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2024 NFL Draft prospect profile: Troy Fautanu, OL, Washington

Where would Fautanu play in the NFL?

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: JAN 08 CFP National Championship - Michigan vs Washington Photo by Joe Robbins/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The New York Giants have questions all over their offensive line. Not only do they have the persistent question at right tackle, but they also have questions at both guard positions.

One possible solution for them could be to find linemen with the versatility to play several different positions along the offensive line and start their five best players. That option could also give the Giants some badly-needed depth.

If so, Washington offensive tackle Troy Fautanu could be a good option for the Giants. He has been a very good tackle for the Washington Huskies, but his frame might force a move inside at the next level.

What might he bring to an offensive line in the NFL?

Prospect: Troy Fautanu (55)
Games Watched: vs. Oregon (2023), vs. USC (2023), vs. Utah (2023), vs. Oregon State (2023)

Measurables

Height: 6-foot-4
Weight: 320 pounds

Strengths

  • Athleticism
  • Technique
  • Football IQ
  • Competitive toughness
  • Versatility

Fautanu is a smart, athletic, versatile and tough offensive line prospect. Fautanu has played in 41 games for the Huskies, the majority of which have been at left tackle. He’s short for an NFL tackle, but he has very quick and light feet which give him great movement skills.

He’s an easy mover who can mirror athletic speed rushers off the edge, as well as quickly redirect inside to deal with B-gap blitzers or edge defenders who take inside routes into the backfield. He also has an innate understanding of leverage and positioning. He does a good job of maintaining his own hip and pad level while moving laterally, and also understands how to use inside or half-man leverage to torque defenders out of position. Fautanu also understands how to use his hands to defeat blockers who attempt to get under his pads. Those attempts frequently end with the defender on the ground and Fautanu looking for other defenders to block. He’s constantly looking for work as a rule, as well as for opportunities to pancake defenders.

His athleticism makes him a dynamic run blocker who’s well-suited to zone blocking schemes. Fautanu is also a very capable pulling blocker, as well as a great blocker on screen plays.

While most of Fautanu’s experience is at left tackle, he does have experience inside at left guard. His blend of competitiveness, athleticism, leverage and football IQ should allow him to move inside in the NFL should his future team desire.

Weaknesses

  • Length
  • Anchor

If Fautanu needs to change positions at the NFL level, it won’t be because of his athletic ability or movement skills. However, he may come in below teams’ thresholds for length at the offensive tackle position.

Fautanu struggled when defenders were able to get their hands on him first, gain access to his chest plate, or keep him from getting his hands on them. The NFL has long prized long-limbed defenders and rushers with polished technique could be a problem for Fautanu.

Fautanu also wouldn’t be described as a “stout” blocker. He relies on his footwork to deal with power rushers, as opposed to pure play strength. He was able to chop his feet, blunt their rushes, and disperse their power. And while that was generally effective in college, he might need to get stronger at the NFL level.

Game Tape

Projection

Fautanu projects as a starting offensive lineman at the NFL level, though where is a lingering question.

He has the movement skills, feet, and technique to compete for a job as an offensive tackle at the next level. However, he might not have the requisite length to deal with NFL caliber edge defenders. On the flip side, he might struggle with NFL defensive tackles’ strength – at least at first.

Considering how well he played the position at the NFL level, Fautanu should at least be given the opportunity to compete at offensive tackle. However, whatever team drafts him should have a plan to move him inside if his frame proves to be an issue. He would likely be one of the most athletic guards in the NFL, and he certainly has the mentality for the interior. Teams might even consider looking at him as a convert to center, given his football IQ and overall athleticism.

Does he fit the Giants?
Yes. He could compete for a number of positions on the Giants’ offensive line.

Final Word: A high second-round pick or fringe first-rounder