Could ’14 draft be repeat of ’13 at OT?

Posted by Chris Brown on March 19, 2014 – 11:42 am

As we profiled in first installment of our On The Clock series driven by Michelin and Dunn Tire this morning – The Rise of the Right Tackle – the 2013 NFL draft saw four tackles go off the board in the first 12 picks and all three started their careers at right tackle. This spring three offensive tackles could all come off the board before the draft is out of the top 10. Texas A&M’s Jake Matthews, Michigan’s Taylor Lewan and Auburn’s Greg Robinson are the three prized prospects to anchor down important edge roles for NFL offenses.

Many consider Texas A&M’s Jake Matthews to be the most polished of the top three tackles, something Matthews doesn’t mind hearing.

“Being considered a polished player, someone who’s done a lot and played well in my life, I’ll take that as a (compliment),” he said. “At the same time, I still feel like there’s a lot I can get better at. Definitely wouldn’t say I’m at my peak – a lot more I can learn, a lot more I can get better at. So all those things (are) stuff that’s motivating me, and I’m just trying to prove I am capable of being the best lineman.”

Though Auburn’s Greg Robinson is considered raw by comparison, some believe his ceiling as an NFL tackle is higher than Matthews.

“I’m not at full potential right now. I still have a lot to go,” he said. “I started last year was my first season starting. Like the guys they have ahead of me like Jake Matthews, he started since he was a freshman. That’s just something I feel I need to prove.’’

And Michigan’s Taylor Lewan is more athletic than given credit for, though more are coming around to his agility and power combination following a strong combine workout. Many also like his on field demeanor as he brings a nasty demeanor to his game.

“I like to think I’m very consistent and I play through the whistle,” said Lewan. “That’s one of my weaknesses, too, as everybody likes to comment on. But no doubt about it, I like to play through the whistle and do whatever I can to put people in the dirt as much as possible.”

It was thought that a fourth tackle could go in the top 15 as Alabama’s Cyrus Kouandjio was considered a dark horse for the top half of round one, but concerns surrounding a knee surgery may change that.

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Posted in Inside the Bills

Dr. Andrews on OT Kouandjio’s knee

Posted by Chris Brown on March 6, 2014 – 3:09 pm

Renowned orthopedist Dr. James Andrews is refuting the reports that came out during the NFL Combine about Alabama OT prospect Cyrus Kouandjio’s surgically repaired knee. Reports last month indicated that several teams failed Kouandjio on his physical due to a “botched surgery” on Kouandjio’s knee after he tore his ACL and MCL his freshman year. Andrews said that’s simply not the case.’s Jason LaCanfora is reporting that Andrews has proclaimed Kouandjio’s knee as fit and healthy. Andrews, who is based in Alabama works closely with the Alabama program and has been monitoring Kouandjio’s knee since he enrolled in Tuscaloosa.

Kouandjio played in every game his college career and according to the report never missed a practice or needed extra treatment in the training room.

Now Kouandjio must improve his workout numbers at the Alabama pro day next Wednesday March 12th to re-establish himself as a first-round caliber offensive tackle in the 2014 NFL draft.

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OT Kouandjio fails physical for some teams

Posted by Chris Brown on February 22, 2014 – 4:16 pm


He’s been widely considered a top five offensive tackle, but according to Alabama OT Cyrus Kouandjio has failed his physical here with some teams in the medical exams at the NFL Combine due to some unfortunate circumstances.’s Ian Rapaport said the tackle has a knee condition.

Kouandjio tore his ACL his freshman year and apparently the surgery was not a success with respect to the long term. It could cost him millions. Unfortunate.

For more Combine coverage presented by NAPA Auto Parts, click here.

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When OT Kouandjio felt like a taco

Posted by Chris Brown on February 21, 2014 – 6:38 pm

Alabama OT Cyrus Kouandjio is a giant man. Measuring in at 6’7″ and 322 pounds he’s a fit offensive lineman. Knowing the medical exams are taken very seriously by all 32 NFL clubs, he knew his time in the exam room on Thursday was going to be lengthy.

That’s because in his true freshman season, Kouandjio tore his ACL. Any NFL prospect that has had a major injury is going to get worked over in the exam room and Kouandjio was no different.

In fact the Alabama tackle was poked and prodded so much that he had no time to do media interviews on Thursday. He didn’t step into the NFL media room until Friday afternoon.

“Yeah, they were tweaking me,” Kouandjio said. “Actually I was laying in an MRI machine for two hours and 30 minutes. I felt like a taco.”

For those that haven’t experienced the MRI machine it surrounds a patient’s entire body. They’re put on a backboard that slides into a short cylindrical tunnel. Fortunately for Kouandjio no teams found his knee to be an issue of concern.

“No issues,” he said. “I got some sleep in there. That first night we get, like, two or three hours of sleep. So I got a good two hours and 30 minutes in the taco.”

At 6’7” 322 pounds that’s one heck of a taco.

For more Combine coverage presented by NAPA Auto Parts, click here.

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Winner of the eyeball test

Posted by Chris Brown on February 21, 2014 – 3:09 pm

It’s only been two days of NFL Combine coverage here in Indianapolis, but the eyeball test may be locked up already by an offensive tackle.

Alabama LT Cyrus Kouandjio is put together. He measured in Friday at 6’7″ and 322 pounds. The scary thing is he has a similar body type to that of Bills Hall of Famer Bruce Smith. He looks like he’s chiseled out of stone and doesn’t even have love handles. Folks 98 percent of offensive linemen have love handles. Here’s a look at my winner for the eyeball test at the NFL Combine.

Kouandjio is forecast as a mid to late first round pick.

Cyrus Kouandjio

For more Combine coverage presented by NAPA Auto Parts, click here.

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