From the FanPosts -Joel
The draft is a special occasion for me. Honestly, it's something of a holiday. I swear every year when it comes around I like it even more than the actual season.
It's over now, and we are now damned to the 2 1/2 months of awful crap that follows the draft but still is prior to training camp. Sure, I'll try to follow the CFL or whatever but I really won't care that much and I'll just sit around here with you guys repeating the same things day after day until we have something substantial to work with.
But back to the draft. You guys know I am a man of the trenches. I love my fullbacks, I love my halfbacks, I love my defensive linemen, and most of all I love my offensive linemen. So to begin, this draft was something of a bore to me. The prospect of Dee Ford playing with Tamba Hali, Justin Houston and Dontari Poe all at once intrigues me and Phillip Gaines is great or whatever (I really have no idea. That's someone's job to tell me).
But I was a little worried. It didn't help when the Chiefs drafted a tiny WR/RB (who I do in fact look forward to watching) next and then a QB (who I also approve of. More than anything I'm just a zombie and will like any pick if you give me time). I was worried that I might not have anyone to fawn over this offseason. Then John Dorsey and Andy Reid threw me a bone -- or two to be more specific.
G Zach Fulton for me was more pleasant than anything at the time, a familiar face who I was always fond of from a distance. I was big into Tennessee linemen Antonio Richardson (What the heck did he do, by the way?). Another Tennessee lineman JaWuan James was a guy I looked into as well. So I happened across Fulton by association. If you've ever watched film and seen someone aside from the guy you are watching keep sticking out, this is that guy to me. Fulton opened up holes and made very effective standout blocks on the regular, and I can distinctly remember thinking "DEFINITELY wouldn't mind No. 72 either" while watching Antonio Richardson against South Carolina.
OT Laurent Duvernay-Tardif (bienvenue a Kansas City!) is a guy who I've had something of a man-crush on since I was scouting prospects for 2014 CFL Draft (on Tuesday. RedBlacks FTW). He's ... hard to analyze to say the least. But you gotta love the guy. He's so much bigger, faster, stronger and more aggressive than his opposition that he is constantly putting defenders on their backs. Add in the fact that he can deliver twins and is bilingual and you just about have to root for him.
I'm gonna examine these guys from whatever I can find and save you guys the time and effort.
Zach Fulton, G, Tennessee
6'5, 324 pounds
5.16 40-yard dash
25 reps of bench press
24.5 inch vertical
98.0 inch broad jump
7.87 3-cone drill
5.16 20 yard shuttle
Here's what NFL.com has to say....
Physically impressive, moldable right guard prospect with a good soldier's attitude to go along with untapped physical ability, though his tape falls short of his intangibles at this stage of his development. Could be a pet project for an offensive line coach confident he can turn Fulton into an effective mauler. -Nolan Nawrocki
Like I said, I've been something of a fan for a little while (although it is unfortunate that he doesn't breathe fire). However, I never focused exclusively on him as I am about to do here.
First thing I noticed is that he has a flatback stance. While it could be a coaching thing, the left guard does not have the same stance. A flatback stance with the hand forward often indicates that the offensive lineman is more confident run blocking than pass blocking. It's a good initial stance that I used because it allows you to come out of your stance hard and low.
He's not what I would call a finisher, and he's not particularly explosive. Normally this lends to a more pass-blocking oriented blocker but that is strangely not the case. He is not a lunger as his stance would indicate. He's very deliberate in his steps and above all else seeks to be in good position. While not extraordinarily quick he has good footwork and is much better than I expected at reach blocking or outside zone, even if it's against someone much quicker than he is. He never gets a narrow base and has a dense center of gravity so when reaching, pulling or just drive blocking he never loses ground and more often than not moves back his man. He's a powerful man who can flat out move people and push open running lanes. Tennessee likes to run off his hip and rarely are they disappointed. Against South Carolina, he played against All-SEC DT Kelcy Quarles. Fulton really handled him (he's the right guard in every clip).
His strength combined with footwork is a valuable asset in pass protection. He's almost impossible to bull rush and he's too smart for a lot of stunts or spin moves. A good tendency of his is to control half a man and shove him away from the quarterback going inside out. When he begins bearing down on his opponent in pass pro it's hard to get away. He is, however, not flawless and counter moves and the occasionally well-executed stunt does get past him. Missouri had the most success against him, as Michael Sam, Golden and Hartley often mixed up their approach (although it's also important to note that Mizzou brought their entire front seven on a lot of plays and Fulton wasn't the only one to mess up some).
Much more athletic than I anticipated from a guy of his size. It is not above him to pull around the corner or execute a quick trap against the defensive end (he pulled it off a few times against Jadeveon Clowney to good effect, although Clowney got him once). At the second level he's hard to be stuffed and is very good at shading away linebackers and shifting them away from the play. He does not dominate at the second level but is effective at creating a path for runners to run through and occasionally will give you a knockout block.
My biggest problem is that he does not use his hands very effectively. His punch is fairly weak and more than anything he "throws bumpers", meaning that he attempts to shove defenders with his shoulders and forearms like an old school lineman as opposed to a guy who can actually grab at a defender. This is often a sign of a guy with slow hands or unpolished handfighting ability. At guard, you can live with this to an extent. Down-blocking was a huge part of the Tennessee run game and he was able to pinball defenders out of the way with a well placed shoulder block more than once. When a linebacker comes screaming at him in the hole, he can throw a forearm and redirect him out of the rushing lane relatively well. When a defensive end thinks he got the tackle on an inside move he can knock him in the chops with a great chip well. He can lock horns with a big nose guard and win the butting battle eight times out of 10. But when someone attempts a counter move or really just utilizes a technique that is not expected, Fulton is prone to missing. And from time to time, especially on plays where he is asked to get to the second level, defenders fall off his blocks before they are out of the play. That is concerning but not a death sentence.
