2016 NFL Draft Profile: OT Jack Conklin
By Matthew Ordazzo
In this 2016 NFL Draft profile, we take a look at the strengths and weaknesses of offensive tackle Jack Conklin out of Michigan State.
The son of a high school football coach, Conklin had all the tools and skills an offensive lineman needed to successfully make the transition from high school to college football. Conklin started 13 of 14 games for Michigan State in 2013, 10 at left tackle and three at right tackle, earning him multiple Freshman All-American honors. Everyone started taking notice of Conklin’s strength and toughness during his Sophomore season.
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Both league coaches and media named him a second-team Big Ten player at left tackle. Even though Conklin missed two games during his Junior year due to an apparent leg injury, he was still able to capture All-American recognition, in addition to consensus first-team All-big Ten honors for his ability to protect quarterback Connor Cook. Conklin’s leadership and skills on the line during his final year in East Lansing helped Michigan State capture a much desire Big-Ten championship.
Feb 26, 2016; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Michigan State Spartans offensive lineman Jack Conklin (11) and Stanford Cardinal offensive lineman Joshua Garnett (17) participate in workout drills during the 2016 NFL Scouting Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports
At the 2016 NFL Combine, Conklin ran a 5.00 in the 40-yard dash, recorded 25 reps on the bench press, had a 103.0 inch broad jump, finished the 3 cone drill in 7.63 seconds and finished the 20-yard shuttle in 4.57 seconds. The OT currently stands at 6’6″, weighs in at 308 lbs, has a 35″ arm length, and 10 3/8″ hands.
Has the ability to recover when beaten. Controlled Oregon’s defensive end DeForest Buckner by bouncing him around at the point of attack. Has impressive power in his hands. Makes it difficult for defenders to disengage once he latches onto them. Doesn’t allow linebackers to slide underneath him. He’s excellent in run protection and also does well when protecting his quarterback.
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Conklin may encounter issues when facing NFL edge speed. Able to stuff single rush moves, but average athleticism will be tested in the pros.
He’s a bit slow when it comes to his footwork and will need to spend some work with his techniques after the snap. He’s fast once he starts to work on his assignment but sometimes can let his mind get the best of him which takes him out of plays.
DRAFT DAY PREDICTION
Conklin’s talent and passion for not only his position, but the game of football itself should help him find a new home in the first round of the draft. There are a plethora of NFL teams heading into this year’s draft in need of depth on their offensive line.
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Conklin should find himself selected during the later picks of the first round. Conklin plays with aggression and physicality, something teams would love to have and build around heading into next season.