It’s the seventh round. Surely the time has come for some depth at cornerback or safety, right? Like 2013, there was a run on the positions early on, leaving a wide gap between the first and second round talent and the leftovers.
And the pick…a guard. Ulrick John out of Georgia State (6-5, 288). John, who didn’t participate in the combine, actually played left tackle for the Panthers last season, and has lined up at every position – including center.
He’s a bit undersized, especially considering the type of line the Colts are building, but beyond that, we know very little of him. So, here’s his profile from DraftInsider.net (not easy to find info on this guy):
Positive: Versatile three-year starter who’s lined up at tackle, center, and guard. Quickly sets up off the snap, display solid footwork, and the ability to slide out off the edge. Stays square, fights with his hands throughout the action, and keeps the defender in front of him. Strong enough to turn defenders from the action and opens holes for the running game. Keeps his feet moving on contact, blocks with a nasty attitude, and works hard. Works well with linemen and effectively recognizes stunts or blitzes thrown by the opposition.
Negative: Does not sink his butt at the line of scrimmage nor is he a true knee bender. Does a bit of overextending into blocks and too much clutching of opponents. Not an agile lineman and struggles to finish blocks.
Analysis: John was very productive the Georgia State and comes with a nice degree of upside. He must start doing the little things well but the ability to play three separate positions on the offensive line gives him an upper hand to make an NFL roster.
John’s biggest issue might be his size. He has a long frame that can support some weight gain, and he’s apparently a hard worker with good technique. John will probably need to add a few pounds for the NFL, but if he finds himself playing center, he may not need to be a big bruiser, just 300-pounder.
Here’s a rather long scouting video of Ulrick John playing left tackle versus JMU:
Puzzling or not, the draft is over. Time to see if some NFL dreams are going to come true. Who’s ready for training camp?