Notre Dame) vs UMassstanley2

Rare initial quickness off the snap both in the run and pass game, routinely first OL off the ball.  Very good foot quickness in pass protection, moves quickly into kick slide and doesn’t cross feet or get off balance. Good hip flexibility, can seal block and create lanes with his body positioning. Smart player, good understanding of lanes in zone blocking scheme and understands when to leave double team to move to second level blocks. Marginal hand/grip strength in this game while drive blocking, he failed to effectively grab onto defenders and establish his grip when asked to run block straight ahead. Doesn’t have great knee bend in pass pro, tends to lean at the waist and will struggle against better competition. Gets a very narrow base when moving in pass protection, results in being off balance and struggling against lateral counter moves.

 

Jack Conklin (Michigan State) vs Oregonjack conklin

Right from the start shows he’s a gritty player, shoving defenders well through when block is needed. Violent hands and play strength in drive blocking game, shoots hands and over power DL. Initial kick step in pass protection lacks width, he generally reverts to a backpedal to get into position and loses leverage against defender. Gets reachy and overextended in pass pro, when he establishes his hands he’ll then be overextended and the defender will shed block. No pop in initial pass protection punch, tends to get wide and weak hands that fail to stun defender. Consistently lunges forward in pass pro, does not kick slide back and anticipate contact, reaches forward and falls. Poor balance, struggles to routinely keep his feet in both run and pass game, gets blown off balance through initial contact. Doesn’t have the athleticism and mobility to get hips around to seal lanes. Will get stood up in run game because of hand placement, aims wide which results in exposed chest that sacrifices his leverage. This was not a good game for Conklin in my opinion, as he was too inconsistent (albeit against some very good competition) for my liking. There’s a lot of football to played this year and it was only one game so Conklin should recover well.

 

Cam Robinson (Alabama) vs Georgiacam robinson

The first thing that pops off the tape is his burst off the snap, especially in the run game, as he routinely moves his entire body into position to create an early seal in the run game. He’s a mean, strong and physical blocker, fights hard with his hands and makes sure to have last contact with a defender. Good hip mobility and flexibility, gets low through contact when drive blocking and anchors well to at least break even in one on one situations. Very good hand strength, when he grabs defender in chest area they rarely, if ever, break free, extends and controls with ease.  Very good leverage in the run game, sets feet and is routinely the lower man, even at 6’6’’. Play strength is very good in the run game, extremely violent and physical hands that allow him to toss defenders once he establishes contact at the POA. Adequate athletic ability, limited pass block opportunities due to score and weather but looks sluggish in his kick step, his frame/bulk likely a large part of that. Struggles to move into space, definitely over runs linebackers on the second level due to struggles changing direction. Adequate use of hands in space, generally relies on overwhelming defender with his size due to only adequate athletic ability. Dips head routinely before contact in the run game when he’s not lined up directly opposite a defender. Very inconsistent with his hand usage, gets hands into defender’s breastplate but generally fails to establish his grip and allows defender to shed the block.