Jan 4, 2013; Arlington, TX, USA; Texas A

NFL Draft: 3 Left Tackles / 7 Needy Teams

By James Fedewa

The NFL Draft is next week and the Kansas City Chiefs are on the clock. There are three top tier left tackles in 2013 NFL draft and all should be able to start day one: Luke Joeckel (Texas A&M), Eric Fisher (Central Michigan) and Lane Johnson (Oklahoma). Fans and analysts anticipate the Chiefs selecting left tackle Luke Joeckel (Texas A&M), even though they currently have a very good left tackle Branden Albert. There are seven teams that could draft a left tackle in the first round (Chiefs, Jaguars, Eagles, Lions, Cardinals, Chargers and Dolphins). Seven teams, three elite left tackle prospects…

Base on 1st round projections and objective estimations, here are some (subjective) percentages of positional team-needs for those 7 left tackle needy teams (within the first dozen draft picks):

  1. Chiefs (#1 pick): Joeckel is the consensus prediction. (60% chance of drafting a LT / 25% Defensive Line / 15% Outside Linebacker)
  2. Jaguars (#2 pick): Currently have a quality left tackle in Eugene Monroe. He’ll be a free agent next season (and a franchise tag could be set for him in 2014, if necessary). Not projected to draft a left tackle, but could happen. (20% chance of drafting a LT / 50% pass rusher / 30% quarterback)
  3. Eagles (#4 pick): Currently have a very good left tackle (Jason Peters), but he’s returning from a major Achilles injury. At 31 years old, Peters is expected back healthy, but Philadelphia could draft a left tackle to get younger (or BPA). The Eagles are changing defensive schemes to a 3-4 base and need to draft a defensive players early to fit their new system (20% chance of drafting a LT / 20% quarterback / 20% defensive line / 20% pass rusher / 20% cornerback)
  4. Lions (#5 pick): Lost both of their tackles from retirement and free agency. Detroit did draft a first round tackle in the 2012 draft (Riley Rieff), but is he a right or left tackle? The Lions could draft another left tackle early, but have several holes to fill. They could draft a right tackle later in the draft for less. (30% chance of drafting a LT / need a 30% pass rusher / 40% cornerback)
  5. Cardinals (#7 pick): Currently have a left tackle in Levi Brown, who was lost early in 2012 with a season ending injury. Brown is an average left tackle but an average left tackle is still a good left tackle. They could upgrade at left tackle and shift Brown to right tackle, but current 2nd year starter Bobby Massie played very well and improved down the stretch. (30% chance of drafting a LT / 30% pass rusher / 20% guard / 20% Quarterback)
  6. Chargers (#11 pick): San Diego cut left tackle Jared Gaither after one terrible season, signed backup left tackle King Dunlap and there is an obvious hole and need (50% chance of drafting a left tackle / 20% Guard / 15% defensive tackle / 15% pass rusher)
  7. Dolphins (#12): Lost left tackle Jake Long to free agency, but drafted projected replacement Jonathan Martin in 2012. Could trade up to get a left tackle in the draft, but have several other needs. In all likely hood, the top three left tackles should be unavailable at #12(15% chance of drafting a left tackle from trading up / 40% cornerback / 30% pass rusher / 15% right tackle)

So who’s going where?

For the above 7 teams (baring any other trade, salary cap cuts or trades), based on the estimated team-need (TN) percentages and best player available (BPA), projections may look like:

  • Chiefs (BPA): Luke Joeckel, LT Texas A&M
  • Jaguars (BPA): Sharrif Floyd, DT, Florida
  • Eagles (TN): Geno Smith, QB, West Virginia
  • Lions (TN): Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama
  • Cardinals (TN): Ezekiel Ansah, DE, BYU
  • Chargers (BPA): Eric Fisher, LT, Central Michigan
  • Dolphins (BPA): Lane Johnson, LT, Oklahoma

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Tags: 2013 Nfl Draft Rookie Left Tackle San Diego Chargers

  • kris

    No Way we get Fisher, not gonna happen.

    • jamfed

      …you can’t say “NO WAY!” Anything can happen in the NFL Draft.

      PLUS, no one knows for sure if Joeckel will even go to the Chiefs #1 overall. The ONLY way to 100% insure that Jockel goes to the Chiefs is if they trade Brandon Albert before they pick. Then they NEED Joeckle if Albert is traded….

