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Sep. 30, 2020 - Michael Stewart

2021 NFL Draft: Top 3 Offensive Linemen at each position

Introduction: Welcome back to the second of four articles featuring the top prospects in the 2021 NFL draft. In this article, we will focus on the offensive line and break it down as such: Top 3 centers and since there are two guard and tackle positions on the offensive line; we will showcase the top 6 at both positions. Again, the college season has just started and my list could certainly change as the season unfolds. For now, these are my top prospects on the offensive line for the 2021 NFL draft.

Centers:

  • Creed Humphey (Oklahoma)-6’5/325: Humphrey had a solid 2018 season as a redshirt freshman, but suffered a setback with his performance in 2019; which made him forego the 2020 NFL draft. Humphrey has all the tools to be a dominant center at the next level and needs to showcase than in 2020 to be considered the best center in the draft.  
  • Trey Hill (Georgia)-6’4/330: Hill is a solid run blocker and is equally efficient in the passing game. Hill has good mobility for his size and can be effective in open space. Hill’s versatility could enable him to transition over to guard in the NFL if needed.
  • Josh Myers (Ohio State)-6’5/312: Myers has good size and was an effective run/pass blocker for the Buckeyes in the 2019. Myers could leap frog over the centers projected ahead of him and possible be the 1st center off the board in the draft with a solid 2020 season.

Left Guards:

  • Wyatt Davis (Ohio State)-6’4/310: Davis edges out Trey Smith as the most polished and completed offensive guard in the 2021 NFL draft. Davis was so efficient that he didn’t allow a single sack or hit on 459 pass-blocking snaps in 2019.
  • Trey Smith (Tennessee)-6’6/325: Smith has had issues with recurring blood clots in his lungs that have hindered his development and draft stock. When healthy Smith finished the final 8 games in 2019 with an overall grade of 81.5. Smith can play multiple positions on the offensive line, but many scouts believe he will be a guard in the NFL.
  • Deonte Brown (Alabama)-6’4/340: Brown missed most of the 2019 season due to a suspension, but is ready to go in 2020. Brown is enormous and utilizes his size effectively in both the running and passing game. Character issues could push Brown down a bit in the draft, but if he can straighten that out; the team drafting him will get a solid linemen for the next decade.

Left Tackles:

  • Penei Sewell (Oregon)-6’6/330: Sewell led the entire country with a 95.8 overall grade as a sophmore. Sewell could go in the top 3 in this draft and as the 1st non-quarterback taken as well. Sewell checks off all the boxes and a solid pick to build an offensive line around.
  • Alex Leatherwood (Alabama)-6’6/310: Leatherwood isn’t going to light up the game film with flashy highlight; but what he goes do well is play steady from start to finish. Leatherwood is efficient in open space and has excellent footwork and hand placement.
  • Walker Little (Stanford)-6’7/310: Injuries has hindered Little’s stock in the draft, but he still manages to make my early list. If Little can stay healthy and performed as expected, he should be one of the 1st top 3 Offensive tackles taken in the draft. 

Right Guards:

  • Cade Mays (Tennessee)-6’6/317: Mays was a solid performer for the Georgia Bulldogs in 2019, but decided to transfer to Tennessee in 2020. Mays ability to play both the Tackle and Guard position will serve him well in the NFl as many scouts project him to be a Guard. Mays has a solid foundation and is polished in both the run/pass.
  • Jackson Carman (Clemson)-6’4/345: Carman has played both the Tackle and Guard position at Clemson and most NFL scouts project him as a Guard in the NFL. Carman is all about brute strength; especially in his lower half and also has an endless motor mentality; makes him an interest prospect for a team looking to improve their offensive line.
  • Tommy Kraemer (Notre Dame) 6’5/319-Kraemer is a road grader and a brawler especially in the running game. Kraemer isn’t flashy and animated with his play, he is simply a blue collar tough physically and mentality and will battle you onto the whistle. Kraemer could be a late Day 2 or early Day 3 pick in the draft and should have a productive NFL career as a serviceable offensive Guard.

Right Tackles:

  • Sam Cosmi (Texas)-6’7/315: Cosmi might be a little rough around the edges in terms of technique, but many NFL scouts believe that he can develop into a solid offensive tackle in the NFL. Cosmi has good length in his arms and could easily add another 20 pounds to his frame. Cosmi could be drafted early on Day 2 of the draft with a solid 2020 season.
  • Jalen Mayfield (Michigan)-6’5/320: Mayfield has extreme quickness and athleticism for his size; which he utilizes well against pass rushers. Mayfield is also solid as a run blocker and could hear his name called possibly on Day 1 of the draft with a solid 2020 season.
  • Alaric Jackson (Iowa)-6’6/320: Jackson played in the shadows of Right Tackle Tristan Wirfs despite playing Left Tackles in a very competitive conference. Jackson should make a name for himself in 2020 and will likely transition over to either Right Tackle or at Guard in the NFL.

Final Thoughts: The 2021 NFL draft seems deeper with overall talent at the offensive line position than in 2020. Based on early projections, NFL teams should be able to select talented offensive line with the ability to start in the NFL. As the college season unfolds I will conduct an updated evaluation of these prospects and if needed, will provide a revised list of the best of the best. Next article will feature the defensive side of the ball: Defensive linemen and Inside Linebackers.