Offensive Tackle ~ Will Richardson ~ North Carolina State WolfPack ~ 6054/306
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 Torso Power 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 especially so in the Hand to Hand Combat that characterizes Trench Warfare. All the Power in the World goes only so far if you're lurching around like FrankenStein.
Frame: Vertical Leverage, Hands, Arm Length, and WingSpan.
Combat Skills: Horizontal Leverage, Paw Positioning, Paw Persistence, and FootWork.
Processing Speed: How quickly and effectively one Reads & Reacts to the Rapidly Roiling Tactical LandScape!!
Motor: Endurance and Drive: How much Work has been put into Conditioning, and how it manifests itself.
Run Blocking: Applying it all: Power, Agility, Frame, Combat Skills, Processing Speed, and Motor.
Pass Blocking: Power, Agility, Frame, 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.
* Vertical Leverage. Height is crucial, but it's actually better, I believe, to be an Inch shorter than an Inch Taller.
* Hands. The larger the better, generally, but compact is never a bad Attribute in The Trenches.
* Arm Length. Absolutely crucial. He who boasts the longer Arms initiates Combat.
* WingSpan. Arm Length + Torso Width. A more complete Measurement.
* Lateral Leverage. Angles. Getting Square or better with the Target.
* Paw Positioning ~ It's all about Angles & Leverage.
* Paw Persistence ~ RPMs: Activity & Persistence.
* FootWork ~ RPMs: Activity & Persistence.
* Reading & Reacting to Defensive Schemes & Stunts quickly and effectively.
* Field Vision: Finding Targets & approaching them effectively.
* Power ~ Drive Power to project Power in the Running Game.
* Agility ~ especially Acceleration DownField or to the Flank.
* Frame ~ especially Vertical Leverage.
* Combat Skills.
* Processing Speed.
* Power ~ Anchoring Strength to reject Power in the Passing Game.
* Agility ~ especially Fluidity to Mirror the Pass Rusher.
* Frame ~ especially WingSpan.
* Combat Skills.
* Processing Speed.
Power: 40. Decent Torso Power but mediocre Core Power.
Agility: 40. Adequate Acceleration but mediocre Launch Velocity and marginal Fluidity.
Frame: 80. Sufficient Height. Tremendous WingSpan.
Combat Skills: 75. Impressive in all regards ~ Paw Positioning, Lateral Leverage, FootWork, and Paw Persistence.
Processing Speed: 75. Consistently does a good job of reading and reacting quickly and effectively.
Motor: 60. Exceptional Intensity. Mediocre Stamina.
Run Blocking: 50, in any Scheme. Intangibles compensate for Tangibles.
Pass Blocking: 60. Intangibles and that lovely WingSpan.
Red Flag: Two Arrests. DWI and Pot. Once is only an incident. Twice is perhaps a coincidence, but troubling.
Two arrests, the second more disturbing because it was just last year, and questions about Conditioning, combined with shaky Power and Agility, most of it tied to marginal Core Fluidity, which inhibits both, all raise serious concerns.
His Frame is excellent, and despite those issues pointing to questions about Intangibles ~ Maturity and Conditioning ~ he nevertheless scores exceptionally well ~ in my book, any way ~ in aspects of the Game ~ Processing Speed, Motor, and Combat Skills ~ which reflect very highly on Intangibles...His is a decidedly mixed bag of indicators.
My impression is that of a young man who's made some dumb moves, but who is maturing, and who has exhibited that he is an intelligent hard worker with good Instincts. His Power and Agility are shaky, but his outstanding WingSpan, if effectively used, can go a long way towards compensating for those...and it is effectively used.
There is definitely risk, here. He's gonna have to bust his ass hard and persistently to overcome his physical deficiencies sufficiently enough to compete at the next level. That's gonna take a lot of sustained focus, and while he seems to me to be trending upwards in that regard, I do not presume to know the guy. I'm only making an educated guess, and, considering his history of getting high at the wrong times and his history of Conditioning issues, I'm not betting the house.
If he continues to evolve, I believe that he can improve both his Power and his Agility through sustained focus on his Core Agility, and if that transpires, his WingSpan, combined with realistic improvements in those aspects of his Game could potentially translate into his becoming an effective starting Right Tackle, and maybe a good one.
Ceiling? Warrior. 2nd Round.
Floor? Reserve. 6th/7th Round.
Risk/Reward Ratio? 50/50.
Thank you so very much, Draft BreakDown, without whom my Work would be virtually impossible.
Please also note, Fellow FootBall Fiends: These CyberScouting Reports are not intended as predictions of success or failure, but as assessments ~ ludicrously amateurish assessments ~ of potential success. FootBall is a rough and often unfair business, and many a worthy Prospect has fallen far short of his potential, sometimes not because of his own failings, but because of those of coaching, scheme, timing...or because huge investments were made on other Prospects.
In other words: If any of my Super Dooper Deeper Sleepers ever fail to fulfill their vast potential, I’m confident that it goes without saying that it wasn’t their fault…or mine!!...Yes, I think that I'm being funny.
In other words: Caveat Emptor, Fellow FootBall Fiends!!
Enter at your own risk!!