Displays good length and does do a pretty good job extending his arms into blocks and anchoring at the point on contact. However, doesn't generate much of a burst off the snap in the run game and is really limited on the move. Has the upper body strength to seal on contact, engulf defenders and can be heavy handed. But doesn't exhibit much of a snap through his hips as an in-line guy who does play with the type of leverage to routinely drive defenders off the ball.
Impression: A big, heavy-footed offensive tackle who has the size to get into an NFL training camp, but doesn't seem coordinated enough to hold up in the pass game or generate enough pop as an in-line guy to win in the run game at the next level."
Weaknesses: Does not display much aggression. Regularly grabs the outside of the defenders' shoulder pads instead of attacking his chest to drive and steer him out of the play. Does not make the first contact and tends to wait and catch the defender. Lacks a nasty demeanor when run blocking. Doesn't take good pursuit angles and often fails to keep his body square. Fails to explode off the ball in the run game and also struggles to hold his ground against bull rushers. Can open his hips and get beat to the inside. Ineffective when cut blocking and struggles to take down athletic defensive ends. Could do a better job keeping his feet moving once engaged. Missed time in 2007, '08 and 2010 with foot and ankle injuries. Not a vocal leader on the field or in the locker room and his competitiveness has been questioned."
Positive: Nice-sized blocker who plays with terrific quickness. Immediately gets off the snap, blocks with a wide base, and displays better-than-average footwork in pass protection. Keeps his feet moving throughout the play, relatively quick, and gets his hands into defenders. Stays square, understands angles and body positioning, and uses them to seal defenders from the action. Strong and controls defenders once engaged in a block.
Negative: Not a natural knee bender and gets tall as the play proceeds. Stiff, struggles to adjust, and is best in a small area.
Analysis: Brewer has strong-side tackle size yet better than average quickness in pass protection. He must polish his game, improve his flexibility, and consistently block with leverage. Brewer offers some upside and has an outside shot to break into a starting lineup in the near future."
Negatives: Marginal athlete... Gets too high off the snap in pass protection... Doesn't possess the lateral range to play Left Tackle in the NFL... Slow to redirect, especially inside... Can be beat by speed... Choppy kick step, poor footwork on the edge... Leans, overextends and lunges to reach the corner... Loses his balance too often... Inconsistent display of power at POA... Awkward in space, lacks good flexibility and body control... Gathers himself and wobbles breaking down on the move... Doesn't make a lot of contact down field... Small area player who might have to move inside to Guard."
2010 Honors: Received honorable mention All-Big Ten from the league's coaches and media ... also a third team All-Big Ten selection by Phil Steele's magazine.
2010 (Senior): Started nine games at right tackle ... missed three games with an ankle injury ... front five shared 15th nationally surrendering 1.0 sack per game ... offensive line allowed one sack per 42.8 pass attempts, which led the Big Ten ... Brewer allowed just two sacks on the year ... IU led the league and ranked 14th nationally with 287.2 passing yards per game ... Hoosiers threw for a school-record 480 yards vs. No 19 Michigan ... team surpassed 350 passing yards three times and 300 passing yards on six occasions ... voted a game captain twice.
2009 (Junior): Started all 12 games at right tackle ... offensive line allowed just 16 sacks on the season, a total that ranked second in the Big Ten and shared 28th nationally ... the front five surrendered one sack per 27.5 pass attempts, which ranked second in the Big Ten ... Hoosiers finished second in conference games only with 262.4 passing yards per game ... also ended year fourth in overall games and 35th nationally with 247.9 passing yards per game ... team rushed for over 180 yards on four occasions, including 197 yards at No. 23 Michigan and 196 yards vs. Purdue ... 197 yards was IU's second-highest rushing total in 60 all-time games vs. Michigan.
2008 (Sophomore): Saw action in the first eight games of the season on the offensive line before suffering a season-ending ankle injury.
2007 (Freshman): Missed the 2007 season with a foot injury.
2006: Redshirted the 2006 season.
Prep/Personal: Offensive guard under head coach Rob Patchett at Arlington High School ... began playing football again as a senior after playing basketball as a sophomore and junior ... spent first two years of high school at Warren Central and one year at Lawrence Central before transferring to Arlington, where he earned 5A All-State recognition ... garnered Indianapolis Star All-City football honors in 2005 ... parents are James Brewer, Sr., and Neitra Squires ... James Da'One Brewer is a general studies major.
Strengths: Outstanding size and length. Long arms (35 4/8) and huge hands (10 3/8) help to handle edge rushers. Surprisingly nimble player considering his size. Former basketball player who shows nice footwork and a smooth kick-slide out of his stance. Has the lateral agility and length to handle the speed rushers off the edge. Is able to get to the second level and doesn't look lost in space. Despite his size, does a decent job winning the leverage battle, bending at the knees and keeping his pad level low. Has faced some very tough, NFL-caliber DEs in his time in the Big Ten.
Weaknesses: Brewer is one of the more passive players I've seen. He's never an attacker out of his stance, preferring to absorb the defender and then stay in his way. Once he's engaged, he drops anchor and doesn't move his feet enough. He's battled ankle injuries throughout his career at Indiana. Missed the entire 2007 season, missed the final 4 games of 2008, and missed 3 games in 2010. Isn't viewed as a leader on the team.
Projection: There's no denying Brewer's ability, but his want-to is really going to come into question. Teams will have to determine just how important football is to Mr. Brewer when they talk to him at the Combine and subsequent events. On ability alone, he'll hear his name somewhere in the 3rd or 4th rounds of the 2011 NFL Draft."
The offensive tackle class lacks a true star and Brewer can certainly fly off draft boards if he tests well at the Combine (and perhaps gets invited to a senior All-Star game). Brewer could afford to add more "good weight", meaning muscle. For a man his size, he is not particularly strong and tends to lean on guys in run blocking rather than driving them with his lower body. He needs to continue to play well against the elite defensive ends in the Big Ten in order to separate himself.
Currently, there aren't many positives to his game. But his huge frame will certainly wet the appetite of an overconfident offensive line coach somewhere in the NFL. Brewer has good enough footwork for his size to hold someone's attention."
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