The Cleveland Browns had a really promising 2018 NFL season. This offseason will be an important moment for the future of the franchise. The Browns will use the 2019 NFL Draft to continue the development of the team and hopefully catapult the franchise to the next level.
Here at WFNY, we are getting you ready for the upcoming draft. In particular, Joe Gilbert and John Colosimo are examining each of the positions in the draft, giving their top five prospects in each position group, while also giving their thoughts on the overall class at each position.
The defensive side of the ball is done, so the duo is now moving to the offense. Joe and John begin with the offensive line, by examining the interior offensive linemen class in the next part of the position rankings series for the 2019 NFL Draft.
|Joe Gilbert’s Top 5 Interior Offensive Linemen||John Colosimo’s Top 5 Interior Offensive Linemen|
|1. C Garrett Bradbury, N.C. State||1. C Garrett Bradbury, N.C. State|
|2. G Chris Lindstrom, Boston College||2. G Cody Ford, Oklahoma|
|3. C Elgton Jenkins, Mississippi State||3. G Chris Lindstrom, B.C|
|4. C Erik McCoy, Texas A&M||4. G Drew Samia, Oklahoma|
|5. G Dru Samia, Oklahoma||5. C Erik McCoy, Texas A&M|
Best of the Rest: G Connor McGovern (Penn State), G Beau Benzschawel (Wisconsin) and G/C Ross Pierschbacher (Alabama)
Which interior offensive lineman do you feel stronger about than most people?
Joe: I really like center Elgton Jenkins of Mississippi State. He is a player with great length for a center with the ability to control blockers with his strong arms. He has shown the versatility to play multiple positions on the line, which gives him more value as an offensive lineman. Jenkins has solid movement skills, too. He was highly productive in college.
John: Nate Davis, Charlotte. Small School guy transitioning inside with a good frame, I think he shows a lot of promise on the inside once he gets his feet wet in the NFL and it slows down for him.
Who is your No. 1 interior offensive lineman in the class and why do you believe he is the best interior offensive lineman?
Joe: Center Garrett Bradbury of N.C. State is my No. 1 interior offensive lineman. He is a smooth lineman with great athleticism. His best asset is his ability to move his body in the right position to shield the defender away from the ball carrier. When faced with an oncoming rusher, he shows excellent strength to catch and control the rusher without giving up much ground. He is just a clean technician in the trenches.
John: Bradbury for me as well. He tested incredibly well at the combine which just cemented his status coming into the draft. He appears to be one of the safest picks in the draft and a guy who will play right away and likely for a decade as your rock in the middle of the line.
What are your thoughts on the overall interior offensive lineman class? How would you rate the class?
Joe: I think this is a solid class of interior offensive lineman. It has good depth both at guard and center. I do not see an elite talent like last season, but there are first round linemen in this year’s class. There could be even more talent in this class if tackles like Cody Ford and Dalton Risner are moved inside. I believe they can be tackles, but many experts believe they are better suited inside. Nonetheless, this class will produce many productive interior offensive linemen.
John: Excellent class of interior offensive lineman, particularly if Cody Ford slides inside eventually. The Browns dont need one so it will go largely unnoticed in Cleveland, but if you have a need this is a good year to address it.
Who has the best single skill set and what is that skill set?
Joe: I think Garrett Bradbury’s body positioning is the best skill set in the class. Bradbury is a great athlete and he uses this athleticism to put himself in the best position to win the rep. He shows good awareness to know where the ball is on the field and to move himself in position to get between the defender and the ball carrier. He is just so smooth in this ability.
John: Cody Ford’s general nastiness. While not quite to the level of the Colts’ Nelson a year ago, Cody wants to finish you off and it shows on film. I love that in an offensive lineman.
Who is a sleeper interior offensive lineman who you are keeping an eye on?
Joe: Nate Davis of Charlotte is a player from a school who you should definitely keep an eye on in this class. He is a versatile lineman with the experience of playing both tackle and guard. Davis has a lot of power and is built really well in the weight department. He shows the ability to overpower defenders and to be a real road grader in the run game.
John: Stole my thunder Joe. I agree, Nate Davis is the guy someone may get a steal with.
What is the impact of this interior offensive lineman class to the Browns?
Joe: With the talk of Kevin Zeitler being on the possible trading block, the Browns could definitely be in the market for an interior offensive lineman. But if they stick with what they had last season, the Browns are set at the position, making this class as less impactful to the Browns.
John: Pretty low. It will be interesting to see if the Browns continue the Green Bay method of drafting offensive lineman, which was generally only drafting college tackles, and once in a while a center. The Browns don’t have an immediate need and used the 33rd pick last season on an interior lineman, so dont expect much in the way of interior lineman in this draft.