This Year, the National football league mock drafting world expressed shock and awe that Iowa left tackle Bryan Bulaga was still being available once the Eco-friendly Bay Packers drafted him at No. 23 overall. 2 yrs later, we have seen similar expressions of surprise that another Iowa left tackle, Riley Reiff, was still being available once the Detroit Lions drafted him at, yes, No. 23 overall.
What is the common theme here? I am almost embarrassed for the overall game, but here goes: Arm length.
The arms of both Bulaga and Reiff measured at 33 1/4 inches at their particular scouting combines, a couple of 3/4 inches shorter than National football league teams would ideally want to see them. I understand you may shake your mind, but after poking around a little Friday, Personally i think certain that Reiff -- who had been a great player inside a major conference of school football -- will not have managed to get towards the Lions' place if his arms were longer.
You may remember my rant about this subject soon after Bulaga's arrival within this division. I realize the worth that lengthy arms provide -- namely, creating distance from the pass rusher to assist maintain leverage -- however i won't believe that it is a make-or-break attribute. Work and technique must always trump it, right?
The Packers did not help my argument by moving Bulaga to right tackle, where he most probably faces less gifted pass-rushers and therefore does not need arms as lengthy. (It's surprising I simply authored that sentence.) Lions coach Jim Schwartz stated Reiff projects like a left tackle, however i suppose it is possible he could consume a similar path as Bulaga by filling out and ultimately settling right into a different position.
Hopefully we have learned our lesson. Reiff was forecasted like a top-15 pick while he was considered the draft's second-best tackle, and that is where gamers of this regard in the past are selected. Then when completing our mock drafts later on years, I would recommend we have a roll call of arm length before setting first-round order. Bear in mind your dinosaur history. T-Rex was pretty, pretty nasty from things i understand.
In most importance, I do not think arm length was the only real reason almost 24 gamers were from the board before Reiff was drafted. But you are kidding yourself if you feel it had not been area of the evaluation. Sometimes, National football league test candidates get too swept up in measureables for his or her own good.
From my perspective, it had been the Lions' gain. Even when Reiff is not the Lions' lengthy-term answer at left tackle, they were given an excellent player in a value place within the first round.