NFL Scouting Combine Preview: Interior OL

The interior O-Linemen who will participate in the Combine aren't an overwhelmingly talented group. But there are plenty of steady, intelligent players who will draw interest. Chris Steuber previews and ranks the guards and centers who are packing their bags for Indianapolis.

1. Mike Pollak, C, Arizona State, 6-4, 293

Pollak is a true technician and works well inside with his teammates. He uses his hands really well and impressed scouts in attendance at the Senior Bowl. He was the best interior lineman in Mobile and has a chance to elevate his stock higher in Indianapolis.

2. *Branden Albert, OG, Virginia, 6-6, 320

Albert’s decision to enter the draft was a surprise, as I believed he needed another year to develop. He has a lot of skills and has a great frame. At his size, he may ultimately move to tackle. He has to bend his knees consistently and explode off the snap. That’s what scouts will watch for at the Combine.

3. Robert Felton, OG, Arkansas, 6-3, 325

Felton is a very good interior lineman who excels at run blocking. He has tremendous leg drive and bullies the opposition off the line. He was impressive at the Senior Bowl by displaying a strong base and holding his ground against bigger defenders. He has to improve his footwork and the Combine is his next opportunity to develop.

4. Eric Young, OG, Tennessee, 6-3, 310

Young missed most of the season with a quadriceps injury, but when healthy, he’s one of the best linemen in the country. He will be at the Combine and it’s unknown as of yet if he'll be able to participate in a full workout. Scouts will be intrigued to see how Young performs in Indianapolis.

5. Steve Justice, C, Wake Forest, 6-3, 288

Justice doesn’t possess great size, but he has tremendous technique, and it was on display at the Senior Bowl. He moves extremely well and uses his hands to his advantage. He has to improve his run blocking and get a better push off the line. He’s a solid overall prospect who will be a starter for a long time at the next level.

Oregon State OG Roy Schuening protects up front for the Beavers.
Tom Hauck/Getty Images

6. Roy Schuening, OG, Oregon State, 6-3, 318

Schuening had a tough week in Mobile and didn’t show the consistency he displayed at Oregon State. He allowed the opposition to get inside and gain leverage and wasn’t able to hold his ground consistently. He didn’t explode off the line and appeared slow. Schuening will have to perform better at the Combine to regain his status as one of the best interior linemen in the draft.

7. Drew Radovich, OG, USC, 6-5, 304

Radovich lacks athleticism, but he’s consistent and a tremendous leader. He has a strong base and uses his hands well. He’s strong enough to keep bigger defenders at bay, but struggles against smaller, quicker interior defenders. He had a good week in Mobile, but has to show better mobility in Indianapolis.

8. *Chilo Rachal, OG, USC, 6-5, 315

Rachal was another underclassman I was surprised to see enter the draft. But due to a family illness, Rachal decided to do what was best for his family. He’s still raw and developing, but he has great skills and a very good work ethic. He will rise up draft charts after his performance in Indy.

9. Donald Thomas, OG, Connecticut, 6-4, 294

Thomas participated in both the Hula Bowl and the East-West Shrine game and performed very well by showing scouts what he can do on the field. He’s a raw athlete with tremendous strength and mobility. He’s still developing proper technique, but scouts will be excited to see him perform at the Combine, and Thomas’ stock will soar.

10. John Sullivan, C, Notre Dame, 6-4, 303

Sullivan is a steady, durable lineman who is strong at the point of attack. He has strong hands, quick feet and moves well inside. He’s a strong leader and commands respect from his linemates. He will interview well at the Combine and win over team personnel.

11. Cody Wallace, C, Texas A&M, 6-4, 302

12. Andrew Crummey, OG, Maryland, 6-5, 311

13. Kory Lichensteiger, C, Bowling Green, 6-3, 305

14. Chad Rinehart, OG, Northern Iowa, 6-5, 314

15. Christopher McDuffie, OG, Clemson, 6-4, 324

16. Pedro Sosa, OG, Rutgers, 6-4, 291

17. Mike Gibson, OG, California, 6-5, 302

18. Jamie Richard, C, Buffalo, 6-5, 298

19. Jeremy Zuttah, OG, Rutgers, 6-3, 294

20. Devin Clark, OG, New Mexico, 6-4, 312

21. Matt Spanos, C, USC, 6-5, 310

22. Shawn Murphy, OG, Utah State


* Underclassmen

A member of the Pro Football Writers of America and the Football Writers Association of America, Chris Steuber has provided his analysis of the NFL and NFL Draft prospects on the web and on the radio since 1999.

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