Thursday, March 7, 2013

Cream of the 2013 NFL draft crop: Offensive linemen


This is the final edition of an eight-part series noting the top prospects of the 2013 NFL Draft at their respective positions.

THE OFFENSIVE LINE PROSPECTS: Eric Fisher, Luke Joeckel, Chance Warmack, Jonathan Cooper, Lane Johnson, D.J. Fluker. (photo: Jake Enos, Flickr)

Eric Fisher (6-7, 306 lbs.) Central Michigan
Sound pass-protector. Far from a liability as a run-blocker. Beats defensive ends and outside linebackers to the edge. Fabulous combination of size and deceptive power. Projected round: Top 10

Luke Joeckel (6-6, 306 lbs.) Texas A&M
Amazing footwork. A dancing bear on the perimeter of the offensive line. Best pure pass-blocker in the class. Solid technician. Punishing run-blocker. Will get better with more bulk.  Projected round: Top 10

Chance Warmack (6-2, 317 lbs.) Alabama
Absolutely devastating as a run-blocker. Gets the second level with ease, finishes his blocks with immense strength. Anchors well as a pass-blocker. Extremely polished. Projected round: Top 15

Jonathan Cooper (6-2, 311 lbs.) North Carolina
Not as physically imposing as Warmack, but often stuns defenders at the point of attack. Tremendous agility for his size. Chop blocks effectively in space. Uses leverage correctly against pass-rushers. Projected round: 1

Lane Johnson (6-6, 303 lbs.) Oklahoma
Former quarterback. Exudes athleticism. Super quick first step. Utilizes proper footwork. Has surprising strength. With weight lifting and coaching, could be elite. Projected round: 1

D.J. Fluker (6-5, 339 lbs.) Alabama
Massive human. Engulfs most defenders. Has flashes of bad play. Typically dominating. Relatively nimble for his size. Can be a franchise right tackle today. With faster step on backpedal, could play left tackle. Projected round: 1-2

AFC East need meter: (Not pressing, mildly pressing, very pressing)
Bills: Mildly pressing, pending what happens with FA Andy Levitre
Jets: Mildly pressing, pending what happens with FA Brandon Moore
Patriots: Mildly pressing, pending what happens with FA Sebastian Vollmer
Dolphins: Mildly pressing, pending what happens with FA Jake Long

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