2020 NFL Draft prospect rankings: Offensive line
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theScore's Mike Alessandrini and Dan Wilkins break down the top offensive line prospects in the upcoming 2020 NFL Draft as part of a position-by-position series.

Top 50
QB | RB | TE | WR | OL
DL | EDGE | LB | CB | S

Offensive tackles

1. Jedrick Wills Jr.

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School: Alabama
Height: 6-4
Weight: 312 lbs

Positives

  • Advanced pass-protector
  • Quick and efficient movement out of stance and into set points
  • Varied punch timing with excellent placement in pass protection
  • Great lateral quickness to mirror rushers and shut down counters
  • Patience to avoid opening up too early
  • Base strength and leverage technique to anchor vs. power
  • Impressive power and drive as a run-blocker
  • Smooth working to second level off combo blocks
  • Ultra-competitive finisher, plays through whistle

Negatives

  • Transition required for LT role
  • Inconsistent hand usage in run game
  • Will struggle to lock out as run-blocker due to hand placement
  • Untimely pre-snap penalty issues

Bottom line

If it wasn't for a generational wide-receiver class, many would be talking about how intriguing this year's group of offensive tackles is. And Wills is the star. An advanced pass-protector by prospect standards, the Alabama standout can step in and be a difference-maker in the NFL immediately. While he's got some technical things to clean up in the run game, he's also shown upside for high-level impact there, too. Wills' combination of athleticism, power, and toughness - along with a productive SEC resume - is more than enough to get him drafted early.

Grade: Top 15

2. Andrew Thomas

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School: Georgia
Height: 6-5
Weight: 315 lbs

Positives

  • Great size and length for an NFL tackle
  • Three years of starting experience against top-tier SEC rushers
  • Road grader in the run game - explodes out of his stance to get to the second level and has a ton of strength to drive defenders forward
  • Consistently wins on reach and down blocks
  • Good athlete who can block in space
  • Excellent power at the point of attack and core strength to absorb contact
  • One of college football's best pressure rates as a pass-blocker
  • Has strong punch to knock rushers off their path
  • Resets feet during play to combat counters
  • Quick to process stunts and twists from defensive linemen
  • Natural flexibility and covers a lot of space in pass sets

Negatives

  • Footwork in pass protection can be sloppy and requires polish
  • Knocked off balance when feet don't match his upper body
  • Can dive too low as a run blocker and lose leverage
  • Has trouble flipping hips to mirror speed off the edge

Bottom line

Thomas offers production and elite upside that can't be matched. Already a top-tier run blocker, the unanimous All-American is a good offensive line coach away from quickly developing into an elite pass-protector as well. Even though his feet were all over the place at Georgia, the powerful blocker still somehow halted college football's top pass-rushers. Imagine what he can do when he puts all his tools together. With a unique blend of size, length, strength, and football IQ, Thomas can thrive in any scheme as a Day 1 starter.

Grade: Top 15

3. Tristan Wirfs

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School: Iowa
Height: 6-5
Weight: 320 lbs

Positives

  • Impressive athleticism and movement skills
  • Good initial quickness out of his stance in pass and run
  • Processes stunts and blitzes quickly to pick up/pass assignment
  • Strong punch when intersecting at set point
  • Good strength in anchor with athleticism to reset and recover
  • Lateral agility to mirror pass-rushers
  • Movement and footwork to thrive executing zone concepts
  • Climbs well to the second level off combo blocks
  • Excellent awareness when deployed as blocker in space

Negatives

  • Susceptible to inside counters due to oversets when pushed vertically
  • Inconsistent push as drive blocker vs. head-up defender
  • Needs better hand placement to sustain blocks
  • Must improve angles to targets at second level

Bottom line

Intelligent, athletic, and strong, Wirfs has all the qualities of a top-tier starter at the next level. With the processing ability he shows to diagnose what's unfolding in front of him, the athleticism to establish position for all kinds of blocks, and the strength and technique to finish, he should have no issues making an instant and long-lasting impact on an NFL offensive line. A tendency to overset and expose an inside path to the quarterback has some suggesting he could move to guard, where he'd be a fantastic pro, but the traits he possesses also suggest he's more than capable of addressing concerns and remaining on the outside with the help of NFL coaching.

