Off. Tackle: Best, Sleeper, Overrated

Scouts weigh in on the offensive tackles with the best prospect, sleeper and most overrated of the draft class. Topping our board is Central Michigan's Eric Fisher.

Here is a closer look at the offensive tackles, compiled from conversations with scouts and the NFL's longtime lead scout, Dave-Te' Thomas.

Best in class

1. Eric Fisher, Central Michigan (6-7, 306): Fisher was first-team all-conference as a senior, with 20 touchdown-producing blocks and a national-best 143 knockdown blocks. He backed it up by dominating at the Senior Bowl. "Fisher, in my opinion, should be the No. 1 guy taken," a scout said. "I think he's that good. Whereas Joeckel has been at a big program, training table and all of that, this guy has never ate buffet style three times a day. Plus, he's a little nastier, a little meaner in terms of finishing plays." That training table would allow Fisher to add 20 pounds without losing his athleticism.

Overrated

Kyle Long, Oregon (6-6, 313): Based purely on physical tools and the ability to be a standout left tackle, Long is a first-round pick. Baltimore is one team that will consider Long in the first round, according to a source. However, he started all of four games — at guard, no less — in 2012. Three scouts questioned his passion for the game, with one wondering if Long was in football just to satisfy the family name. "I think what it is is the last name," Thomas said. "He started four games over at Oregon. I can't get excited about him, especially with a second- or third-round draft pick. I wouldn't take him. If the Riddler lost his shirt, Kyle Long would be picking it up because this kid has so many question marks."

Sleeper

Luke Marquardt, Azusa Pacific (6-8, 315): Missed most of his senior season because of a broken foot and didn't test at the Combine (other than putting up 31 reps in the bench) as he recovered. At an individual pro day that the Packers attended on April 11 — and lost in the shuffle of Eddie Lacy's workout at Alabama — Marquardt was outstanding in position drills (though, again, he didn't do the testing). "For a guy that big, he really has good lateral agility," a scout said. He played quarterback as a high school freshman before focusing on basketball. Got the itch to play football in college and impressed the coach with his obvious physical tools. School's offensive line coach is the legendary Jackie Slater. If healthy, he might have gone in Day 2.


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Bill Huber is publisher of Packer Report magazine and PackerReport.com and has written for Packer Report since 1997. E-mail him at packwriter2002@yahoo.com, or leave him a question in Packer Report's subscribers-only Packers Pro Club forum. Find Bill on Twitter at twitter.com/PackerReport.


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