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LSU Football 2015 NFL Draft Profiles: La'el Collins

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We start our run-through of LSU's NFL Draft prospects with the Tigers' dominant senior tackle.

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

La'el Collins

Position: Tackle
Combine Height/Weight: 6-4, 305 pounds
LSU Listed Height/Weight: 6-5, 321
Hand Size: 10.3 inches
Arm Length: 33.25 inches
40-Yard Dash Time: 5.12
Bench-Press Reps (of 225 pounds): 21
Vertical Jump: 27 inches
Broad Jump: 108 inches
Short Shuttle: 4.63
3-Cone Drill: 7.7 seconds

Strengths

A powerful, drive-blocking offensive tackle who will absolutely maul an opponent in the run game...big chest, with long-arms for his frame and big, strong hands...excels at controlling defenders when he gets his hands on them...rarely loses a fight, and comes back harder the next play if he does...great finisher who takes pride in putting opponents on the turf -- a real attitude blocker ...emotional leader and a tone-setter for his unit as a senior.

Earned first-team All-SEC honors and the Jacobs Blocking Award in 2014.

Weaknesses

Doesn't have the ideal hip flexibility or feet for a tackle...can struggle with speed rushers that try to go wide...doesn't always keep hands in the proper position, which can slow him down on getting them on a defender...may be better off on the right side, or at guard...may struggle against the best pass-rushers at the next level.

Verdict

I'm a big La'el Collins fan, as both a player and a prospect, but I have to admit I'm not 100-percent sure he's a left tackle at the next level. That said, I think that he has the potential to be one of the best guards in the game -- a dominant, all-world type, similar to former Tiger Alan Faneca with the Steelers (who did swing out and play left tackle on occasion when Pittsburgh was short-handed). He doesn't have the ideal height for tackle, but he does have long arms and he's definitely a mauler. Most importantly, he's just steady. He may have given up some plays to players like Dante Fowler Jr., or Texas A&M's future first-rounder Myles Garrett, but he gave as good as he got to both guys as well. Regardless, he's one of the top offensive line prospects in this draft and he'll be off the board in the top half of the first round. I wouldn't mind seeing the Saints take him at No. 13 at all.