Overall, I love this guy even more after watching his film. He's a sixth rounder because he's not versatile and doesn't utilize his hands very well, but he's very effective at forcing open rushing lanes and if you want a guy who won't embarrass you in every other department he's a good option. Here's some of my favorite film of his in a blowout loss. Between this and South Carolina, I am torn.
McGill Athletics (via SB Nation)
Look I'm gonna be up front with you guys, I'm just about goddamn sick of writing Laurent Duvernay-Tardif's name. I know a lot of the older guys on here hate having fun with a game but we just about need a nickname with this dude. Here are some I like:
Wolverine (shoutout to Steve The Hedge)- "Ya know...cause he's a bad a** Canadian." This one's my favorite.
LDT .. Effective but geez ... Boring.
Dr. Delivered Twins\
Maple ... Syrup
The Beast from the Northeast
That's what I got for now. Feel free to leave your own in the comments.
6'5, 321 pounds
4.94 40-yard dash
37 bench press reps
31.5 inch vertical jump
126 inch broad jump
7.21 three-cone drill
1.71 10 yard shuttle
This guy is truly a freak. He's huge, strong, fast over long distances, short areas, and explosive in tiny spaces.
Here's what the Chiefs said about him...
Area Scout Pat Sperduto:
"We really found Larry at the East-West Shrine Game. He went down there and played. It was very surprising how big and athletic he was, and he was physical. He really just surprised us at how good of an athlete he was for such a big man."
In 2013, Duvernay-Tardif, a co-captain with the McGill Redmen, earned the Metras trophy, given to the most outstanding lineman in CIS football. He followed that by being one of two CIS players picked to play in the 2014 East-West Shrine Game.
Here's what NFL.com has to say...
Tough, gritty, smart battler who transformed from an impactful 250-pound three-technique as a freshman. Made a successful conversion to left tackle as a sophomore and has grown to be a dominating Canadian 315-pound left tackle expected to be the first pick of the CFL draft. Projects best inside in the pros and could prove to be the best product delivered from Canada's developmental system since Israel Idonije. Will require refinement, but has the physical tools and temperament that cannot be taught.-Nolan Nawrocki
Cool thing about him is that his frame is nowhere near filled out.
It's tough to find footage on him, period. Highlights are really all we have and while they obviously are favorable to the player it can still show tendencies or future problems.
He's a steamroller at that level to say the least. He's just so much better than the next guy that it isn't even fair. He's such an aggressive, tenacious blocker that even when he went and played in Bowl games with American rules his physicality stood out. He's massive, fast and explosive and truly has what I refer to as "The McDaniel Effect" -- an offensive lineman's ability to be able to flatback defenders.
That does work against him. While it didn't hurt him that much at that level, lunging is gonna be a problem at the next level. He will jump out of his stance with getting his feet under him and lose balance, and while in the CIS you can take a second to regain your footing in the NFL that ends with you on your back.
Just like most rookie offensive linemen from small schools, run-blocking will come to him easier than pass blocking. He overruns his defensive end upfield and at higher levels he could get murdered on inside moves. His feet occasionally stop and ideally you want them moving constantly on the outside. If he played inside that would help temper those problems a bit.
Here's a strangely spot-on former NFL comparison with just a few distinguishing characteristics.
Tony Mandarich! I know it's not exactly what you guys wanna hear but ...
- Both are Canadian.
- Both are 6'5, 315-320 pounds.
- Both are white guys.
- Mandarich had 36 bench press reps, Wolverine had one more.
- Mandarich ran a 4.65 40-yard dash unofficially, Moose had a fast 40, too.
- Very explosive blockers, demonstrate "The McDaniel Effect."
- Similar approaches to the game, very physical and enjoy imposing their will on their opponents.
- Watching film side by side it's rough to not see a visual similarity and a playstyle similarity.
The biggest difference is obviously that Mandarich was big into steroids and Wolverine is (hopefully) not. Another one is that Mandarich was a stupid, cocky piece of you-know-what and Tardif seems like a smart, stand-up guy.
I'm sorry if you guys wanted a little more, but I can't find a lot on him. If someone can, please hook me up. I know that I love the pick and the upside and look forward to training camp.
Well, I sure hope you guys liked the post and I can't wait to see the right guard competition at training camp this August between Rishaw Johnson, Zach Fulton and Wolveri- WHATTTTT??????????
*A NEW CHALLENGER APPROACHES*
6'4, 338 pounds
5.3 second 40-yard dash
31 bench press reps
26.5 inch vertical
8'10 broad jump
8.00 three-cone drill
1.84 10-yard shuttle
Not gonna go too deep into this one. I'm just gonna say I looked him up after the Chiefs picked him up, looked at the little game footage I could find and came away impressed. Powerful, surprisingly athletic, at times dominating even in Tulsa's bruising offensive scheme.
Check out the RG/RT No. 74 for these clips (a little old, sorry). I'll just go ahead and leave these here ....