Jeff Saturday 6-2 300
AQ Shipley 6-1 304
I give you those states for two reasons.
1) I believe this is the ideal size for a starting center in the NFL
2) See number one
After watching the combine with the O lineman all day Saturday, I came away with one glaring ray of hope for us. AQ Shipley is going to be someone's starting center in the next two years and it should be us because of this reason. He can be had in the fourth round allowing us to concentrate on starters the first three rounds and taking care of this need for the long haul.
I bring Jeff Saturday into the post for this reason.
The Indianapolis Colts were unable to hammer out a contract extension with center Jeff Saturday, who now plans to enter free agency on Friday.
Saturday was signed as a free agent out of North Carolina by the Baltimore Ravens before being waived in 1998. The Colts picked him up and he has been their starting center for nine years.
Before Tim Grunhard played for the Chiefs, we picked up Mike Webster for a couple of years. Tim was able to tutor under Mike and became a very valuable and serviceable player for us for the next 11 years. I believe the same thing can happen with Saturday/Shipley. Not only are we getting smart, tough and good players that are good people, but we are making good decisions in the draft. One of the things Mike Mayock said about Shipley, even though Penn State was losing by thirty in the last quarter, Shipley was still in Ray Maualuga's face the entire game pushing him around. He never knows when to quit. He looked damn good in the drills at the combine and I think this is the sleeper of the O line. Unger is probably going to end up a guard for someone and I dont have a problem getting him with the 2nd round pick also. But it just makes since to take the Shipley option with the 4th. If we don't he'll be gone by the fifth. If we were to gain an extra 4th somehow he could still be available depending on the position of that pick. Even at this point I think Shipley is a better center than Niswanger, because Shipley is a natural at that position.
Shipley manned the pivot for the Nittany Lions for every game the past three years. He earned the 2008 Rimington Trophy as the nation's best center after garnering first-team All-Big Ten honors the past two seasons. His leadership off the field and toughness on the field makes him the type of character player NFL teams look for.