Strengths: You can’t teach size, and it’s evident from Madden’s 6-7 frame that he’s blessed in that regard. Madden uses that frame to often dictate player’s movement when he is engaged with them. His cut blocking was hit and miss Friday, but was an effective weapon when he executed successfully. On one such block Madden took out three players – two linemen and a blitzing linebacker. His length and size allows him to clear a lot of running room, as he approached double digits in pancake blocks against Lakewood.
Weaknesses: By his own admission, Madden has got to get quicker, which is evident when watching him. There were a handful of times where Madden was beat by quicker defenders. He also had trouble getting out to block in time for screen plays when he failed to get a good burst off the snap of the football. Right now, bigger, stronger or quicker players will give him trouble. Weighing between 340 and 350 pounds, Madden also has to drop some of the bad weight that is on him and remake himself with some good muscle. Doing that should help him gain some speed.
Overall: Madden has the tools and the makings of being a good lineman at Wisconsin, but just needs time to refine his body and learn the necessary tools that will give him an edge. The biggest problem right now for Madden is competition, as he is heads and shoulders above all the other linemen on his team, which makes it hard for him to get quality reps during the week.
Madden is still slightly behind in his development after playing his sophomore season with a fractured foot. According to his head coach, he’s a bit of a project now with great potential down the road. I tend to agree.