Offensive Tackle ~ Trevor Clemmings PittsBurgh Panthers ~ 6045/308
The Gutters are riddled with the Corpses of Teams that were built around so-called "skill" Players ~ teams that delighted their Fantasy FootBall Fans every Year, all the way until January...until The Only Games That Really Matter.
It is then, of course, that the Capacity ~ or lack thereof ~ to Move The Chains and protect the QuarterBack against PlayOff Caliber Defenses rears its ugly head. And another Team built for Fantasy FootBall bites the dust.
This is how I break things down, when I'm evaluating Offensive Tackles:
Power: Above all: Core Power. Torso Power is important, but Core Power, from the Knees to the Ribs, is absolutely crucial. All the upper body Strength in the world will still fail if you simply can't dig in your heels. But Core Power enables an Offensive Lineman to project Power in the Running Game and to reject Power in the Passing Game.
Agility: Launch 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: Paw Power, Mechanics ~ Hand Speed & Positioning ~ and of course: Frame.
Intangibles: Processing Speed and Motor. Processing Speed or Diagnostic Velocity is about how quickly and effectively one Reads & Reacts to how the Rapidly Roiling Tactical LandScape effects Blocking Schemes, and Motor is about Endurance and Drive: How much Work has been put into Conditioning, and how it manifests itself.
Run Blocking: Power, Agility, Combat Skills, Processing Speed, and Motor.
Pass Blocking: Power, Agility, Combat Skills, Processing Speed, and Motor.
Broken down into SubCategories, it'd go something like this:
* Core Power ~ lower body Power. Core Power trumps Torso Power. Tyrannosaurus Rex had exceptional Core Power.
* Torso Power ~ upper Body Power. Important, but not crucial. T Rex had lousy Torso Power...yet was King.
* Anchoring Strength in the Passing Game. The capacity to Stand one's Ground.
* Drive Power in the Running Game. The capacity to drive your man back.
* Fluidity, above all things: Core Agility & Flexibility makes everything possible.
* Launch Velocity ~ Speed into Contact off the Snap.
* Acceleration ~ Short Speed or Quickness.
* Paw Power ~ The Power & Speed of the initial Punch.
* Paw Velocity ~ How active the Hands are.
* Paw Positioning ~ It's all about Angles & Leverage.
* Frame ~ Above all: WingSpan.
* Processing Speed ~ Field Vision. Reading Defensive Schemes quickly and effectively, and finding 2nd Level Targets.
* Motor ~ Intensity and Duration.
* Power ~ Drive Power to project Power in the Running Game.
* Agility ~ especially Acceleration DownField or to the Flank.
* Combat Skills
* Processing Speed
* Power ~ Anchoring Strength to reject Power in the Passing Game.
* Agility ~ especially Fluidity to Mirror the Pass Rusher.
* Combat Skills
* Processing Speed
Agility: Magnificent. Utterly serpentine Fluidity. Explosive Launch Velocity. Phenomenal Acceleration.
Combat Skills: Competitive and with tremendous Potential. Still rather raw in terms of Timing and Mechanics, but he improved dramatically this Year, already displays outstanding Paw Power, and has an utterly optimal Frame.
Intangibles: Phenomenal. Clemmings only joined the BattleField as an High School Junior because of Mom's concerns, as I understand it, and then, after developing into an exceptional Defensive Prospect, was suddenly asked to switch to Offensive Tackle just two Years ago. For him to've developed his Game to such an impressive level in such a preposterously short period tells me all I need to know about both his Diagnostic Velocity...and his Motor.
Run Blocking: Tremendous and trending towards dominant. Clemmings combines outstanding and improving Drive Power with phenomenal Acceleration DownField and to the Flanks. He's got the Power to excel in a Power Blocking Scheme and the Agility to excel in Zone...And I can foresee him doing so, frankly, at all 5 Positions.
Pass Blocking: Mediocre, but with equally spectacular Potential. Impressive Anchoring Strength and absolutely serpentine Fluidity to Mirror. His Mechanics are raw but improving and he's still developing his Frame, what with the relatively recent transition from BasketBall: His Anchor will improve considerably, I believe, and his WingSpan is magnificent.
He was at a Standing Start, 6 Years ago, spent the next 4 Years developing into a potentially dynamic Defensive Prospect, was suddenly asked to scrap all he'd learned and become an Offensive Tackle...and in 2 short Years has rapidly developed into a Force. He's gone from Zero to Sixty in a Blink...and he's still accelerating.
Add to that a Frame which is perfect for a Left Tackle ~ 6045 in Length with a pteradactylian WingSpan. For my Money, they can keep the 6070/6080 Offensive Tackles. I don't reject those guys outright, but Trench Wars are won down low. Just thinking of some 6070 Tower trying to get down and Square Up with a 6030 Dragon makes my back ache.
60 Minutes can grind on a guy. Compounding that with a Leverage Liability isn't my idea of Smart FootBall.
I want a 6050 guy with a strong Core, a long WingSpan, and all the Core Fluidity and explosive Agility I can find.
And, yeah: I must say that I'm amused to read Commentary suggesting that he might optimally switch from Right Tackle to Left Tackle ~ I agree 1000% ~ yet describing such a switch as a necessity ~ it is not ~ and a mark against'm!!
Considering how difficult it is to find a Top Tier Left Tackle, and how many college Offensive Tackles need to be shunted inside to Guard, I think the Team that drafts'm will find a way to get over the horror of the transition!!
Having said that: He would also make a tremendous Right Tackle: The Panthers loved running behind'm.
It's all about Trajectory, baby.
I believe that Trevor Clemmings, by developing as rapidly and as tremendously as he has over the last 2 to 6 Years, has made it crystal clear that he brings both a relentless Motor, an insatiable Appetite for Greatness, and phenomenal Diagnostic Acuity and Processing Speed to the Field of Battle. And when I imagine those traits being combined with spectacular Agility and a perfect Frame for the gig, I'm ready to bet everything I've got on'm.
Grateful Thanks, as always, for the crucial Work done by the folks at Draft BreakDown!!
This is not is even remotely a Complaint, mind you, but rather a Warning: Caveat Emptor!!