2014 NFL Draft: Taylor Lewan Scouting Report

One of the coolest pregame intros in all of college football - Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Another dominant tackle from the Wolverines?

Welcome to the 2014 edition of the Titans draft class scouting report series.

Player name: Taylor Lewan

H/W: 6'7 309

Position: OT

School/Class: Michigan RS Senior

Measureables: 4.87 40, 30.5" vertical, 117" broad jump, 7.39 3 cone drill

The Tape:

Notre Dame 2012

vs Clowney 2013 Outback Bowl

Notre Dame 2013

2012 Alabama

Pros:

  • A great athlete - Lewan was the best athlete in the offensive lineman category at the Combine.
  • Mirror, Mirror on the wall - He is very adept at mirroring the defender and anticipating the counter move. Possesses quick feet and strong hands to keep defenders at bay once they get close. Hand usage is pretty good, knows how to keep them within the limits of holding. Uses length to a sufficient degree as well.
  • Well rounded blocker - He's one of the more well rounded tackles in the class. Can handle most pass rush moves as he's seen a lot of them over his career. The true definition of a road grader playing tackle. Won't back down to anyone. Football IQ is high after growing up and toning down the stupid mistakes like false starts. Intimidating force of nature that won't give up on blocking assignment until the whistle and sometimes after it.

Cons:

  • Plays too high at times - Like many tall tackles, Lewan comes out of his stance too high and that can exploited by pass rushers. What I mean is, that by coming out of his stance too high, it allows for the pass rusher to get into him and merely push him aside. This is glaringly evident in the Notre Dame 2012 tape around the 2 minute mark when Prince Shembo just goes by him like he doesn't exist. However, this is can be corrected with coaching.
  • Extracurricular activities - As Lewan improved on his mental mistakes, the amount of extracurricular stuff that get called for personal fouls went up. Some say he's dirty. It's all well and good that he shows some passion but there is a limit and it doesn't take much for NFL refs to reach it. The only entity that should collect his checks needs to be a bank and not the league office (yeah I know it goes to charity but charitable donations should be on personal time, and not based on fines)
  • Off field Issues - Mr. Stearns from Maize N Brew did a nice breakdown of his off field incidents here so I won't get into it too much.

Additional notes:

I felt after watching the Michigan offense on tape and live, that it was a joke in terms of talent and downright offensive play calling by deposed OC Al Borges. The way that Lewan managed to survive the shortcomings of a sputtering and incompetent offense around him speaks volumes about his talent. Denard Robinson and Devin Gardner were doomed to failure even before they started.

Summary

Yes I know tackle wasn't a top priority after the signing of Michael Oher but potential franchise left tackles don't grow on trees. Long time Titans stalwart left tackle Michael Roos is approaching 32 and is on the last year of his deal. Lewan seems like a controversial pick now but he could take over at left next year after being groomed as the heir to Roos in 2014. A ready made franchise defining starter at left tackle once the veteran leaves is never a bad thing. The Titans could have one of the youngest and best offensive lines in football in short order. I love this pick.

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