Wednesday, September 27, 2017

2018 NFL Draft Prospects: Week 4-Offensinve Tackle

Martinas Rankin-Miss St, LT, 6-5, 315

Opponent: UGA

THE GOOD: Rankin moves well when asked to lead or pull.  He executes a beautiful cut block when he is on the move.  When he got his hands on the defender he rarely fell off his block.  What stood out most to me is his football IQ.  He was quick to recognize defensive stunts and blitz pressure.

THE BAD: While Rankin does a good job of engaging and staying with his man, he wont be confused with a "road grader" type offensive lineman.  He lacks the power and explosiveness at the point of attack to drive his man back.  In pass pro Rankin has a tendency to get too high and gets bent backward. 

THE UGLY:  Rankin moves well for a big man but his footwork needs to be improved to play LT in the NFL.  In his pass pro sets he is either back on his heels or flat-footed.  This made me assume he will be open to inside moves from speed rushers.  Late in the game UGA turned up the pressure and that is exactly what Davin Bellamy did to him.  If not for a tug on the jersey Rankin would have put his QB in some serious pain.  

IN THE END: Rankin played well in a tough game for the Bulldogs.  He possesses the building blocks for a solid LT in the NFL.  However, if his footwork cannot be improved he might find himself on the right side so he does not face as many quick DEs.  I have a hunch we might start hearing talks of Rankin being a natural OG.

Martez Ivey-Florida, LT, 6-5, 315

Opponent:  Kentucky

THE GOOD:  Ivey was at his best when he faced bull rushes from defenders.  He showed he has a strong core/base and can anchor in the face of power rushes.  In pass pro Ivey will try to throw the defender off by attacking with his hands early.  Ivey covers ground in his pass pro set with long strides and looks to be fluid while doing so.

THE BAD:  When asked to pull or down block Ivey is always a step or two slow.  On down blocks he can never get to his man quick enough to effectively block him.  When he was pulling his lack of speed made the runner have to wait for him to clear.  

THE UGLY:  Ivey is severely lacking in upper body strength, balance, ability to bend and effort.  Even though Ivey gets his hands on the defender quickly his lack of hand/arm strength makes him unable to keep his man under control.  Unless the defender stays directly in Ivey's center, which allows him to use his base/core strength, he does not have any other weapons to control his man or to neutralize DE counter moves.  His lack of upper body strength also creates balance issues for him when required to power block or block in space.  Ivey will try to compensate by trying to use his lower body to power through defenders but that will only lead to him falling off blocks and ending up on the ground.  Another glaring weakness in Ivey's game is his inability to bend at the knees.  In all aspects of blocking Ivey gets high in his sets and will whiff on blocks while on the move.  The most frustrating part of Ivey's game tape is his lack of effort.  There were too many instances where Ivey was content with just getting in the way of the defender instead of actually making a serious effort to block.  Also, if the defender fought through the initial contact Ivey didnt seem too interested in fighting to stay with his man.

IN THE END:  Ivey has been ranked by many as a top LT prospect and has some qualities of that.  However, after seeing so many flaws in his game I am leaning toward putting Ivey in the developmental tackle category.  In my projecting of players the "motor" category carries alot of weight.  After seeing the lack of basic interest from Ivey I have doubts that he can become a starting LT unless some coach can turn that around.

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