Now that we're past the NFL combine, we have a clearer picture as to who the top NFL Draft prospects are at offensive tackle. Here's my personal top 3 linemen headed into the 2014 NFL Draft.
#1 Greg Robinson, OT Auburn
40 yard- 4.92 seconds Vertical jump- 28.5 in
Bench Press- 32 reps Broad Jump- 113.0 in
3 Cone Drill- 7.8 seconds 20 yard shuttle- 4.86 seconds
Auburn offensive lineman Greg Robinson runs a drill at the NFL football scouting combine in Indianapolis, Saturday, Feb. 22, 2014. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)
After the recent Combine the 3rd team All-American Left Tackle solidified his spot as the top lineman in the upcoming NFL Draft. Listed at 6’5 330 lbs. the mammoth sized tackle also proved he had the size and quickness to compete at the next level. He is hands down the best run blocker coming into the draft; he was the anchor of the Auburn line which led the FBS in rushing yards. Most of his power comes from his lower body but his long arms and good hand positioning allow him to maneuver defenders as he pleases. The only concern scouts seem to have is his pass blocking ability. He pass blocked well at auburn, but he didn’t have to pass block often. Scouts would certainly love to see more of him protecting the pocket. He Should be a top 5 pick my guess would be going 2nd to the St. Louis Rams.
#2 Jake Matthews, OT Texas A&M
40 yard- 5.07 seconds Vertical jump- 30.5 in
Bench Press- 24 reps Broad Jump- 105.0 in
3 Cone Drill- 7.34 seconds 20 yard shuttle- 4.47 seconds
The AP 1st team All-American certainly comes from a good football pedigree, his father Bruce is a Hall of Famer, and his cousin Clay is an all pro Linebacker for the Green Bay Packers. He is yet another lineman who projects well at the next level. His athleticism and size (at 6’5, 309lbs) make him an ideal candidate to protect your quarterback. One of his plus sides is that he fits well into and blocking scheme. Whether you have a pocket passer or a QB who likes to scramble, he has the ability and experience to contain his man and extend his blocks. The biggest concerns around him come about his arm length, whether or not he will be able to extend his arms into NFL DE’s. due to the needs of the teams in the top 5 I do not see him getting drafted there, however I certainly see him as a top 10 pick possibly going 6th to the Atlanta Falcons.
#3 Taylor Lewan, OT Michigan
40 yard- 4.87 seconds Vertical jump- 30.5 in
Bench Press- 29 reps Broad Jump- 117.0 in
3 Cone Drill- 7.39 seconds 20 yard shuttle- 4.49 seconds
The 2nd team All-American easily put on the best show at the combine. A lot of scouts were looking to see his broad jump and vertical jump, since his explosiveness was in question, and he did nothing but impress. He has incredible knowledge of the game, and is great at reading the defense in front of him. He is very lean for the tackle position at 6’7 309, but doesn’t appear to be lacking any strength because of it. The biggest concerns for him were the accusations of him being a dirty player. A lot of DE’s made comments about it after games played. The videos show it all, and with his great 4 year performance at Michigan I see no reason this guy is not also a top 10 pick. I see him going 9th overall to Buffalo.