Grade: 1st round

4. Mekhi Becton

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School: Louisville
Height: 6-7
Weight: 364 lbs

Positives

  • Massive frame with good length and build
  • Outstanding athlete for his size
  • Heavy, powerful hands in pass and run game
  • Good angles, depth on pass set to intersect
  • Excellent strength in base to anchor vs. power
  • Generates good push on drives and doubles
  • Foot speed and movement ability for zone blocks
  • Good movement to second level and in screen game

Negatives

  • Poor hand placement leads to inefficient punch
  • Looks to win reps with initial contact instead of locking out
  • Needs patience in pass set to avoid opening up to the outside
  • Must improve target angles at second level
  • Slow processing on stunts and games up front
  • Has to better look for blocks and play through whistle
  • Pad level is consistently too high

Bottom line

Becton is a freak of nature. Players his size with his strength and power simply aren't supposed to move the way he does, and those rare gifts give him as much upside as any offensive line prospect in this draft. He'll need some technical development, particularly when it comes to sustaining blocks rather than trying to knock his opponent off his feet on first contact - that won't work too often in the NFL. But Becton's got all the tools to make it happen, and could be the rare talent who can beat you to a spot and be a difference-maker out in space.

Grade: 1st round

5. Lucas Niang

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School: TCU
Height: 6-6
Weight: 315 lbs

Positives

  • Great length and athleticism
  • Good foot speed and movement in all areas
  • Solid hand placement and strength to lock out
  • Lateral agility to mirror in pass protection
  • Processing to pass off stunts and pick up blitzes
  • Power to create push as drive-blocker in run game
  • Footwork to reach and steer in zone run game
  • Good awareness in space

Negatives

  • Top-heavy build with slender lower half
  • Needs to improve footwork in pass protection
  • Wastes movement out of stance with false step
  • Tendency to overextend and lose leverage
  • Coming off season-ending hip injury

Bottom line

Niang isn't getting as much attention as he should be as one of the more well-rounded tackle prospects in the class. The need for improved footwork and avoiding false steps out of his stance are the only things that stand out as concerns in his game. And considering how fluid he looks in all other areas - including when he could fire into a vertical kick slide before a hip injury limited him to a less efficient backpedal in 2019 - those areas may actually be less of a project than many expect. Niang's an intelligent lineman whose combination of power and movement ability will make him a fit in any blocking scheme.

Grade: Rounds 1-2

6. Austin Jackson

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School: USC
Height: 6-5
Weight: 322 lbs

Positives

  • Projectable size and athleticism
  • Good foot speed in pass sets and run game
  • Lateral agility to mirror pass-rushers
  • Athleticism to recover and fight through rep
  • Climbs to second level and zeroes in on target

Negatives

  • Inefficient angles into pass sets
  • Wide hand placement gives defender leverage
  • Gets caught overextending and bending at the waist
  • Struggles to generate push in running game
  • Needs to develop more functional strength

Bottom line

Jackson has plenty of tools you can't teach, highlighted by his foot speed, lateral agility, and overall athletic explosiveness. He needs some technical work, and adding strength would make him more consistently effective anchoring against power rushes and as a run-blocker. The raw traits are there, and with some development he'll have every opportunity to find work as a scheme-versatile long-term starter at either tackle spot.

Grade: 2nd round

7. Josh Jones

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School: Houston
Height: 6-5
Weight: 319 lbs

Positives

  • Intriguing blend of size and athleticism
  • Flashes raw functional strength
  • Fluid movement into pass set
  • Good lateral agility to mirror rushers
  • Strength in anchor to recover and reset
  • Foot speed, lateral movement for zone concepts
  • Efficient climbing to second level and in space

Negatives

  • Extremely raw with overall technique
  • Slow to process stunts and blitzes
  • False steps and wasted movements into pass sets
  • Must improve angles in pass protection
  • Sloppy hand placement allows opponent inside frame

Bottom line

An impressive athlete in a prototypical frame, Jones is everything offensive line coaches are looking for from a physical standpoint. With the right development, he could be an impact player. It could take plenty of work, though, as he'll need to improve his overall technique and his processing ability to better diagnose what the defense is throwing at him. Overall, Jones is a high-upside prospect, his potential payoff likely making him worthy of an early round selection.

