OC JAMES STONE, TENNESSEE

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6’3” – 291 lbs. – 5.30e

STATISTICAL PROFILE:

2010: 12 GP / 8 GS (5 OC/3 LG)
2011: 9 GP / 7 GS (OC)
2012: 12 GP / 12 GS
2013: 12 GP / 12 GS (11 OC/1 LG)

OVERVIEW:

Started eight of twelve games played in 2010, originally working as a left guard but eventually converting to center, the position he played for the rest of his career, aside from one games in 2013. Started seven of nine games in 2011, then all twelve in each of the two following seasons.

POSITIVES:

•    Will be graduating having started for most of the past four seasons at a major program.
•    Height is consistent with pro centers; weighed significantly more (307) at Shrine Game.
•    Versatility between center and guard will help stock for teams seeking swing reserves.
•    Handles power well, demonstrates a sound anchor when asked to protect the passer.
•    Pretty good arm extension, especially as pass blocker, keeps defenders out of pads.
•    Adequate lateral agility, shuffle looks technically sound, can mirror opposing tackles.
•    Has been asked to pull for screens on occasion, does an adequate job in that role.
•    Makes up for his lack of dominant plays with consistency; usually gets the job done.

NEGATIVES:

•    Overall strength, athleticism are both mediocre, doesn’t have a clear-cut scheme fit.
•    Not particularly mobile for his size, may be better off playing at his Shrine Game weight.
•    Certainly not a mauler, is considered successful when he walls off/seals on run plays.
•    Doesn’t have the greatest grip strength, average ability to sustain blocks in run game.
•    Struggles to secure blocks at the second level, can get there but often overruns target.
•    Uses different hands for his regular and shotgun snaps, unorthodox to say the least.

OVERVIEW:

Stone played in Tennessee’s offensive system, which favors man/inline blocking concepts, but his official height and weight seem to suggest a zone-blocking candidate. In fact, while he doesn’t have the requisite mobility for the latter system, that he weighed in well over 300 pounds at the East-West Shrine Game should help reassure power blocking schemes that he is big enough to hold up in their system, especially when considered alongside his play in Tennessee’s. Stone should be considered something of a jack-of-all-trades, master-of-none as a prospect: he anchors well in pass protection and is capable of sealing holes in the run game; however, he isn’t particularly mobile, and, perhaps more concerning, doesn’t get great push in the run game. Stone’s extensive starting experience and overall reliability in the SEC should earn him late-round consideration as a developmental backup center or swing reserve.

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