The offensive tackle position, particularly on the left side, is the life blood of any consistent, cohesive, offensive unit, since most professional clubs have found it is very hard to win football games with their QB sitting on his butt. Recent player draft have shown the viewing public just how much of a priority GM's, coaches and personnel people have placed on upgrading their respective football clubs by the drafting of quality players at the left offensive tackle position.
Eugene "The Blocking Machine" Monroe came to UVA with a great deal of fanfare and after a relatively slow stat has developed into a truly outstanding professional prospect. You can make book on the fact that this New Jersey native, will be a very early selection in the 2009 player draft. For a big man, he shows uncanny ability to adjust in space to movement while showing the ability to handle off big people in close quarters. Jason Smith of Baylor, Jamon Meredith of South Carolina, and Alex Boone of The Ohio State U should barring injury play a very long time at the professional level. Meredith is a very lean looking three hundred plus pounds, with a ton of ability. Although he will have to sit out the first three contests of the season (NCAA eligibility requirement), I look for him to have an outstanding senior season. Smith has plenty of range, good body balance, recovery and impressive footwork. Boone is the model of consistency; he's big, very physical and over his career has consistently played to a championship level.
Michael Oher of Ole Miss is another highly skilled athlete who many people consider the top left tackle prospect in the country, but based on my 2007 tape exposure, I was disappointed in his overall play. He's going to have to raise his game to game playing tempo and finish with far more consistency. Phil Loadholt from the University of Oklahoma is a giant among giants in an offensive front that can match any professional club in terms of pure physical mass. I really liked his short setting skills and rear power, but I want to see him on the ground far less in 2008. Georgia Tech's Andrew Gardner is big, has a solid skills set and could well be considered an elite left tackle prospect by season's end. Right offensive tackle Jason Watkins is in my opinion the very best Florida Gator offensive linemen prospect in the past decade.
|A||Meredith||Jamon||So Carolina U|
|B||Stanchek||Ryan||West Virginia U|
|C||Brown||Patrick||Central Florida U|
|C||Allen||Sam||Grand Valley State|
|C||Reynolds||Garrett||No Carolina U|
|C||Brost||Jon||Northern Illinois U|