Scouting the top G/C prospects

As part of our series previewing the NFL draft, we examine the top prospects at every position. This installment features the guards and centers.

Overall class strength: Guards and centers usually don't create a lot of excitement around draft weekend, and it's the same story this year. Nick Mangold of Ohio State is as good a center prospect as you'll find in a typical year, but there isn't much behind him at that position. At guard, there's no stud prospect but decent depth.

The best: C Nick Mangold, Ohio State; G Max Jean-Gilles, Georgia; G Davin Joseph, Oklahoma; G Chris Chester, Oklahoma; G Charles Spencer, Pittsburgh; G Tautusi Lutui, USC.

The next wave: C Ryan Cook, New Mexico; C Greg Eslinger, Minnesota; G Kevin Boothe, Cornell; G Rob Sims, Ohio State.

Possible sleepers: G Jahri Evans, Bloomsburg; G Chris Kuper, North Dakota.

First-round projections: Mangold, Jean-Gilles.

Quick hits: Lutui is better known these days by his nickname "Deuce." ... New Mexico's Cook is unusually tall for a center at almost 6 feet 7. ... Wisconsin's Donovan Raiola, who should be a mid-round selection, is the brother of former Detroit Lions draft pick Dominic Raiola. ... Spencer arrived at Pitt as a defensive tackle and played offensive tackle as a senior, but his best NFL position will be guard. ... Jean-Gilles is a big prospect at 6-4, 358, and his weight might be the biggest concern with him.


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