Bryan Bulaga  OT  Iowa

TALENT BOARD

 Round 1


 

STRENGTHS

Bryan is a technically sound left tackle for his college team.  He has enough lateral agility to mirror his opponent when pass blocking.  Bryan is an excellent run blocking tackle and has the agility to be used in any kind of run blocking offensive line system.  Bryan exhibits the leadership skills, mental stamina and pride in his personal play that all left tackles need to be successful for the next level.  If you are looking for a left tackle at any point in the draft, you would be smart to look at, and draft, Bryan in any round and at any time.  I can tell by his play on the field that he is a quality kid who could play more than one position on the line and do it for the next ten years at a Pro Bowl level.   

 

NEEDS TO IMPROVE

Bryan needs to drastically improve his upper body strength as it's his biggest weakness right now.  He also might be a better fit for a vertical play action offense because he lacks the true quickness out of his stance; his first lateral step is a little slow when pass blocking.  All of these issues can be worked on and improved as Bryan gets stronger and more experienced.  I have no doubt that Bryan will do just that.

    

BOTTOM LINE

If you draft this kid, you are drafting a quality offensive lineman.  In some offensive systems, you might have to move him into the left guard position.  However, to me, drafting a quality offensive lineman in the first round of a draft for the left side of your line is the smartest move you can make.  In the first three rounds, that's what the draft is all about... drafting quality players who fit your system and can get on the field right away.  Bryan is technically sound and although he lacks NFL strength right now, that is not a reason not to draft this kid early in this draft.  Bryan is a safe pick; unfortunately, for unknown reasons to me, some teams shy away from picking safe picks in the first round.  Personally, I will never figure that out.  There are bigger, more athletic offensive tackles in this draft that a lot of people are going to suggest will be better than Bryan sometime in the future.  All I can say to that is, the future is now and Bryan is better right now...you know what they say about a "bird in hand."  So, why take a chance?  Why pay money for potential that needs to be developed when Bryan is sitting there technically sound and ready to play?  Bryan could be drafted in the top ten of this draft, or he could drop to the later part of the first round.  It will all depend on the ego of the people drafting offensive tackles.  The Miami Dolphins drafted Jake Long as the first pick in the 2008.  Bryan has the same type of talent as Jake has and, in an offense like the Miami Dolphins are currently utilizing, Bryan could be a Pro Bowl left tackle.  He just needs to get stronger.  I call him Bryan (W.B.) Bulaga -- W.B. stands for worker bee because that is the type of offensive lineman you are going to get when you draft Bryan.       

 

Drew Boylhart  1/10