Grade: 2nd round

8. Isaiah Wilson

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School: Georgia
Height: 6-6
Weight: 350 lbs

Positives

  • Massive frame with great length
  • Good initial quickness out of his stance
  • Decent foot speed for his size
  • Heavy hands for a potentially dominant punch
  • Strength in base for a solid anchor
  • Powerful downhill drive blocker in the run game
  • Good leg drive through block for extra push
  • Foot movement to steer defender out of gap

Negatives

  • Unrefined footwork in pass protection
  • Struggles to match speed to the edge
  • Compensates by opening up and exposing inside
  • Inconsistent hand placement wastes length
  • Slow to process and adjust assignment as necessary
  • Poor lateral agility and change of direction
  • Not overly effective as a blocker in space

Bottom line

Wilson's an imposing right tackle with the potential to dominate at the next level. He's got plenty of work to do, particularly as it pertains to his footwork in pass protection and his overall hand placement when first engaging, but it's reasonable to expect that he can improve with NFL coaching. Successfully doing so in an offensive system that primarily utilizes gap-blocking principles will help him make the most of his intriguing combination of size, length, and power. Wilson has exactly the kind of upside teams should be looking for in a Day 2 pick on the offensive line.

Grade: Rounds 2-3

Other notable prospects

Prince Tega Wanogho (Auburn)
Ezra Cleveland (Boise State)
Matt Peart (Connecticut)
Saahdiq Charles (LSU)
Ben Bartch (St. John's Minn.)
Jack Driscoll (Auburn)

Interior linemen

1. Cesar Ruiz, C

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School: Michigan
Height: 6-3
Weight: 307 lbs

Positives

  • Just 20 years old - has room to grow into frame and develop
  • Excellent core strength and anchor
  • Excels as a pass-blocker
  • Explosive out of his stance and into defensive linemen
  • Good movement skills and lateral quickness
  • Strong hands to lock into defenders
  • Natural bender who wins leverage battles
  • Recognizes defensive movement and blitzes
  • Fantastic balance to thrive at second level
  • Plays with violent hands and nasty demeanor

Negatives

  • Could add size and strength to his frame
  • Doesn't possess ideal length
  • Tends to whiff in the run game by leaning forward

Bottom line

This year's class of interior offensive linemen lacks a Quenton Nelson or Zack Martin-type prospect, but there's plenty to love about Ruiz's game. The Michigan standout fits perfectly into a modern-day offense with his explosive athleticism and ability to block on the move. In a zone-blocking scheme, he'll thrive as a Day 1 starter. Ruiz has some technique to work on in the run game, but his NFL projection is easy thanks to his already developed pass-blocking skills. He's only getting better.

Grade: Rounds 1-2

2. Jonah Jackson, G

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School: Ohio State
Height: 6-3
Weight: 306 lbs

Positives

  • Good size with ability to play guard or center
  • Very smart blocker - always knows where blitzes and stunts are coming and reacts accordingly
  • Excellent production in pass protection
  • Advanced recovery skills - technique allows him to reset his hands and feet well when initially beaten off the line
  • Good lateral quickness and ability to pull
  • Flexible and fluid hips to stymie gap-shooters
  • Wide base helps him absorb contact and stay balanced

Negatives

  • Doesn't possess ideal frame or length for position
  • Below-average raw strength and ability to drive defenders in the run game
  • Loses leverage in the run game due to high pad level

Bottom line

A transfer from Rutgers in 2019, Jackson used his final college campaign to polish his overall technique. His skills in that department make his game extremely translatable to the pros. The third-team All-American likely won't ever truly dominate in the run game, but has the balance, awareness, and short-area agility to excel as a pass-blocker. In a league with numerous elite defensive tackles, it's a coveted skill set. While he can play in any offense, placing Jackson in a zone scheme would allow him to play in space.

Grade: 2nd round

3. Nick Harris, C

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School: Washington
Height: 6-1
Weight: 302 lbs

Positives

  • Four years of starting experience
  • Thrives in space - arguably the top blocker on the move in this class
  • Gets low and consistently wins leverage battle
  • Quick, strong hands give him early advantage post-snap
  • Hands are always moving in the run game to reset and recover
  • Excellent balance and core strength
  • Extremely fluid in close quarters and at the second level
  • Very good awareness to adjust to defensive front
  • Good play strength

Negatives

  • Very undersized with short arms
  • Wide base in pass protection makes it difficult for him to adjust
  • Won't offer scheme or position versatility
  • Grabby when beaten off the line by defender

Bottom line

Harris isn't the most versatile lineman prospect in this year's class, but his trump card will get the former Washington blocker in the starting lineup early in his career. Teams looking for a center who excels on pulls and in space will target the first-team All-Pac-12 selection. Harris mixes lateral agility, explosive athleticism, and high football IQ to thrive in zone-blocking schemes. If you can get over his size and length deficiencies, the former Washington blocker is a talented prospect.