      Kansas CIty wants an early second round draft pick for Brandon Albert, but most teams that pick EARLY in the second round do not have a lot of salary cap room (except the Cardinals). And from what I understand, if AZ doesn’t draft a QB or LT in the first round, then they’ll probably draft a QB in the 2nd round (like M.Glennon), so that may take AZ out of the Brandon Albert sweepstakes. .

      I’ve already started my NEXT article about how the Chiefs drafting Joeckel or trading Brandon Albert to either the Jaguars, Eagles, Lions, Cardinals or Dolphins will only HELP the Chargers land Eric Fisher (or worst case Lane Johnson).

      all I can say is, expect SD to get a left tackle in the draft…

  • Rob Base

    Eric Fisher would be awesome highly doubt it.

  • http://www.facebook.com/lostkiara Stefanie Smith

    Man, I would jump out of my shoes, if Eric Fisher fell to the Chargers.

  • Dave

    Last year Ingram wasn’t supposed to fall to us, never say never. Lets hope the same thing happens this year with either Fisher or Johnson.

    • Cgoodness13

      He was suppose o goto the jets if I remember correctly, but they choose someone ranked lower than him for some reason, maybe arm length? What Evs, they missed out.

      • jamfed

        Jets drafted Quinton Coples at #19 (who I wanted the Chargers to get, if SD couldn’t draft Mark Barron). I mocked Coples going to Seattle #12, and Carolina drafting Ingram at #9 .

  • TheReturnOfMrBlanks

    Fishers the best of the group, I doubt we get him. He was mocked to us months ago but that was before anyone knew who he was. Now he’s Mr. potential #1 pick and saying all the right things to make that happen. Would still love it if that happened but how could AZ or the Eagles not take him?

    • jamfed

      because AZ has zero pass rushers and Levi Jones. And because Phlly has Jason Peters and a whole new defensive scheme, with more holes than left tackle.

      • boltingindiego

        are you gonna trust jason peters in that offense after 2 torn achilles tendons last year. My guess for them is jordan, star or fisher.

        • jamfed

          Jason Peters could be the best left tackle in the NFL. And could’ve played in the playoffs (if they’d made it to the playoffs). Sure, the Eagles could use a backup left tackle, but they could find one later. They lost two starting CB’s, don’t have a OLB on their roster and need a NT. Plus M.Vick is only under contract for one more year. I wonder what’s gonna happen with Nick Foels?

  • 619chargers4life

    when u put it like this , it makes one think we got a real good chance at landing one of the top 3. throw in a couple of trades of teams trying to get in the top ten then its easy to think we will land one of the top three. Man O man this draft needs to hurry up and get here .

  • davacho

    wow- where are you getting your numbers? how did you happen upon those percentages?

    • jamfed

      My percentage numbers are only subjective estimates, based on team-need alone. Most NFL teams draft Best Player Available with a mixture of team need, so everything at this point is estimations. Most NFL Draft Analysts talk about the top 20 draft prospects, some good ones can estimate the 2nd and later rounds or top 100 guys…
      I just can’t see Arizona drafting a left tackle when they have a L.Brown and a decent O-LIne with only 1 guard (out of 5 o-line starters) that should be repalced. They’re pass rushers need more of an upgrade then an o-tackle.
      Philly has a bunch of open holes, and I think they’ll go for a QB or Defense.
      Lions lost both defensive ends and the worst secondary in the league. CB and DE are bigger needs, and they can get a right tackle later in the draft, and use a Riley Rieff as a LT.

      • davacho

        gotcha- thanks for clarification- thought you were using some formula. i, like everyone else, would be thrilled to see one of the 3 T on board… i wouldn’t mind us dropping back a few spots and grabbing one of the G and a top CB. : )

        • jamfed

          I do have a formula, based on team-need, BPA , depth, first round draft picks previously used at the same position, etc. However, it’s only a skewed interpretation of a bias fan, lol.
          Everything you read is some what BIAS, and I’m not sure why most NFL analysts are thinking O-Line is such a huge drafting priority this year.

