New Orleans, LA
Archbishop Rummel High School
PJ Lonergan is an interesting prospect. A 3-star on both Rivals and Scout, he was one of the very first commitments in this class, committing at Junior Day of 2007. Not much was known about him at the time, but he had a generally good reputation.
During his senior season, Lonergan created no drama. No one ever once heard anything about Lonergan wavering on his commitment or causing trouble. He never really talked about himself. He just went out and played, earning all-district, all-metro, and all-state honors in the process while playing tackle for Rummel.
He is expected to slide inside and play on the interior line at LSU, beginning his career at center. One wonders if his move to center rather than guard is strictly for depth purposes so that we can have a scout team, because redshirt freshman T-Bob Hebert appears to be the heir apparent to Brett Helms' center spot when it opens up after this year.
Judging by his All-Whatever honors, Lonergan was a rather successful player in high schook, but success at high school certainly doesn't equate to success in college, and offensive line is a place. While offensive line is certainly a difficult spot to judge talent and predict success, it is even more difficult when there is not much film on a player.
And Lonergan has little film out there, and all of what he has is from his junior year. What's more, there are very few clips of him pass blocking. Either his team rarely passed, or his video editor didn't show the passes. So, all we know about Lonergan is that he really pushed around a bunch of guys in his junior year of high school. All this points to a character who is not an attention-seeker, which I suppose is good in a lineman (bad in a skill-position player).
There is much to like about Lonergan, but you have to acknowledge that he is a project, which is disproportionately true of most offensive linemen. He may be a road grater at offensive guard or center, but he must be very raw in pass blocking, and you can't be in the 2-deep at LSU until you prove you can pass block. Expect Mr. Lonergan to redshirt and spend his first year or two working on his finesse-blocking before making a move to get real playing time.