It is clear that there is a shortage of good NFL offensive lineman and while interior lineman are easier to find, the need for good tackle play is even deeper. This can cause teams to reach for tackles as we saw with the Raiders taking Kolton Miller fifteenth overall when he was thought to go in the second round this past years draft. This year could be different as the offensive tackle class is setting up to be pretty good and nine tackles (depending on underclassmen declaring) could easily go in the first two rounds of the 2019 NFL Draft. With all the potential talent in this group the thing that stands out is that Washington schools have three of these nine prospects. So that tells us, if you need offensive tackles for the NFL Draft, maybe you should head to Washington and check these three out!
State of Washington Offensive Tackles for the NFL Draft
Trey Adams, Washington
The best tackle of this group is Adams out of Washington whose play on profiles that of a top 15 pick. Adams is massive standing 6’8 309lbs but despite that size he shows smooth lateral agility that allows him to slide out and cut of off pass rushers. Even when Adams gets beat he can use his length to push defenders past the pocket. Because of his height it makes it tough for Adams to get good leverage and move defenders, but he’s able to use his hands well to control the defender and then position his body to seal them off. Because of all of this Adams reminds me a lot of Detroit Lions left tackle Taylor Decker because of their similar size and playing style.
While Adams plays like a first rounder, injuries are going to likely hurt his chances of going where he should. Adams has had two season ending injuries raising some red flags about his durability. In 2017 he tore his ACL and missed half of the season while this year Adams has missed all of this season with a back injury. ACL’s are one thing but the back injury is likely going to worry some NFL teams. There may be some teams that will medically flunk him and take Adams off their draft board, but others may want to take a change one the talented tackle or feel that he can recover. He may go in the late first round, but more than likely he’s a day two pick.
Andre Dillard, Washington State
Washington State is known for their passing attacks, but it’s their left tackle Andre Dillard that is the best prospect on their team. The senior left tackle is athletic for his 6’5 315lb frame showing effortless lateral movement to mirror pass rushers while providing a solid punch to keep defenders off his body. Dillard also plays with good knee bend which allows him to have good leverage, maintain his balance and even be ready to change direction. There are some that question his run blocking abilities, but Dillard shows the ability to engage with the defender and use his body to shield them from the play. It would be great to have him be a better run blocker, but the NFL is a passing league and if he can just occupy the defenders enough in the run game, NFL teams will be happy. Dillard at a minimum should looks like a second round pick, but could either elevate his game to the first round or go there because of team needs.
Kaleb McGary, Washington
Much like his teammate Trey Adams, Kaleb McGary is a massive man at 6’8 325lbs and despite Adams’ injury he has stayed at right tackle. His height like Adams’ makes it tough to get good leverage but what separates McGary is his strong upper body that allows him to push, turn and move defenders out of the way. Having that strength and technique allows McGary to be counted on in the run game to create running lanes. As a pass blocker McGary is at his best when he’s able to get his hands on a defender and use that upper body strength to lock them down and side laterally with them. What causes McGary to be not be considered an elite tackle is he can struggle to get depth in his drops. Against BYU he was called for two holding calls when the pass rusher got to the edge with speed. McGary has starter traits and the need for good right tackles is out there, but he’s more of a day two prospect.