NFL Draft Position Rankings 1.0: Offensive Tackles
By Jim Johnson
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Ranking the ACC, SEC, Sun Belt, and SoCon 2017 NFL Draft prospects.
The 2017 NFL Draft is just a couple of months away and, as always, the bulk of the top talent is coming out of our coverage area -- the ACC and SEC (with some Sun Belt and SoCon players as well) -- so I will be releasing fluid position rankings throughout the run-up to April 27th. This ranking only includes players from teams that we cover, meaning some of the major players from the other conferences will not be included. Curiously, the rankings wouldn't look much different even if they were, though.
1. Cam Robinson, Alabama
Beautiful, prototypical frame. Athletic, strong -- excellent against power rushers. Quick enough off the line to handle speed rushers. Balance issues. Bites on twists, allowing outside man to get up field. Will almost certainly be a good NFL player, but difficult to overcome deficiencies may keep him from being great.
2. Antonio Garcia, Troy
Super athlete that's flown under the radar his entire life. Elite kick slide agility and lateral movement. Keeps defender in front of him, almost never beaten around the edge by speed rushers. Never carries a 300+ pound playing weight, and his frame may not be able to sustain that. Will have a hard time against NFL caliber power rushers. Athleticism is enticing, but strength concerns could keep him off the field at first.
3. Adam Bisnowaty, Pittsburgh
A big mauler that plays angry. Already has some NFL habits with the way he passes off assignments. Great initial punch. Very good in confined spaces with his power, but struggles in space and against speed rushers. Injury history could see him slip on some boards.
4. Roderick Johnson, Florida State
Physical specimen, perfect frame. Super long arms, deliver powerful punch. Leaner, plays off balance. Above average run blocker. High ceiling in pass protection, if he can fix some technique issues.
5. Will Holden, Vanderbilt
Great drive blocker, an asset in the running game. Excellent fundamental player, technically sound. Not very light on his feet, lack of speed in his kick slides. Short arms are not ideal, but his obsessive attention to detail will endear him to coaches.
6. David Sharpe, Florida
A freakishly large human being. Big, well-proportioned body accompanied by telephone pole arms. Can't be bull rushed. Pulls well, given his size. Very stiff. Lacks quickness. Likely looking at a move to guard, although it depends where he goes.
7. Jermaine Eluemunor, Texas A&M
A transplant from the UK, in high school, still learning the position. High ceiling. Good feet in pass protection. Plays strong. Fairly short arms. Still has a long way to go, as far as improving his instincts and understanding of the game, but that's to be expected. Starter potential.
8. Dan Skipper, Arkansas
The first thing that stands out about Skipper is the height. More athletic, than one would expect a 6'10", 320 pound offensive lineman to be. Solid run blocker. Height does lead to some leverage problems. The size is hard to ignore, both the pros and the cons.
9. Jemar Clark, Arkansas State
Protypical size for the postion. One of only two players to earn first team All-Sun Belt honors in 2015 and 2016. May be looking at a move to the right side of the line in the NFL.
10. Justin Senior, Mississippi State
Strong, with long arms, a well-timed punch, and solid instincts. Sufficient body control. Needs to improve his footwork. Three years of experience against SEC defensive ends should make him comfortable at his right tackle spot.