We have debated, and debated, and debated the merits of Notre Dame offensive lineman Zack Martin and Michigan offensive tackle Taylor Lewan. With the 2014 NFL Draft approaching rapidly, let's not do it again. Let's instead use today's position preview to look at offensive linemen who might be available to the Giants on the second and third days of the draft.
Here are some of the offensive tackles you should be aware of heading into the draft.
Joel Bitonio, Nevada -- There is some thought that Bitonio, a bit like Zack Martin, could play tackle in the NFL but might be better at guard. CBS Sports, in fact, lists Bitonio as a guard. He is No. 60 on the Big Blue View Big Board.
Ju'Waun James, Tennessee -- Mocking The Draft thinks James is better than Richardson, his college teammate. James is ranked No. 94 on our Big Board.
By most accounts there are only two pure centers in this draft who project as sure-fire NFL starters -- Weston Richburg [Prospect Profile] of Colorado State and Marcus Martin [Prospect Profile] of USC. While both of these players carry late-Day 2 or early Day 3 grades from most analysts, team needs at the position might result in both players coming off the board earlier than their prospect rankings might indicate.
On the Big Blue View Big Board, Richburg is No. 56 and Martin in No. 63. You also recall that I selected Richburg for the Giants at No. 43 in the Big Blue View Community Mock Draft.
In ranking centers in the 2014 NFL Draft class, SB Nation's Mocking The Draft says "both players should be able to step in immediately and contribute to a starting group.