Bridge will be asked to mold a young offensive line with many moveable pieces—certainly a busy task for the offseason. There are just a few certainties on the offensive line; Robert Kugler, Jason King and Jordan Roos are among those. The three put together a strong spring and appear poised to play. Senior Devin Smith has potential to start at tackle, but needs to show more mobility with his 320-pound frame.
Biggest Riser—Remember when Robert Kugler was a tight end? That seems like a long time ago, now. Kugler tips the scales at a healthy 280 pounds and has the frame of an offensive guard, but his abilities match it. Kugler put together a standout spring, showing consistency to the coaching staff. While the unit struggled to sync at times, Kugler was a bright spot. Kugler should be in line for a starting job this season.
Needs a strong summer— Devin Smith battled an ankle injury for much of the spring, hampering his mobility, but it's still not up to speed. Smith stands at 6-foot-7 and 320 pounds. When he get into the open field, linebackers and defensive backs better run the other way. The problem is that he struggles to get there. Smith needs to show he's more than just a physically imposing body in the trenches.
Quote to note—"It gets pretty intense. You can't be a softy on the offensive line and be successful in Division I football." –offensive lineman Jordan Roos, on workouts with the offensive line this spring.
Prediction— The offensive line had great struggles during portions of the spring, at it impacted the entire offense. Those are mistakes that are a lot more acceptable in March than they are in October. I believe in Jim Bridge and his group. With tons of potential in the unit—names like Roos, King and Kugler standing out the most—the Boilermaker offensive line will take strides.