#24 Andre Dillard, Offensive Tackle Washington State
One of the most difficult offensive line prospects to evaluate is Andre Dillard. Last season, Washington State threw the ball more than any other team in the country and had the least amount of rushing attempts. Thus, it’s hard to get an accurate gauge on Dillard’s run blocking abilities. However, his pass blocking abilities make him a potential first round pick.
Dillard has great feet that allow him to kick slide well and match defensive linemen’s speed. He also is a smart player and quickly recognizes who’s blitzing and picks up defenders that delay blitzes. On quick passing plays, he has a strong punch that stuns defensive linemen and helps keep their hands down. At times, he will get caught leaning and reaching in pass protection, which NFL pass rushers will take advantage of. He needs to learn to play with his chest up and trust the good feet he possesses. He isn’t an impact blocker and isn’t as physical as most offensive line coaches would like. He is more of a speed bump than a roadblock, meaning he’ll get in defenders way, but won’t finish blocks with them on the ground. With how much emphasis NFL offenses are putting on the passing game though, Dillard could be exactly what teams are looking for in a tackle.
Fit for the Raiders
Had the Raiders not drafted Kolton Miller in the first round last season and signed Trent Brown this year, Dillard would be a great fit for the team. While Oakland can use help on the offensive line, they need help at guard, not tackle and he has given no indications that a move to guard is in his future. If the Raiders end up taking him in the first round, that would indicate they are not confident in Miller.
The Texans ranked dead last in sacks last season. If Houston wants to protect their investment in quarterback Deshaun Watson, it would be wise to draft an offensive lineman that can keep him upright. In recent years, the Seahawks have had their struggles on the offensive line and at one point they were literally starting a power forward at left tackle (George Fant). Seattle still needs help on the offensive line and this year, they don’t even have to look out of state to find help. Offensive tackle Jason Peters is 37-years old, so his playing days are numbered. The Eagles offensive line has been a strength over the last few years, and they would be wise to ensure that is upheld in the future by drafting Dillard.