There is the feeling that the 2018 NFL Draft is somewhat bereft, or at least disappointing, when it comes to offensive line talent. Part of that is likely because the best player (far and away) is an offensive guard, rather than an athletic left tackle who can be hyped up over the draft process.
However, the this year’s line class is not nearly as shallow as the 2017 draft class was. There are several talented prospects and some solid depth at every position on the offensive line.
That is good news for the New York Giants, who will undoubtedly be looking to the draft to add talent to their line. Should the value be right, Notre Dame has not only produced the best lineman (and potentially best player) in the draft, but they have also produced one of the class’ best offensive tackles in Mike McGlinchey.
- Good length. “Looks” like an NFL offensive tackle.
- Is a natural knee bender and generally plays with proper leverage and pad level.
- Efficient footwork.
- Generally solid hands. Tries to get inside defenders’ shoulders.
- Establishes a wide base to deal with power.
- Capable of driving defenders backward on man-gap scheme runs.
- Has played right and left tackle positions.
- Played in a Pro Style offense.
- Shows a solid understanding of angles.
- Doesn’t possess elite foot speed.
- Is vulnerable to speed around the edge.
- Height could compromise pad level if/when fatigue sets in.
- Occasionally lets his hands get wide when dealing with speed.
What they’re saying
“Notre Dame will even tell you that McGlinchey is better on the right side than the left side. He’s just more comfortable and consistent there so that’s probably where you play him. I think everyone tries to beat him up too much. He’s going to play in our league and be a decent starter.” - - AFC team personnel executive
Does He Fit The Giants?
As of this writing there is some disagreement over where McGlinchey will be drafted. Some believe that he is a first-round prospect while others think that his lower ceiling means that he will fall to the second round.
Personally, I think that his high floor and experience in a Pro Style offense make him an early starter, and considering how starved the NFL is for quality (or even competent) offensive line play, I’d be surprised if he lasted 32 picks. McGlinchey is versatile in the run game, with enough athleticism to play in zone schemes and the strength to play in man-gap schemes. There will also be plenty of argument regarding which side (left or right tackle) he should play, but I stopped discriminating a while ago -- Either you can play offensive tackle in the NFL, or you can’t. Defenses are putting their best rushers wherever they can have the most impact and both left and right tackles need to be (at least) competent pass protectors. Though he occasionally struggles with speed (most linemen do), McGlinchey is more than competent. Even if he isn’t the smoothest athlete in the tackle class, his smart, efficient movements make up for the difference.
For the Giants, his hard-nosed game and obvious talent would definitely be a step in the right direction, while his versatility would let them slot him in wherever he would help the most.