Great tackles are becoming almost as coveted as quarterbacks in pro offenses. Which college players have a chance to reach that pinnacle in the 2015 NFL draft?
Cedric Ogbuehi – Texas A&M
The Aggie factory is in high gear of late. As if churning out two top ten picks in the previous two drafts in Luke Joeckel and Jake Matthews, A&M may have another one brewing with Cedric Ogbuehi. The scary part? Many scouts believe he might be the best yet from a physical standpoint. He was a superb pass protector in 2013 and improved considerably in run blocking as well. If he can excel at left tackle in place of Matthews, his placement in the 2015 NFL draft is secure.
Cameron Erving – Florida State
His quarterback won the Heisman trophy and he won the national championship. Nobody would’ve faulted Cameron Erving for leave for the pros at that point. Almost every outlet saw him as a 1st round pick. His size and athleticism were on display constantly but he did suffer from consistency issues, which explains his choice to return to school. Another year will only help his development.
La’el Collins – LSU
Like any LSU offensive lineman, La’el Collins is well schooled in the art of run blocking. However, it was his pass protection at left tackle last season that really generated a lot of buzz. He played well against top teams and never seemed out of place against the best. Some will say his weight and limited speed might compel a move to guard, but Collins has shown enough to warrant staying at tackle, particularly the right side if he enters the 2015 NFL draft.
Brandon Scherff – Iowa
It wasn’t until late in the process that scouts began to see the quality of Brandon Scherff come through. The Iowa tackle possesses the footwork and agility desired in pass protection and boasts the size and power to open running lanes. He’s scheme versatile, able to block zone and power-man. Another year of productivity and no injuries should bump him into the 1st round conversations.
Andrus Peat – Stanford
Stanford has become a solid go-to program for stout offensive linemen of late, which may explain their success. Though still very young, Andrus Peat flashed what he could do for the Cardinal in 2013. At 6’7″, 312 lbs he has ideal size to play tackle and he showed a good combination of leg drive and footwork last season. He still needs polish, but if he progresses as expected he has “franchise left tackle” written all over him.