Thursday, March 19, 2009
Mahatma's Post Combine Player Rankings: OTs
A very strong class of players available for those needing an ungrade (cough Steelers) but also so much potential hope in the mid rounds as well. I'll take you through the cast of hundreds but still this is a very good class for Tackles and Centers. Guards are a bit meh but have the guards in the league now are former tackles anyway so whatever.
Andre Smith was a #1 pick before the bowl games and has promptly decided that he doesn't want to be the richest 22 yr old alive. Sadly he decided to get an agent a week too soon. Than he decided to not work out prior to the combine. Than he went to the combine and was out of shape so he left. Now he just had his pro day and his numbers went to shit. Just a horrendous couple of months for Smith who had the game tape to go #1 easily.
With Smith throwing away money, Jason Smith from THE Baylor university has risen up the boards and is a potential sleeper pick for number 1. Smith had a solid combine and while his tape isn't nearly as impressive as Andre's, Jason actually showed up. He put up the second highest amount of reps on the bench and displayed a decent 40 speed for a guy 310 lbs at 5.1.
Right behind Smith is D'Brickashaw Ferguson 2k9 in Eugene Monroe. Monroe is similar to Jason Smith in that both are nimble LT with decent feet. Monroe should still a top 5 pick like D'Brick but display a similar career arch. Will he ever be Orlando Pace? Doubtful but many teams would kill for D'Brick.
Oher is an interesting case. He dominated in college and could do the same thing in the pros but there are noticeable questions involving his mind. Teams will also test him out quite a bit in interviews and see how well he can pick up an offensive scheme at the pro level. Much was made of his upbringing as a child and his struggles to get his grades in order in high school in the book, The Blind Side: The Evolution of a Game by Michael Lewis. In Ole Miss it didn't matter but will it in the pros? If Oher can handle the mental aspect of the game than he might be the best tackle out of this group. Oher also slipped in pass protection a bit this year which caused him to drop in some scouts eyes. Still he shouldn't last past 15.
Britton and Beatty are mere replicas. Their main concern is weight and if they can bulk up and increase their strength, both will be mainstays for the long run. Doubtful overall. Both are as talented as anyone feet wise but in my book that only translates to Robert Gallery. However, both have shot up this whole season and might be in the first round after their respective pro days. Both are strickly fits in a zone blocking system as of now.
Overall, this might be the best group of tackles in years. Like last year, we might expect a massive run on tackles by teams where a 2nd rounder like Duane Brown gets snagged by the Texicans in the first round. Similar things will happen this year.
1) Jason Smith /Baylor / Top 5
2) Eugene Monroe / Virginia / Top 5
3) Andre Smith / Alabama / 1st
4) Michael Oher / Ole Miss / 1st
5) William Beatty / Uconn / 1st - 2nd
6) Eben Britton / Arizona / 1st - 2nd
7) Jamon Meredith / South Carolina / 2nd
8) Phil Loadholt / Oklahoma / 2nd
9) Alex Boone / Ohio State / 3rd
10) Fenuki Tupou / Oregon / 3rd
11) Troy Kropog / Tulane / 3rd