WSU Sports Information

Washington State offensive lineman Joe Dahl goes in 5th round to Detroit Lions

JOE DAHL today became the highest-drafted Washington State offensive lineman in two decades when Lions and WSU great Jason Hanson called his name for the Lions with the 12th pick of the 5th round (number 151 overall). Dahl was a first-team All-Pac-12 and second-team USA Today All-American at tackle in 2015 but he projects as a guard in the NFL.

He is the highest-drafted Cougar offensive lineman since Scott Sanderson went 81st overall in 1997.

Dahl was a three-year starter for the Cougars -- two at tackle and one at guard. As a junior in 2014 he earned honorable mention All-Pac-12 honors at left tackle after surrendering just one sack on 701 pass attempts. He came to WSU as a walk on in 2012 following a redshirt freshman season at Montana in 2011.

The Measurables:

Height/Weight: 6-4, 304

Arm length: 33 1/4

40 time: 5.35

Pre-Draft Rankings:

No. 2 guard by Pro Football Weekly

No. 6 guard by Sports Illustrated

No. 7 guard by's Todd McShay

No. 70 overall by CBS Sports

No. 132 overall by

Expert Breakdown:

Mel Kiper: "Smart player with the football aptitude to play all five offensive line positions. He quickly diagnoses and picks up line stunts and blitzes in pass pro. Locates second level assignments and does a nice job of adjusting on the fly as a run blocker ... He's not a traditional mauler who drives defenders into the ground and we'd would like to see more violence at times, but he blocks to the echo of the whistle and gets under defenders' skin with relentless effort. Manages pain well and played with a stress fracture in foot during 2015 season. "Scouts will want Dahl moved inside at the next level due to his average size and length. Either way, he’ll be a worthy pick as a potential starter ... Despite playing in pass-happy offense, shows ability to fire out with pop into defender and get some initial push as drive blocker. Good grip to maintain his initial block. Has hand quickness to move inside. Does a nice job of shifting weight to challenge inside moves. Coaches rave about his work habits and ability to retain information."

Gil Brandt: "Dahl  is one of my favorites in this draft. I like players who transfer up (think J.J. Watt); Dahl spent his freshman year at Montana before transferring to Wazzu, where he was a three-year starter at left guard and left tackle. He could play multiple positions at the next level, including center, but I think guard is his best position. He's strong (28 bench reps). Some team will draft him in the second round; others will wish they had."

Pro Football Weekly: "Very good strength and bulk. Gets movement in the run game. Can make combination blocks and cleanly get to the second block. Good in space, can adjust on the moving hit a moving target. Physical player and a very good competitor, consistently looks to finish. Strong week at Senior Bowl."


  • Dahl lettered three times in both football and basketball at University High in Spokane. In 2010, he was the only Spokane-area player to be named all-league first team on offense and defense. That same season he was elected first-team all-state at defensive end. His high school football coach was Bill Dietrich, a former offensive coordinator at WSU, Stanford, Notre Dame, Washington and Edmonton of the CFL.
  • Pro Football Focus rated him the best pass-protecting lineman in college football over the last two seasons.
  • The Lions have mined WSU for some exceptional talent over the years. The list includes Jason Hanson, Mike Utley, Eric Williams and 1960 NFL Rookie of the Year Gail Cogdill.

WSU's O-line history in the NFL draft since 1970:

2012 - Zack Williams, 6th round Carolina (203rd overall)

2005 - Calvin Armstrong, 6th round Philadelphia (211th overall)

1998 - Jason McEndoo, 7th round Seattle (197th overall)

1997 - Scott Sanderson, 3rd round Houston (81st overall)

1989 - Mike Utley, 3rd round Detroit (59th overall)

1989 - Chris Dyko, 8th round Chicago (221st overall)

1985 - Dan Lynch, 12th round Denver (334th overall)

1984 - Charlie Flager, 11th round New England (292nd overall)

1983 - Steve Sebahar, 11th round Philadelphia (285th overall)

1982 - Allan Kennedy, 10th round San Francisco (267th overall)

1976 - Robin Ross,10th round, San Francisco (275th overall)

1976 - Mark Young13th round, Oakland (370th overall)

1976 - Dan Smith15th round, Seattle (405th overall)

1975 - Geoff Reece, 3rd round Los Angeles (61st overall)

1974 - Tom Wickert, 8th round Miami (212th overall)

Rebilas/USA Today Sports



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