Brandon Thomas   OG/OT   Clemson

TALENT BOARD ROUND 2

STRENGTHS
Brandon has the athletic talent and size to play more than one position on your offensive line. He has long arms that make it easier to push players up the field against those outside pass rushers and looks to have the quickness out of his snap to play inside also. He is a good run blocker and has the athleticism and foot speed to get out to the second level to make blocks against the linebackers and can get outside for sweeps and screen plays. Brandon has solid lateral agility and his arm length is also beneficial as it allows him to be considered by some teams as a possible offensive tackle.

CONCERNS
Brandon gets very sloppy with his pass blocking techniques. He has a bad habit of dropping his head just before he engages when pass blocking which, at the next level, will allow his opponents to get him off balance to make whatever pass rushing move they want to against him. Brandon also doesnít have the mental stamina right now to play left tackle in the NFL. His lack of consistency using the correct techniques (when pass blocking or run blocking) sends a signal of a lack of on field maturity. In his defense, sometimes when you block for a running quarterback you start to get lax in your blocking techniques. Thatís not an excuse, but it does happen.

BOTTOM LINE
Brandon has the athletic talent and size to play guard or tackle. I believe his impact position will be as a Left Guard or Right tackle. The biggest issue is for Brandon to develop his mental strength and to play consistently. He gets a bit lazy and starts blocking opponents with his shoulders and letting players into his body on running plays. Thatís sloppy blocking. When he pass blocks, he drops his head and doesnít consistently defend the inside because of this. He has some work to do to improve and if you donít draft him too high and give him some hard coaching and time to develop, Brandon has the potential to be a Pro Bowl Left Guard or an excellent Right Tackle. When he uses the correct techniques, Brandon is one of the better linemen in this draft. In fact, he has 1st round talent, but his lack of consistency in techniques and maturity on the field lands him with a 2nd round talent grade. I believe he will land someplace in the 2nd or 3rd round, but check Robís value board to see what his value is to the 32 teams in the NFL. If they think he can play the tackle position, his value will be higher and he could be selected earlier than I have him rated. I wouldnít, but they may.

Drew Boylhart
MAR/2014