CFN 2017 NFL Draft Analysis & Rankings: Offensive Tackles

CFN 2017 NFL Draft Analysis & Rankings: Offensive Tackles

2017 NFL Draft

CFN 2017 NFL Draft Analysis & Rankings: Offensive Tackles


CFN 2017 NFL Draft Analysis & Rankings: Offensive Tackles

From the college football perspective, who are the top offensive tackles in the 2017 NFL Draft?

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Ehhhh, it’s okay. Not great.

The main men up top have Pro Bowl, franchise-left tackle upside, but after that there are way too many projections and fliers. It’s not a particularly deep class, and there could be a whole slew of way-too-easy early cuts to go along with the projections.

If you need a tackle, invest early and you’ll be okay. But even then, the top three guys have some big concerns.

So what’s the college football analysis and take on the 2017 NFL Draft offensive tackle class? Who can play, and who can’t? It’s this simple – who are the ones who matter, and who are the ones who are just guys who’ll make it if someone gets lucky?

After seeing and covering these guys from recruiting until completion, from the college football perspective …

2017 NFL Draft: Offensive Tackles

1. Garrett Bolles, Utah

If you like a pure power tackle, Cam Robinson is it, and there’s no arguing with Ryan Ramczyk’s all-around skill. But in terms of the best blend of athleticism and toughness, Bolles is the one. He’s a bit undersized, but he’s smooth as silk in pass protection with rare movement.

It’ll be nice to see what he can do at around 310, and he could use a little more experience, but 300-pound humans who move like he can are rare. He’s nowhere near a sure thing, but the upside is enormous.

Where He’ll Be Drafted: 1st Round

2. Cam Robinson, Alabama

A massive human being, the guy’s a freakish giant who can move. This is the type of blocker everyone wants to anchor their college program, and he did it at the highest of levels.

While there might be some problems early on against NFL speed rushers, there’s not a better power-hitting tackle in the draft. He’s going to need time as a polished pass protector, but as long as he works for it, there’s consistent Pro Bowl potential.

Where He’ll Be Drafted: 1st Round

3. Ryan Ramczyk, Wisconsin

The next Badger lineman up, he’s got the prototype size, power, and work ethic to be someone’s left tackle for the next several years. More athletic than most Wisconsin blasters, he should grow into an even better pass blocker after getting a little more work. Many will make him the top tackle on the board, but he got beaten up – there aren’t massive durability concerns, but they’re there.

Where He’ll Be Drafted: 1st Round

NFL Draft: Dumb Luck If Any Of These Offensive Tackles Are NFL-Good Starters

4. Taylor Moton, Western Michigan

Guard, tackle, wherever. He’s a brilliant pass protector for a player of his size and bulk. He’ll eat up his guy no matter what and could start right away inside. However, give him a little time and a little refinement, and he might be too good a right tackle to ignore. There aren’t many players in this draft with his functional strength.

Where He’ll Be Drafted: 2nd Round

5. Dion Dawkins, Temple

Bulky, he’s a tough guy run blocker with the versatility to play just about anywhere up front. He’ll have a long career as a guard, but early on, throw him out there at right tackle and let him hit someone. He’s ready to start now, but his athletic limitations will bounce him out of the top 50.

Where He’ll Be Drafted: 2nd Round

6. Roderick Johnson, Florida State

There’s not enough bulk, but he brings the drive for the running game and is impossible to get around as a pass protector. He needs to rely on his feet more than just his pop, but there’s a world of upside. While he’s not going to be a star left tackle right away, give him a little time and work, and he’ll be a mainstay.

Where He’ll Be Drafted: 3rd Round

7. Antonio Garcia, Troy

One of the biggest surprises of the season, Troy’s offense turned into a dominant force. Part of the reason was the great pass protection led by Garcia, a technician of a blocker on the move. He’s a tall, rangy player who’ll have a nightmare of a time getting bigger, but if you’re fine with a finesse guy who’ll always get the job done, here you go.

Where He’ll Be Drafted: 3rd Round

8. David Sharpe, Florida

The type of right tackle who’ll blot out the sun, he’s not for everyone or every style, but as long as you don’t care too much about dancing pass protection, he’ll be a force. Yeah, he played left tackle for the Gators, but no way that happens at the next level without a ton of athleticism on the rest of the line.

Where He’ll Be Drafted: 3rd Round

9. Will Holden, Vanderbilt

While he’s got the pop, and he can crush for the ground game, don’t expect an elite pass protector if thrown on the left side. However, with his experience and power, the 6-7 veteran should be able to hold down a right tackle gig for a long, long time.

Where He’ll Be Drafted: 3rd Round

NFL Draft: Draft Them. Don’t. Whatever.

10. Adam Bisnowaty, Pitt

Seemingly always injured early on, he turned into a killer of a drive blocker late in his career. He’s more of a nasty hitter who gets by on a lot of want-to, but he’s not quite athletic enough, and he’s not quite big enough to be more than a decent starter. There’s not a lot of tread on the tires, though.

Where He’ll Be Drafted: 4th Round

11. Chad Wheeler, USC

One of the most versatile blockers in the draft, the 6-7, 306-pounder can play anywhere up front. Some will project him to work at center, but he’s likely going to be a right tackle considering his frame. Health is the big concern – he couldn’t stay in one piece for the Trojans.

Where He’ll Be Drafted: 6th Round

12. Dan Skipper, Arkansas

He had an interesting career. At 6-10 and 310 pounds, he’s a giant – he’s a kick-blocker extraordinaire – but he also never met a holding call he didn’t like to get nailed for. An athlete, he can move well, but he doesn’t bring a ton of power.

Where He’ll Be Drafted: 5th Round

13. Julie’n Davenport, Bucknell

Obviously, the lack of elite competition is going to be an issue, but at 6-7 and around 320, he’s got the right frame and could be a destructive force as a run blocker. Don’t expect anything fancy in pass protection, but he’ll be tough to get around as a right tackle only.

Where He’ll Be Drafted: 4th Round

14. Collin Buchanan, Miami University

He might end up as a guard, but he’s got the size and the frame to be a starter at right tackle. The versatility and the pass blocking skills will likely make him a mid-round flier who could stick.

Where He’ll Be Drafted: 4th Round

15. Conor McDermott, UCLA

There’s little power, but the 6-8, 307-pounder has a terrific frame and great feet. With his size and athleticism, he could be a great late round get for anyone needing a finesse right tackle. When if comes to run blocking, though … forget it. That’s not a killer – he could be a decent backup.

Where He’ll Be Drafted: 5th Round

16. J.J. Dielman, Utah

A lot of scouts will want him at center – nah. The 6-5, 310-pounder started out his career at tackle before kicking inside. Put him back at right tackle, and he’ll grow into a terrific pass protector with a little bit of time. The one big concern is a foot injury that knocked him out early last year.

Where He’ll Be Drafted: 6th Round


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