The 2019 NFL Scouting Combine is fast approaching, and with it the next phase of the draft process.
NFL teams, and the rest of us, will use the data from the Combine to fine-tune our big boards and adjust scouting reports. And with the New York Giants continuing need for offensive linemen, both on the interior and at right tackle, these players will be getting close looks for the remainder of the process.
As it stands now, this appears to be a strong offensive tackle class, with players who should be able to start quickly and players for any blocking scheme a team wants to run.
Here at Big Blue View, we aren’t quite ready to publish a true “big board.” However, I can put out my current feelings on the top players at each position, as well as some honorable mentions for later in the draft.
The top 5
- Jonah Williams (Alabama)
- Jawaan Taylor (Florida) [Prospect Profile]
- Cody Ford (Oklahoma)
- David Edwards (Wisconsin) [Prospect Profile]
- Yodny Cajuste (West Virginia) [Prospect Profile]
Notes: This could change, but Williams remains my top OT prospect. He isn’t perfect, and there will be plenty who will look at his measurements and say that he is a guard at the next level. Personally, I see him as a technician with experience on both ends of the line and plenty of great coaching in NFL blocking concepts. Williams might not be the behemoth that some of the other guys on the list are, but with his technique and leverage, he finishes his fair share of reps with the defender on the ground. He might ultimately land at guard, but I would give him the chance to play offensive tackle first.
Taylor and Ford might be interchangeable at the second and third spots, and they’re very similar prospects as well. Both are big physical right tackles (though Ford was a guard up until 2018) with exceptional movement skills. I have Taylor a bit higher because of Ford’s issues with pad level, but that could change based on how the two perform in the field drills.
Cajuste is a solid all-around left tackle prospect, but I have Edwards a bit higher because of his experience on the Wisconsin offensive line and higher upside. He is still just scratching the surface of his potential as an offensive tackle and has a great foundation thanks to Wisconsin’s coaching. If he can continue to build on that foundation, some team is going to get a really good player.
Greg Little (Ole Miss) - Little just missed the top five because I feel Cajuste is a bit more pro-ready. He has all the tools, but is lacking in consistency. If the Giants are in the market for a right tackle in the second round and Little is available, he could be a good pick. However, they should go in with the knowledge that there very well could need patience with regards to his development early in his career. [Prospect Profile]
Andre Dillard (Washington State) - Dillard has some of the best movement skills in this class. He is remarkably athletic and smooth, but he will need to learn how to use a kick-slide in pass protection at the NFL level. His awkward shuffle will get picked apart by any NFL EDGE worth his salt. That being said, the tools are there if he lands with a good offensive line coach. [Prospect Profile]
Tyree St. Louis (Miami) - Assuming the Giants address their right tackle position in free agency, they will still want to look for depth and developmental tackle prospects for the future. St.Louis has the tools to succeed and might just need some technique polishing to emerge as a potential starter. [Prospect Profile]
Olisaemeka Udoh (Elon) - Oli Udoh has already made waves this draft season. An unknown from a small school when the process started, Udoh got everyone’s attention at the East West Shrine Game weigh-ins. He kept their attention with a strong week of practice, earned his way to the Senior Bowl, and acquitted himself well despite the jumps in competition. A big, tall, long, and athletic right tackle prospect, Udoh has the tools that sets scouts to drooling. Coming from a small school, it’s easy to see him slipping, but given those physical tools and a strong draft process, teams might also take him earlier than expected.