NFL Draft Capsules -- Offensive Linemen

By United Press International  |  April 24, 2003 at 5:32 PM
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NFL Draft Player Capsules -- Offensive Linemen

Jordan Gross, T, 6-4 1/2, 300, Utah -- Expected to be the first tackle selected in the draft and a probable top-10 selection. Helped himself by fully participating in all drills at the combine, where he ran a 5.05 in the 40-yard dash and scored high on the Wonderlic test. Started all 11 games at left tackle last season and was a finalist for the Outland Trophy despite not playing at a renowned college power. Started every game in 2000 and 2001, playing both tackle and guard positions in that period. His versatility will be valued, although most NFL teams would want him to be a fixture at left tackle. Has superb lateral-slide agility, but lacks the great size of a Jonathan Ogden.

Kwame Harris, T, 6-7, 310, Stanford -- Declared for the draft after his junior year. A probable top-20 selection. Has great size and impressed scouts with his mobility in individual drills at the combine. Posted a 35 1/2-inch vertical leap. Started every game at right tackle each of the last two years. Awarded the Morris Trophy as the top offensive lineman in the Pac-10 Conference last year. Has long arms, but lacks strength in the upper body and is late off the ball at times.

Wayne Hunter, T, 6-5, 303, Hawaii -- It has been a career of changes for Hunter, who transferred to Hawaii after starting 10 games at defensive tackle for California as a freshman. He made the switch to the offensive line last season and started at left tackle. Due to a relatively thin crop of offensive lineman, Hunter could go higher than expected. Needed to develop his upper body strength and may have done that with an impressive bench press performance at the scouting combine. Hunter, who left school early for the NFL, lacks some technique due to his abbreviated time on the offensive line. One of two offensive line prospects from Hawaii, joining Vince Manuwai.

Eric Steinbach, G-T, 6-6, 297, Iowa -- Steinbach graded the best among offensive linemen at the combine with a 40-yard dash time of 4.88. Also has a 35 1/2-inch vertical. Showed NFL scouts he has the feet and athleticism to play tackle at the next level, but is projected to play guard. Started at guard last season and was the Big Ten Offensive Lineman of the Year. Played a total of 11 games in 2000 and 2001, missing time with an ankle injury and a dislocated elbow. Was a high school quarterback who came to Iowa as a tight end.

Vince Manuwai, G, 6-2, 304, Hawaii -- Started at right guard for Hawaii and led the team with 60 "pancake" blocks last year while allowing just one sack. Was a first-team All-Western Athletic Conference selection and helped his stock with an impressive peformance at the Senior Bowl. Manuwai was not asked to be an extensive run blocker in June Jones' system in Hawaii, which could be a concern. But he is an advanced pass blocker and could make the swtich to center. He is one of two NFL prospects on the Hawaii offensive line, joining Wayne Hunter.

George Foster, T, 6-5, 338, Georgia -- NFL teams are looking at the upside of Foster, who dislocated his right wrist in a car accident last summer and did not play until late last season. Some scouts were concerned that he looked out of shape when he returned to the lineup at the Senior Bowl and that he still may need an operation to correct the wrist problem. His best season was 2001, when he started nine games. His stock improved with a strong March workout and he is projected as a solid right tackle. Shuffles his feet well for a man his size.

Brett Williams, T-G, 6-5, 321, Florida State -- A high school All-American, Williams has won the Jacobs Trophy the last two seasons, given to the top offensive lineman in the Atlantic Coast Conference. Was used as a left tackle until last season, when he was used on both sides. Scouts like his versatility and upper body strength, but his lower-body strength has become a question and he likely will be swtiched to guard. Once considered a solid first-round candidate, Williams may have seen his stock slip in recent weeks.

Jeff Faine, C, 6-2, 303, Notre Dame -- Centers traditionally do not get drafted in the first round, but Faine did enough to earn a spot near the bottom of the round. He started three years for the Fighting Irish and last year was a finalist for the Rimington Award as the best center of the country. Played a key role in the resurgence of the Fighting Irish under Tyrone Willingham and emerged as a team leader. He gets off the ball well and is a better pass blocker than a run blocker. He might be overpowered by the bigger NFL defensive linemen.

Jon Stinchcomb, T-G, 6-5, 302, Georgia -- One of the more intriguing options among offensive linemen, Stinchcomb can bench press 500 pounds and is considered a very smart player. He has started the last four years at Georgia and was first-team All-Southeastern Conference. His brother, Matt, was a first-round draft pick of the Oakland Raiders in 1999. He is able to run well for his size and could be used at both guard or tackle. There is concern that he can be pushed around by bigger defenders.

Tony Pashos, T, 6-5, 337, Illinois -- Pashos started every game of his college career and was a first-team All-Big Ten selection in 2001. Made a statement in 2002 when he controlled California's Andre Carter, who went on to become a first-round draft choice of the San Francisco 49ers. Pashos can bench press 500 pounds but is still quick off the ball. His strength is as a run blocker and the concern is how he will handle the quicker NFL defensive linemen.

Montrae Holland, G, 6-1, 333, Florida State -- One of the top prospects at guard. Was a second-team All-Atlantic Coast Conference performer in 2001, when he allowed only two sacks. An ankle injury forced him to miss several games last season. While Florida State likes to pass, Holland made his living as a a powerful run blocker. Scouts like his ability as a one-one-one blocker. Needs to work on his pass-blocking technique and there are concerns about his ability to watch his weight.

Al Johnson, C, 6-3, 305, Wisconsin -- Was a finalist for the Rimington Award as the top center in the country last season and has started every game for the last three years. Increased his stock with a strong performance at the Senior Bowl. A high school shot put champion, Johnson is considered an agile, aggressive performer who holds his blocks well. Does not snap for kicks, which could make him less attractive for teams looking for versatility.

Bruce Nelson C, 6-5, 301, Iowa -- One of three finalists for the Rimington Award, Nelson was a key blocker for Brad Banks during the Hawkeyes' charmed season of 2002. Came to Iowa as a walk-on tight end and became a starter at tackle in 1999. Was used at guard in 2000 before moving to center. A smart player known for his quick feet, Nelson sometimes struggled in on-on-one situations and there are questions about his overall strength.

Derrick Dockery, G, 6-6, 347, Texas -- Dockery started six games at right guard and six at left gaurd last season and was a semifinalist for the Outland Trophy. While some scouts project him as a tackle, he may be best suited at his familiar position. He may not have reached his full potential at Texas and would sometimes wear down late in games. Dockery uses his size to an advantage and is a coachable, intelligent player. In 2001, he battled an illness that left him in a weakened condition.

Torrin Tucker, G, 6-5, 328, Southern Mississippi -- A first-team All-Conference USA selection, Tucker has started at guard the last three years after one at tackle. Flourished in the passing-oriented offense at Southern Miss. Tucker is a durable guard who quick and powerful off the ball. Tucker is a dean's list scholar who already is in graduate school, but also has a problem controlling his temper and could be a Kyle Turley in the making.

Dan Koppen, C, 6-2, 297, Boston College -- Koppen was a starter at Boston College the last three years and was a second-team All-Big East center the last two seasons. Most scout consider him a solid if unspectacular prospect. Made all the offensive line calls for the Eagles. Koppen is a hard worker, but will not dazzle anyone with his size or speed. Could make himself more valuable if he improves his long-snapping ability.

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