Grade: Rounds 2-3

4. Netane Muti, G

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School: Fresno State
Height: 6-3
Weight: 315 lbs

Positives

  • Elite raw strength and power at the point of attack
  • Plays with aggression and nasty demeanor
  • Hands are consistently strong and well placed
  • Functional athleticism to cover ground after the snap and climb to the second level
  • Short-area quickness leads to immediate advantage on pass sets
  • Nearly impossible to shed his block when on the move
  • Core strength to stop all bull rushes

Negatives

  • Last two seasons were cut short by lower-body injuries
  • Not very explosive off the snap
  • Below-average length for position
  • Not nearly as effective in space as in a phone booth

Bottom line

Muti is one of the more intriguing prospects in this year's group of offensive linemen. The powerful blocker has true highlight-reel tape that displays strong hands and solid agility for his size. However, Muti's biggest red flag is his durability. He's only played one full season of college football and was never able to illustrate his growth at Fresno State. If healthy, Muti has the ability to thrive as a run-blocker and pass-protector in the pros. That's a big if, but we'd be willing to take a chance on his upside.

Grade: Rounds 2-3

5. Lloyd Cushenberry III, C

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School: LSU
Height: 6-3
Weight: 312 lbs

Positives

  • Thick frame with upper- and lower-body strength
  • Elite anchor - will not lose to bull rush
  • Long arms allow him to easily lock in defenders
  • Understands run lanes and how to be first to his gap
  • Very good hand placement and powerful punch
  • Surprisingly fluid hips fire off stance to open lanes for rushers

Negatives

  • Heavy feet make him awkward and inconsistent in space
  • Subpar recovery skills in pass protection
  • Had trouble versus explosive interior defenders who were able to get to his outside edge
  • Can overset and lunge in the run game
  • Pass-blocking footwork needs polish

Bottom line

Cushenberry meets the eye test for nearly every NFL team, possessing ideal length, anchor, and strength for the position. The LSU standout will outmuscle even the largest nose tackles and pairs his powerful frame with high football IQ. That's not to say there aren't lapses in his game. Cushenberry's footwork in pass protection must improve in order for him to develop into a starting center. Explosive rushers were able to get around him too often in college. If a good offensive line coach gets his hands on Cushenberry, he can turn his raw tools into consistent production.

Grade: 3rd round

6. Tyler Biadasz, C

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School: Wisconsin
Height: 6-4
Weight: 314 lbs

Positives

  • One of college football's top run-blockers over the last two seasons
  • Excellent movement skills to meet linebackers at second level
  • Extremely high awareness of post-snap movement along defensive line
  • Light feet and quick hands after snapping the ball
  • Led college football's top rushing attack
  • Excels on double teams

Negatives

  • Major pass-blocking regression in 2019 after excellent 2018 season
  • Average size, frame, and athleticism
  • Concerning balance - was thrown off his spot against strong defenders
  • Habit of overextending in pass protection and leaning in the run game

Bottom line

Biadasz flirted with declaring for the NFL draft following the 2018 campaign and likely made the incorrect decision by returning to school. Despite being named an All-American last season, the Badgers blocker declined as a pass-protector in 2019. Before we bury him, it must be noted that Biadasz is already a top-tier run blocker who mixes effortless movement skills with explosion off the snap and well-timed aggression. The accomplished center's stock won't be as high as it was at this time last year, but his weaknesses aren't as noticeable as they would be elsewhere on the offensive line.

Grade: 3rd round

Other notable prospects

Matt Hennessy (Temple)
Damien Lewis (LSU)
Robert Hunt (Louisiana-Lafayette)
Shane Lemieux (Oregon)
John Simpson (Clemson)
Ben Bredeson (Michigan)

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2020 NFL Draft prospect rankings: Offensive line
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