2012 NFL Draft — Statistical Analysis of Offensive Linemen

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So, let’s start with the offensive guards.  The following table shows the top tier offensive guards in this year’s draft.  The table denotes the player and his 2011 college along with delineating his 2012 NFL Combine measurables.  The table also shows the prospect’s number of college starts and various starting positions along with college honors plus his team’s number of sacks allowed and yards per attempt in the rushing game.  Finally, I included the prospect’s projected draft round selection, according to NFLDraftScout.com, and the prospect’s scouting grade, according to The NFL Football Post, which was assessed on or about the 2012 NFL Combine — it should be noted that Jeff Ireland stated his draft board has not changed much in the last few months.  You can click on this table to enlarge.

2012 NFL Draft — Offensive Guards

I found that there are only two (2) guards worthy of selection in the first round and the same number in the second round.  The player that is far and away the elite man of the group is David DeCastro (Stanford).  Many have graded DeCastro as the best offensive lineman in the draft — The NFL Football Post has him graded as the third best overall player in the draft.  He may be worth of selection by the Dolphins with the 8th pick — he is that good — could eventually be a perennial Pro Bowler — and, oh by the way, the Dolphins could really use a RG, which DeCastro has played in 39 straight starts without injury.  It is worth noting the fast rise up the draft charts by Josh LeRibeus (SMU) and James Brown (Troy) — reflected by their poor scouting grade on or about the time of the NFL Combine.  Lucas Nix (Pitt) could be a steal in the 5th round — he had a very good early scouting grade.

Alternatively to guards, there are nine (9) offensive tackles worthy of selection in the first and second rounds.  Five of the nine top tier offensive tackles could be selected in the first round.  The following table shows the top tier offensive tackles with the same comparative parameters as shown in the table for offensive guards.

2012 NFL Draft — Top Tier Offensive Tackles

Matt Kalil (USC) is far and away the elite man of this group.  However, there are some quality prospect’s who could be selected in rounds three thru five.  The following table shows the second tier offensive tackles with the same comparative parameters.

2012 NFL Draft — Second Tier Offensive Tackles

Of these second tier tackles, Brandon Mosley (Auburn) and Tony Bergstrom (Utah) could be steals in the fourth round.  And, Nate Potter (Boise State — 2nd Team AP All-American) and Matt McCants (UAB) could be steals in the fifth round — both may need some bulking up during training camp.

I actually believe the Dolphins would be hard pressed to select an offensive tackle in the first round over David DeCastro — the gap in grade is just too great.  You can read my recent article on DeCastro to get my complete feelings on him — I am high on DeCastro.  If the Dolphins don’t select an offensive lineman in the first round, they could select a tackle (like Schwartz of Cal or Mosley of Auburn) in the third round and a guard (like Nix of Pitt) in the fifth round to upgrade the sad state of the right side of the offensive line.

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What do you think the Dolphins will do in the 2012 Draft regarding offensive linemen?

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Topics: Brandon Mosley, David DeCastro, Jeff Ireland, Joe Philbin, Lucas Nix, Matt Kalil, Matt McCants, Miami Dolphins, Nate Potter, NFL, NFL Draft, Offensive Guard, Offensive Line, Offensive Tackle, Riley Reiff, Stephen Ross, Tony Bergstrom

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