It seems these two guys occupy our draft wish list at #8. They both can help, but which one should we get? First off, I want YOU GUYS to consider how good the people on our OL are at the moment. I'll make my opinion afterwards.
Anyways, lets jump right in!
Mike Iupati(NOT LUPATI!)
6'5" 331 lbs.
College: Idaho, can play both center and guard, but built more like a guard.
When I look at Guards/Centers, I look at, awareness, pop, strength and maneuverability against the DL, footwork, and reaction time. Oh, and also intangibles on and off the field.
Awareness- Half way through the highlights/lowlights vid, I saw a consistency of above average awareness. He seems like he diagnoses on his guy, and immediately pops up, grips him inside the shoulder pads, and use his strength to take him out of the game. I'll discuss his strength, maneuverability, and what not next. Also, He does a good job diagnosing which player to block to open holes for the runner. This is all as a guard by the way. Also I think he needs to work on his pass protection more, as I'll get into next. But yes, I give his awareness an A.
Strength, Maneuverability, (I'll include "pop" on this one as well)etc- He has great strength. Nuff said. He has good leverage, but I seen that he uses his legs a lot to drive defenders back. face to face, Iupati would win the battle it looks, however, I think he might have one problem... people who are quick. Iupati has above average pop, but those quick guys who can cut blocks well, might be hard for Iupati to contain guys like that. Notice on the vid(which I'll post later) at around 2:25, how Iupati was trying to use his strength while being anchored to the ground. The guy he faced was just using Iupati's strength against him, and just went off to the side with better footwork than Iupati, and used his speed to finish the job(as well as some strength of his own). It also shows up on 2:35. It just kind of concerns me, but I don't know the player he faced also.
He needs to develop more "fluid hips" if he is to keep quick guys contained as well. Sometimes guards have o move on the outside, and they need to be able to stop a quick blitzing player. This is just something he need to work on, but since we should be a running team next year, he might not "need" to show that much fliudity(is that even a word?), but it certainly helps a lot in any given situation. I think this falls into footwork, so that leaves out a spot for me. :)
He has above average pop. His snaps behind center may have been a huge contribution to that. He immediately hits a player(not actually hit him obviously), and uses his strength to keep him out of a play(although like I said about quick DL... something to work on.). He gets a B+ in this one.
Reaction Time- Like I said, since he is also a center, he has developed a good of amount of reaction time. I think I pretty much covered this, but just to point out... he immediately attacks the player, but as long as he is facing DTs, and not speedy ends, I think he'll be all set. Just need to clarify though, as long as he doesn't face ends off the line he should be all set, since I think he'll be fine if he is beyond the line somewhat making some blocks here and there to make a play even bigger. Also, taking on a pass rushing end might need some help for him. But we'll just have to see. Grade... A-(for reaction time).
Intangibles- He is a very hard worker, on and off the field. He is a presence on the OL, that players can rally around(first he has to prove himself though).
Overall grade... A-. Pro potential... does anyone know an guards in the nfl that are strong, and can play like a guard? lol maybe Stephen Neal? Or Mankins??? I forget which resembles Iupati more... Anyways, here's the vid I used: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a1I9VDf1bFI
6'5" 315 lbs.
College: Oklahoma, played RT and LT. Heard he has the potential to play guard as well.
When I look at an OT, I basically think the same things as guard: Awareness, quickness off the snap(or "pop." Also fitting in reaction time.), footwork, strength, and Intangibles.
Awareness- So far, he looks above average as well in this category. He did miss that one blitz in that game he missed a defender who went by and ended Sam Bradford's season. But after that hit in the vid, the guy who put the vid together put on a different team. he has good awareness. When a blitz comes, he sticks with the outside pass rusher, or "stick with what he's supposed to do at tackle" which is to secure the edge. I grade this a... B(more of a B than a B+, but still it was hard for me to make).
Quickness- He has average-above average quickness. Since he is a tackle, you have to be quick, and he so happens top be a great OT in the draft. BUT, when facing a speed rusher, it looks like he "throws" his body at the defender, which is not good, and because of that, he seems like he'll get blown away by a speed rusher off the edge. He sticks with his man, and 89% of the time he does a great job. I give this... a B+.
Footwork- He has above average footwork. When he locks on to a guy, good luck getting past him. Although speed rushers may be a problem for him, he'll mostly be all set. He looks light on his feet, while being a wall in front of a defender. His tall, and wide frame make it hard for most guys to get past him. So I give this a... A.
Strength- He has average strength for an OT. He's not weak, but he is not super strong either. He is better at pass blocking, he just needs to be quicker off the snap so he can immediately get to a pass rushing defender(the pass rushing defender that I'm talking about are like Elvis Dumerville like), and do his thing. He can run block as well, but I see him steering the guy out of the way, and not "exactly" use brute strength. But he has a good combination of both, and probably can help in the running game, and definitely help in the passing game.
*On an interesting note, he should be better at RT, since pass rushers are mostly on the left side. OR I don't know if Mario Henderson should be switched to RT, and Trent to go left(assuming he's who we get), but which ever position gives us a better advantage.
Intangibles- I'll just give you a "quote"(haha) from nfldraftscout. Because I think they may have an accurate description of his intangibles: "Intangibles: Unselfish player who works hard on the field and in practice. Plays through minor injuries. Returned to school despite being a probable second-round pick in order to return to the BCS championship and complete his education."
And as a side note, I only use this site to see who's projected at what, and I get their height, weight, college, and what positions they played in.
Here's the vid I used: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-icEPTOeKhk
Verdict: My grade is a B+. He has some things to work on that a Tackle needs, but is average-above average woth them, but not "great." Pro Potential: I can honestly see him as a Matt Light from my very own pats(or patsies if you want).
This is very weird, I have pro potentials for guys on the pats team... But if you guys want to compare them to anyone, just let me know.
If I am wrong about any one of these players about any category, or what not, please let me know so I can learn more about them. I have no shame in being wrong. I would personally pick... um... I think Iupati, but we should trade down to get him. But at 8, right there at 8, Trent Williams because he has more value there in terms of where the draft picks are.
PLEASE! I NEED AS MANY PICKS IN THE DRAFT POLL AS POSSIBLE! THIS IS ALSO FOR MY REPRESENTATION OF THE RAIDERS AT PATS PULPIT!!! also, debates are helpful of who should be picked.
ALSO! Remember that I said keep in mind who we have on our line now, and pick the one with our greater need(imo).
Thank you all for Reading!!!
Here's a poll for who would you pick: