There’s been some speculation that USC’s Ryan Kalil could slip all the way to the Bills at 10, with the growing belief that Minnesota will pass on him with the third overall pick. While I do believe the Vikings will pass on Kalil I can’t see the USC tackle falling all the way to 10.
SI.com’s Peter King brought up the idea of Kalil sliding in his Monday Morning QB column. I respect King as a journalist and his sources, but I just don’t see it happening. Apparently Mike Mayock doesn’t either. I asked him on a conference call late last week that if Kalil were to slip past the Vikings at 3 how far he could fall. Needless to say he knew what I was getting at.
“It depends a lot on what else happens, but I don’t think there’s any way in the world that he gets past seven,” Mayock told me. “Even if Tannehill goes, Kalil is one of the quote six blue chippers. So if Jacksonville is sitting there at seven and there’s a drop off in value between Kalil and whoever they have next on their board, they’ve got to take Kalil. I don’t think there’s any way he gets to 10.”
I agree with Mayock. Jacksonville’s new head coach Mike Mularkey is preaching toughness and hard-nosed play. Kalil is a pass protector first, but has some nasty to his game and can get to the second level with the agility to break down and lock onto D-Bs. Yes, the Jags have former first and second round picks manning their left and right tackle positions from their 2009 draft class in Eugene Monroe and Eben Britton. But Britton is coming off a back injury that landed him on I-R last season and the depth behind them is limited at best.
For a team that gave up the sixth-most sacks in the league last season (44) they would seemingly welcome an upgrade to a true franchise left tackle, especially with a young quarterback in Blaine Gabbert that’s going to need all the time he can get in the pocket in a new offensive system.
One last thing to keep in mind, Kalil has been a two-year starter at left tackle for USC. His teammate in 2010, who played at right tackle for the Trojans because Kalil was the left tackle, was Tyron Smith, who went ninth overall to Dallas in 2011 and then started 16 games at left tackle in the NFL as a rookie for the Cowboys and played well. Kalil will go sooner.
Final note, if I’m wrong and he’s on the board at 10, I’ll be doing a tap dance for the Bills.
Tags: 2012 NFL draft, Matt Kalil, Mike Mayock, Peter King, Tyron Smith
Posted in Inside the Bills