Marshal Yanda OT/OG Iowa
First of all, I am profiling Marshal for the left guard position and not for the tackle position because he is not a tackle. He could very easily be a future Pro Bowl left guard and they are hard to find. Marshal is very quick out of his stance and shows good pass blocking techniques, but he lacks the needed lateral agility and change of direction skills needed to be a tackle at this stage of his career. He shows good mental toughness and although he is a good run blocker, he is not a bull-like run blocker. Right now, he uses solid technique in blocking for the run more than power. Marshal is a smart player and as soon as he learns his assignments and does them to his personal standards, he then shows the confidence to lead others around him. Marshal will impact very quickly as a left guard, but his LTI to be a tackle will be a lot longer and more difficult for him to handle emotionally and physically.
NEEDS TO IMPROVE
As with most linemen, he will have to get stronger in both his upper and lower body and if you want him to learn RT, he is going to have to improve his lateral agility along with getting stronger and working harder on his change of direction skills.
TALENT BOARD ROUND: 3
Iím rating Marshal as a left guard and I think he will be a very good one. If I were to rate him for the tackle position, then I would have to give him a 5th or 6th round talent score. I just think itís very foolish to work this kid out like they did in the senior bowl as a tackle when left guards are more difficult to find than right tackles. In the future, Marshal might be a solid RT; however, his LTI, talents and overall demeanor scream to me future Pro Bowl left guard. With many teams now going to that 1-gap attack defense where they shoot the DTís through the gaps as quickly as possible, left guards are becoming more important than right tackles. There is a premium on finding left guards and most of the time, the way to fill that position is to take a college left tackle who is not athletic enough to handle LT at the next level and move him inside. The problem with that is that it takes time for those college LTís to identify and handle the stunts and blitzes; therefore, your QB goes through a lot of pain waiting for those players to get up to speed. Marshal is almost a plug-in left guard except for his overall strength. It would not surprise me at all to see him on the field very quickly at the left guard position for the team that drafts him. He is a natural left guard and to force him to another position would be a crime. It wonít be long before we all start seeing Marshal in a Pro Bowl -- I think in about three years. He will be a core player and a fan favorite for the team that drafts him.