6’5” – 291 lbs. – 5.25e
Missed 2011 with an injury, then started four games at left tackle in 2012 before moving to the right side upon Justin Pugh’s return. Started all thirteen games at left tackle in 2013. Has a fairly thick build; should arrive at the Combine weighing a bit more than the figure listed by Syracuse’s athletic site. However, arm length may be a bit shorter than his desirable for the position. A hard worker who plays through the whistle and, when combined with his adequate athleticism, has the range to secure blocks out at the second level in the run game, although he is not consistent in terms of getting his hands on second-level defenders. Will fall off of some blocks in the run game because he bends at the waist and possesses below-average grip strength, but is generally able to turn defenders out of the hole before doing so. Needs to do a better job of keeping his head up into contact on a consistent basis to prevent defenders from crossing his face. Not a dominant drive-blocker, but keeps his feet churning and can create a bit of push, especially when down-blocking and attacking a defensive tackle’s outside shoulder. Has experience executing inside pulls and cut blocks and therefore makes the most sense as a zone blocker, where his athleticism would be highlighted and his inability to dominate defenders at the point of attack would be masked. As a pass protector, gets good arm extension and is capable of sticking with his man through multiple moves, but doesn’t cover as much ground in his kickslide as would be suggested by his athleticism. Consequently, looks much more comfortable when he is afforded the opportunity to delegate the outermost rusher to a tight end or back, which allows him to anchor against an interior rusher instead. Mentally, seems to have a pretty good grasp of who he should be blocking when defenses bring extra rushers. Quality of anchor is dependent on initial positioning; can be ragdolled around when he is caught of position, but is capable of withstanding a defender’s bull rush when he beats his man to the spot. Prior experience playing in a pro-style, run-heavy offense under head coach Doug Marrone prior to Marrone’s departure to join the Buffalo Bills in the same capacity should help him convince teams that he’s one of the more pro-ready linemen in the draft, although it’s debatable whether or not he’ll be able to stick outside at the next level. Wouldn’t generate the type of push that top guards do, but wouldn’t have to answer questions about whether he is long and athletic enough to mirror pro speed rushers on the outside.
Games watched: Minnesota (’13), Northwestern (’13), Penn St. (’13)