NEWS AND INFORMATION ON THE NFL DRAFT
2015 DRAFT PREVIEW: OFFENSIVE LINE
OT Overview: There is still a considerable amount of sorting out to do before this spring's draft, but it certainly appears that it could be yet another banner at OT. There is a better than even chance, for example, that at last one tackle will be selected within the top 10 picks for the ninth straight year. In fact, there is a better than even chance that there will be multiple top 10 picks at the position this year for the third straight season and 6th time in the past 9 years. At the top of the positional board, Cedric Ogbuehi of Texas A&M, Cameron Erving of Florida State, Iowa's Brandon Scherff and La'el Collins of LSU were all expected to enter the 2014 where each was projected to be at least a first-round prospect, but all four ultimately opted to return to class for one more year in hopes of raising their grade into that top 10 category. Ogbuehi, for example, is a better overall athlete than former teammate Jake Matthews, the 6th player picked this past May whom he will replace at LT for the Aggies this fall. For his part, the Hawkeyes' Scherff is a little ragged around the edges, but he's a huge guy with freakish strength and athleticism, while LSU's Collins is rugged run blocker who could ultimately play inside at the next level, but also has the long arms, light feet and surprising agility of a prototype LT. Meanwhile, FSU's Erving, who has played only one year at LT after converting from DT may have the most upside of the bunch. In the end, though, the top OT prospect this year may end up being Stanford junior Andrus Peat, who hasn't received as much national ink to date, but who also has remarkable size and strength, along with excellent agility and a nasty disposition. Let the games begin!
As well there are some other second-tier senior OTs this year with atleast top 100 potential including 6-7, 35-pound Corey Robinson of South Carolina, along with Sean Hickey of Syracuse, Cincinnati's Eric Lefeld, Daryl Williams and Tyrus Thompson of Oklahoma, Rob Havenstein of Wisconsin and Oregon's Jake Fisher. The sleeper in this group may be unherladed Ty Sambrailo of Colorado State, just maybe the best prospect in the country nobody has heard of!
The real story about OT depth this year, though, may be told primarily by how many top underclassmen at the position ultimately declare for the upcoming draft. In fact, there is a small army of good, solid, although not yet elite junior OT prospects this including Spencer Drango of Baylor, D.J. Humpries of Florida, Le'Raven Clark of Texas Tech, Brandon Shell of South Carolina, Donovan Smith of Penn State, Miami's Ereck Flowers, Jason Spriggs of Indiana, Taylor Decker of Ohio State, Tyler Marz of Wisconsin and Georgia's John Theus. And redshirt freshmen Jake Conklin of Michigan State, LSU's Jerald Hawkins, Ronny Stanley of Notre Dame and Germain Ifedi of Texas A&M could make it a real party. However, the NFL will definitely have to wait a couple more years to get a shot at Ole Miss true sophomore LT Laremy Tunsil who could be the best young player at the position in the country.
Top 20 OT Prospects
OG Overview: It also looks like it could be a slightly better than average year at OG with at least a couple of prospects at the position likely to get at least some first-round consideration in Tre Jackson of Florida State and South Carolina's A.J. Cann. Jackson is a wide-body road-grader who is a dominating drive blocker with some short-area quickness. For his part, the emerging Cann isn't as big or physical as Jackson, but he's a better athlete and more polished technician and in fact is considered a better prospect by more than one scout. Meanwhile, there are some accomplished later second-day candidates at the position including Jackson's FSU teammate Josue Matias and Alabama's Arie Kouandjio, the brother of Cyrus Kouandjio who was considered to be a near-elite OT prospect last year, before a balky knee bumped him into the second round where he was selected by Buffalo. That second-day second-tier group would aso get a boost if junior OGs Vadal Alexander of LSU and/or Landen Turner of North Carolina opt to enter the 2015 draft. Even without much input from underclassmen, there is some impressive depth at OG including the Miami pair of Jon Feliciano and Malcolm Bunche, 345-pound Quinton Spain, Aundray Walker of USC, underrated Laken Tomlinson of Duke, John Miller of Louisville and Notre Dame's Christian Lombard among others. Bottom line is that there could be potentially useful options at OG come next April/May well into the third day of the draft
Top 20 OG Prospects
C Overview: It also looks like it could be at least an interesting year at C which has never been a premum position on draft day and won't again in 2015. Indeed, the odds are stacked against a C being selected in the opening round, although veteran pivots Hroniss Grasu of Oregon and Reese Dismukes are both solid technicians with good quickness who should get some serious mid-second day consideration this coming May. And there could be a third C in that race to be the first guy off the board next spring if a) Oregon State junior Isaac Seumalo opts to enter the draft and b) he's healthy after needing a second surgery to repair a foot injury suffered late last season. In fact, just how deep the C class is at the 2015 draft could be detremined by just how many juniors at the position turn pro this winter. The list of other junior Cs who would get at least some late-round interest from pro teams if they were in the upcoming draft includes Max Tuerk of Southern California, Ryan Kelly of Alabama, Mike Matthews of Texas A&M, Nick Martin of Notre Dame, Austin Blythe of Iowa, UCLA's Jake Brendle, Jack Allen of Michigan State, Evan Boehm of Missouri and Temple's Kyle Friend. Meanwhile, other seniors to watch include B.J. Finney of Kansas State, Jake Smith of Louisville, Brandon Vitable of Northwestern and Georgia's David Andrews, although none is likely to be selected much before the later rounds.
Top 10 C Prospects
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