Offensive line is one of the most sought after position in football, especially at the tackle position. Elite prospects almost always warrant a top 10 if not top 5 pick and they can become a cornerstone in franchises. Here are the top 5 offensive tackle prospects for the 2016 NFL draft
- Laremy Tunsil: In my mind he is one of the very few elite prospects in this draft. He has dominated opponents all year, and that has been going on in the SEC. He is a natural left tackle with quick reactions and some of the best footwork in the past couple of years. The only real weakness in his game is that he’ll lose his technique against lesser opponents, but for the most part he does not do anything wrong. He is a top 5 pick and easily has the potential to be a an all pro multiple times throughout his career
- Ronnie Stanley: Stanley has the most potential of all the offensive lineman in the draft. He has long arms and a great fame. His reactions are almost as good as Tunsil’s and he can manhandle opponents. He is raw still working on his hand placement and footwork. He has shown great pass blocking ability. He may struggle when he first arrives in the NFL as he goes against more polished edge rushers but as time goes on he should reach a top tier level.
- Taylor Decker: At 6’7” he has great length to get a hand on even the most outside rushers. He has shown a great ability to stay in front of rushers while pass blocking but he can lose his feet a little at times and let them drive him back. He is a force in the run game though consistently forcing defenders out of lanes and showing the ability to get into the second level to create holes for large gains. He projects as a starter and he could be a very talented one if he can work out his pass blocking troubles.
- Jack Conklin: He is a force in the run game, showing little missteps throughout his career and almost always creating lanes for his backs. His biggest problem is foot work. He has shown a tendency to get his feet tied up and he can struggle with stunts along the defensive line. I believe he is mid level starter but some scouts have raved over the potential he has shown due to his knowledge of the game
- Germain Ifedi: A great run blocker with the best reach in the class. He has shown the ability to play left and right tackle and his versatility could force him into the bottom of the first round. His biggest problem is he draws to many holding penalties, especially at left tackle since he’s still working on his hand placement. If he can overcome that he can become a quality starter at either tackle position.