This year’s class of offensive lineman is underwhelming to say the least, and it does not contain premium talent. If your team is in need of a major upgrade on the line, this is not the class to be looking at. With very few names in the conversation for the first round, this group, like the quarterbacks, is not as talented as the rest of the positions in the draft.
5. Dion Dawkins, Temple: Scouts seem to be divided on Dawkins and his fit in the NFL. While at Temple, he’s always been a tackle and flashed the athleticism to go against speed edge rushers and he has the footwork to keep people from getting to the outside. Many scouts also believe that his speed would fit best at guard and he could be utilized effectively on pulls and keep the interior safe during the pass. He’s also a little small compared to the other tackles this year, which may be cause for some of the concern. Depending on how the first round plays out, Dawkins could make his way into the late second, but he’ll most likely go somewhere in the 3rd or 4th rounds
4. Taylor Morton, Western Michigan: At 6’5” 330 lbs. and having played both guard and tackle in college ,Morton has the size and versatility that NFL teams will be looking for. Playing at Western Michigan, Morton has become a very good pass blocker, and that is what teams will covet when thinking about selecting him. He’ll fit better at guard to start his career, but sliding him to right tackle after a couple of years will be the best fit for him once he gets used to the speed of an NFL game.
3. Garett Bolles, Utah: Bolles will be a 25-year-old rookie with only one year of film at the Division 1 level. The former juco product struggles against speed rushers, but he has strong hands and blows holes open in the run game. He played left tackle while at Utah, but could move to the right if his pass protection is a serious problem to start. Bolles should make his way into the first based off of lack of talent at the position and will most likely have a starting spot Week 1
2. Cam Robinson, Alabama: Robinson is considered the top tackle in the draft by most and is a first round-caliber player. I like him more at right tackle than left though, and that’s why I have him at number 2. Robinson has good size and speed and shows good form during most plays. His biggest issue is he’ll let speed rushers get by him too easily, and on film, it looks like effort is the problem more than anything else. He’s also not the most physical at the point of attack, but his skill makes up for it. Robinson will be one the first 2 tackles off the board and could become a good starter, but I don’t see him becoming anything special.
1. Ryan Ramcyzk, Wisconsin: Ramcyzk is my favorite tackle this year and I think he has the tools to be a high-end starter. He’s extremely quick out of his stance and normally makes first contact. He also opens up big holes in the run game and makes second level blocks consistently. He does a great job against speed rushers and works in space well shuffling defenders around. His biggest concern is taking on power rushers, as he’s struggled against the bull rush at times, but that can cleared up with strength training.
5. Pat Elfien, Ohio State: Elfien is a great run blocker that seals off defenders and can blow holes wide open. He moves quick and finds second level blocks early. He’s a solid pass blocker, but doesn’t have to best footwork. A lot of expect him to move to center at the next level, which would make his pass blocking skills less of a concern and give him a better chance to find his way into a starting lineup early.
4. Jordan Morgan, Kutztown: If you haven’t hear this name before, I don’t blame you ,seeing that Kutztown is a Division 2 school. Morgan was rated as a 6th or 7th rounder before the Senior Bowl, but since then, he’s been projected as high as an early third rounder. He has the size and speed to play at the next level and his footwork looks good. Talent isn’t the concern with him, but where he’s at in his development could be coming from a lower level of both competition and coaching.
3. Dan Feeny, Indiana: Feeny struggled with injuries this past season, just like most of his teammates at Indiana, which caused him to play some tackle this season. This switch showed his deficiencies as a pass blocker and proved that Feeny is a guard at the next level. He’s a very strong run blocker and could help a team that needs to create bigger holes on the interior of the line, but do not expect anything overly impressive from him.
2. Ethan Pocic, LSU: Pocic is the best center in the draft, but can also play either guard position. He has great footwork and gets great leverage in both the run and pass game. He’s not overly skilled in any one area, but has no real weaknesses. He gives teams a player that can play 3 positions along the line, and in my opinion has the highest potential, of this year’s group of offensive lineman.
1. Forrest Lamp, Western Kentucky: First round name, first round talent. Lamp played tackle his whole career in college, but doesn’t have the size or length to do so in the NFL. He will become an extremely skilled guard now, though, and before getting hurt at a Senior Bowl practice he was making the transition with zero problems. He’s comfortable on both sides, but will be more helpful on the left side. Lamp should come off the board in the first round and be starting Week 1 next season