Vikings had extra interest in tackle prospect

The Vikings were giving extra attention to an offensive tackle during a pro day earlier this month, according to sources on site. Get the full scouting report inside.

The Minnesota Vikings were spotted giving extra attention to former Oregon offensive tackle Jake Fisher at the Ducks’ pro day, according to sources on site earlier this month.

The Vikings have their starters in place for now, with Matt Kalil still manning the left tackle spot and Phil Loadholt at right tackle. They also have some depth at the position having re-signed Mike Harris and Antonio Richardson coming off injured reserve.

But that isn’t stopping them from investigating the versatile Oregon lineman.

Fisher, at 6-foot-6 and 306 pounds, was an Outland Trophy semifinalist and received All-American first-team honors from the Football Writers Association of America and Phil Steele, adding third-team accolades from the Associated Press and honorable mention from Sports Illustrated. H was an All-Pac 12 Conference first-team selection after moving from right tackle in 2013 to left tackle in 2014, when he started 13 games and missed two with a left knee sprain.

The Ducks were a much better team at protecting when he was in the lineup.

He posted 63 knockdowns with 12 touchdown-resulting blocks, grading 83.92 percent for blocking consistency. In the two games he missed with a leg injury (Washington State, UCLA), the Ducks gave up five sacks. In 12 games with Fisher starting, the team yielded only 13 more sacks.

Here is the scouting report on Fisher from head NFL scout Dave-Te’ Thomas:

The Oregon offensive line was sorely depleted by injuries that cost the team four of their projected starters at one point. Couple that with a sluggish start to the season by 2013 All-American center Hroniss Grasu and you have to be impressed that the Ducks still managed to score 42 times on the ground behind a running unit that averaged 234.5 yards per game.

One of the main reasons was the steady play of their left tackle, who delivered 18 touchdown-resulting blocks and 98 knockdowns to guide the team to an 11-0 record with Fisher in the lineup. The former right tackle took over duties on the left side in 2014 and was regarded as the team’s fastest blocker. With a highly mobile quarterback in Heisman Trophy winner Marcus Mariota, Ducks blockers need to have above average foot speed and lateral agility to provide protection for a passer often on the move.

Fisher is also very versatile, having started 22 games at right tackle during the 2012-13 schedules. He originally joined the program as a guard. He lacks consistent explosion and drive off the ball, but has good balance and ability to stay on his feet after contact. He flashes a strong hand punch, but while he keeps good position, he needs to add more power in order to drive block with consistency (tries to run his feet, but needs to improve lower strength).

In the run game, he stays low in his pads and uses his long arms to get movement and root out the defender. He is very good at reading and reacting to the action in front of him. His foot agility allows him to slide, adjust and maintain position on his man in the short area. He is not the most fluid runner working in space, but has improved his flexibility, body control and sink-ability.

The first thing you notice on film is Fisher’s ability to explode off the snap. He has good quickness getting into the second level. He also displays a strong base, along with the suddenness to get his hands into the defender. He is light on his feet for a player of his size, showing quick reactions to combat any defensive movement.

Whether lining up in a two- or three-point stance, he can set up to protect the edge with good urgency, but must be conscious of maintaining a wide base, as he tends to get too upright and narrow at times, which allow defenders to slip inside with a quick swim move.

Fisher is a hard object to move out when he plants his feet firmly at the point of attack He does a solid job executing reach blocks and maintaining position when working in-line. He could use more bulk to clear out and maintain the rush lanes, but shows quick feet in his kick slide. For some reason, he seems to struggle getting low in his stance to generate leverage on the move, but he has the reach and extension ability to cover defenders up at the line of scrimmage.

Fisher shows much better explosion with his hands coming off the snap, but will tend to lean and use his body more than gain proper hand placement. When he stays low in his stance, he is effective at getting under the defender’s pads to jolt the opponent, but he needs to do a more consistent job with sitting, as he is prone to locking his feet and getting too upright in his stance.

Fisher is not asked to pull and trap much, but has the quickness to turn it up on the second-level defenders. He is athletic and smooth in his movements and has the body control to execute blocks in space, but needs to maintain proper pad level working in the second level, but there are times where he will get too tall in his stance, causing his base to narrow.

Fisher can extend, jolt and shock the opponent when he gets his hands on them, but needs to do it with more consistency. He is strong on top, but still learning the proper technique for grabbing, getting caught for holding four times in 2014. He can stun people with his punch and control the point of attack, but while he flashes good arm extension in-line, he fails to maintain that extension blocking on the move. He also must be more alert to the cadence, as he was prone to jumping off-side the second half of the 2014 schedule.


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