          Just remember last year, when David DeCastro was the “BEST” guard prospect EVER. Now this year Warmack and Cooper are rated higher than DeCastro (and he was drafted #24 over all). DeCastro was supposed to go a lot early than than (around #10 to #15). Guards just don’t go top ten…

  • nativesandiegan

    It’s a miracle! I’m actually able to join the discussion in the middle of it despite my 3 hour time difference! The fun of draft projections by all these experts is they’re never completely correct. I’m a bit perplexed by what I’m seeing on tape & what I’m hearing from media (and most of you). I’ve been looking at tape on YouTube (Lane Johnson plus the 3 guards so far). When I watch Chance Warmack, I see glaring problems. Occasionally he does make a solid run block, but all too often he just pushes his opponent & then just stands there (in the game vs LSU) & didn’t finish many of his blocks. In pass blocking he mostly just stands there (& nobody bull-rushes him).
    Cooper explodes out of his stance in short yardage and all running plays & finishes his block or moves on to the 2nd level and even to the safety. Pass blocking he mirrors really well and even pulls to nail a guy on the right side. I also didn’t’ see anyone successfully bull-rush him. He never lunged at anyone but Warmack did & even ended up on the ground a few times.
    Warford wasn’t as athletic as Cooper but didn’t end up on the ground much (only once) & did very well pass blocking.
    Lane Johnson was similar to Cooper but not quite as good (yet).
    That’s probably way too much for now so Aloha from the Big Island. My suggestion – look for yourself.

    • jamfed

      Aloha! I’d really like to see Chance Warmack as a Charger. He’s a beast, and I didn’t see too many errors on any of his game tape. He can take 300 lbs D-linemen and fundimentally move them easliy, with one arm. it’s all about leverage, and he gets it. He’s like a 320 lbs. ninja with pressure points. But if SD does draft Warmack, then you probably going to see King Dunlap as the starting left tackle.

      Lane Johnson will probably be SD’s selection, but he only has ONE year of left tackle experience. He’s very good, yet still raw. There is some RISK with drafting him vs. Warmack. SD needs a Left Tackle more than needing Warmack

      I like Cooper better than Lane Johnson too… but I wouldn’t want to draft him #11 overall. Coop pulls better than anyone in the draft, he’s VERY strong, very mobile, with great vision. He called him self a Monster Truck Ballet, LOL. So I like him even more.

  • Cgoodness13

    Lions will go CB, eagles guard or pass rush, cardinals guard pash rush.

    • nativesandiegan

      Hope so. Seems to me Eagles and Cards are the keys. If Lions take LT, possible Milliner could fall to us (not bad consolation prize-a shutdown corner who aggressively consisrently stops run & great blitzer). Then take Warford in 2nd & Quissenbery (I’m sure I misspelled that) in 3rd. This draft is all over the place; the wildest I’ve ever seen in my 49 years of following it.

      • jamfed

        A lot of people seem to like Warford, but he’s built like a nose tackle and not really scheme friendly. I really doubt SD drafts Warford, but he could be there in the 3rd round. Quessenberry will be available in the 3rd or 4th round.

  • Cgoodness13

    Fisher will definitely make the bigger impact faster than Johnson, but Johnson has more upside than him…..

  • Jonah Lee

    Awesome breakdown!! I keep saying we’re going to get one of the top LT’s I just needed someone to put it in writing!!!

    • nativesandiegan

      I just need it to happen. Hurry up draft (now that I’ve finished my taxes)!!!

  • Sergio Quintero

    The most hopeful is Detroit, Eric Fisher is a better player than Milliner, and with over then 40 million invested in Stafford for the next 2 seasons, I would be more than surprised that Detroit would pass on Fisher. I know they have Reiff, but the word out of Lions camp, seems to be they want him to play RT.

    • jamfed

      Actually, I believe Milliner is the better prospect than Fisher. Fisher will be a solid pro and I hope he lands in SD (based on team need), but Milliner could be the next Darelle Revis. If Milliner were to slip to #11 and Lane Johnson is still available I’d take Milliner.
      Detroit last their best pass rusher (Cliff Avril), so their secondary will suffer even MORE. If I’m Detroit’s GM, I go Milliner in the 1st, RT Watson/Long in the 2nd, DE Lemonier, in the 3rd.

      • Sergio Quintero

        I think Milliner is overrated, not great ball skills, more of a zone corner, who can’t press bump and run a la Revis, that my opinion. He’s close to player 10 to elite in my view.

      • Sergio Quintero

        Milliner is a really good player, but he’s not that rare athlete like a Patrick Peterson, he’s closer to in his prime Jammer, than a elite corner.

      • Sergio Quintero

        Mike Mayock out of all the draftnicks is probably the most respected, has Eric Fisher as the number 1 player on the board and Dee Milliner as player 16:


    • http://boltbeat.com/ Ernie Padaon

      plus the dude played college in Michigan. makes even more sense for that