6’3 313 pounds
5.31 40 yard dash, 30 bench press reps, 29.0 vertical jump
John Urschel’s biggest strength is his intelligence. Urschel possesses this intelligence on and off the field. The Penn State graduate received the William V. Campbell trophy as the nation’s premier college football scholar athlete and graduated with a 4.0 GPA. He also won the James E. Sullivan Award, given to the nation’s top amateur athlete. On the football field, Urschel is smart, balanced player who is quick to engage while run blocking. While he doesn’t possess ideal quickness, he can pull and trap with ease, and also work towards the second level.
Experience is another strength for the Nittany Lion guard, as he was a three-year starter. Urschel acted as a team captain in his time at Penn State and has strong character and intangibles. Finally, as is the case with Allen Robinson, Urschel benefits from the experience in Bill O’Brien’s pro-style offense.
The Williamsville, New York product lacks the ideal size for an NFL caliber offensive lineman. Urschel has short arms and lacks explosive push off the line. While Urschel showed off good strength at the combine, his strength on the field doesn’t show as well. The two-time All-Big Ten selection can get pushed back in pass protection and isn’t quick enough to initiate contact with quicker defensive tackles. Urschel also makes the mistake of letting defenders cross his face and struggles to recover.
While his size and speed limitations affect his draft stock, Urschel is the kind of smart, scrappy player that can stick on with a team as a reserve lineman off the bat. He’s got the drive and intelligence to emerge as a solid guard in the right system. Urschel will be best suited to a zone blocking scheme and could even end up as a center in the NFL. I expect Urschel to be selected on Day 3 of the 2014 NFL Draft. Although I believe it will, if things don’t work out for Urschel in the NFL, the man will surely be successful in whatever he pursues.
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