After another season with a disappointing performance from the New York Giants’ offensive line, hunt is on once again for help for the much maligned unit.
This year the Giants will be working against circumstances if they want to add talent to their line. First, this is a weak free agent class along the offensive line, which makes finding ready-to-produce help hard to find. Secondly, the offensive line is one of the weaknesses of this draft class, which is so strong in other areas. Both of those could conspire to put the Giants in the unenviable position of potentially needing help, but having prospects over-drafted ahead of them.
Lately they have avoided players with major injury histories, but one help get them a new offensive tackle? Let’s take a look at Wisconsin’s Ryan Ramczyk
- Prototypical size for an NFL offensive tackle at 6’6”, 310 pounds. He also appears to have long arms and carries his weight well.
- Powerful blocker, consistently creates movement at the point of attack, seems to enjoy bullying defenders, and finishes blocks
- Consistently creates holes for the running back
- Solid pass protector who ushers rushers around the pocket when he can’t stone-wall them completely
- Plays well in space, looking for work at the second level
- Blocked in a pro-style offense that features a quarterback under center
- Experience playing out of a three-point stance and a natural knee bender
- Generally features efficient footwork, hand usage, and good use of leverage
- Had surgery to repair a hip injury after Wisconsin’s bowl game. Played through the injury, but will miss the “draft process”. Teams will need to do their homework
- Only one year of major college experience
- Occasionally seems to lose track of athletic defenders after the initial block in pass protection
- Struggles when he is “off schedule” - Doesn’t always anchor in time, or struggles when defenders use “off speed” rushes (don’t immediately explode off the ball)
Does He Fit With The Giants?
Healthy, Ramczyk looks like a great fit for the Giants. Playing through a hip injury -- and playing well -- speaks to his toughness, and working his way up from a Division III school speaks to his work ethic, two important intangibles for the Giants.
Only having one year of major college football makes Ramczyk a bit of a project, but he showed he belonged, suggesting a high floor.
The Giants like big, athletic linemen who play with a nasty streak. The question is whether or not Ramczyk’s injury pushing him down to the Giants at 23rd overall, and will it scare them off as they are trying to put their own lengthy injury history behind them.
Big Board Rankings
Big Blue View - 26th overall
Mocking The Draft - N/A
CBS Sports - 14th overall
Draft Countdown - 36th overall
Draft Tek - 15th overall
There is a lot to like about Ryan Ramczyk, though some of it depends on your perspective. Is his injury a problem or does playing through it show off his mental toughness? Does the fact that he only has one year of major college football make him a risk, or does it illustrate his work ethic? Regardless of your feelings on those potential risks, he does enough well already to suggest a player who can step in and contribute from Day 1, and only get better with more experience and coaching.
On the field for Wisconsin, Ramczyk looks like an NFL tackle. He is a brutish run blocker, which has to interest a team that can’t run the ball, and a solid pass protector. He, of course, has issues that need coaching up, but he doesn’t have some of the issues that plague many college tackles coming out.
The question is if he falls to the Giants, will they have the stomach for his potential risks?