Tennessee Volunteers ~ 6056/324
These are the Aspects of their Games that I place greatest emphasis on, when evaluating Offensive Tackles:
Power. Above all: Core Power. Upper body Strength is important, but Core Power, from the Knees to the Ribs, is absolutely crucial. All the upper body strength in the world still fails if you can't dig in your heels. But Core Power enables a Lineman to project Power in the Running Game and to reject Power in the Passing Game. And those Players who invest the time and effort to develop superior Core Power are far likelier to enjoy sustained good Health and stay on the Field.
Agility. Lateral Velocity, Acceleration, and above all: Fluidity or Core Agility. Core Agility is even more essential to sustained good Health ~ and to sustained good FootBall ~ than Core Power. The ability to react with Serpentine smoothness is a tremendous asset in all Aspects of the Game, and certainly in the Hand to Hand Combat that characterizes Trench Warfare. All the Power in the World goes only so far if you're stiff and lumbering out there.
Combat Skills. Mechanics. Launch Velocity, Paw Power, and Technique.
Intangibles. Diagnostic Capacity, Processing Speed, and Motor. How effectively he masters Spatial Diagnostics & Angles, how rapidly he recognizes and implements Blocking Schemes based on changing Defensive Tactics, and of course: Drive. How badly he wants it. These are of course difficult things to assess, but it's crucial to at least try to.
Power. Excellent, and potentially awesome as he develops.
Agility. Mediocre Lateral Velocity. Often finds himself lunging to keep up. Surprising Acceleration for such a Beast: an impressive Burst UpField. Mediocre Fluidity. Too often looks stiff and slow. Speed will give'm big Problems.
Combat Skills. Outstanding. Exceptional Mechanics & Paw Power in only his 2nd Year. Quick Off The Snap.
Intangibles. Adequate Processing Speed. Tremendous Motor: Outstanding Endurance for such a Behemoth.
Mind you: He's no Slug, out there, especially for such a big guy. But I believe, at this point, that his level of Fluidity, Lateral Viscosity, and general Agility will give him serious problems at The Next Level, if he stays at Left Tackle.
As a Right Tackle, on the other hand, he could prove to be an outstanding Run Blocker.
I'd still be concerned about'm as a Pass Blocker, however.
As a Right Guard, though? In a Power Scheme, as opposed to a Zone Scheme?
He could be really good.
Even so: The 1st Round is definitely too Rich a price to pay, in my view.
I reached a very similar Conclusion about Danny Fluker, last Year.
Thanks, as always, to the extraordinary Work by the men of Draft BreakDown!!
Consensus Market Value