Prospect: Dallas Thomas, OT, TennesseeDallas Thomas

Height: 6’5”

Weight: 306

Athleticism:

  • Limited speed and range in the open field
  • Struggles to plant and change directions smoothly, much more effective with his hands on a defender
  • Fluid hips and can bend knees as a pass blocker to sink his hips
  • Solid frame with a thick and strong lower half

Intelligence/Effort:

  • Reaction speed often a half-second slow, shows up against intricate blitzes and moving parts
  • Not an extra-effort run blocker, has a clock in his head until he expects the runner to be in the clear
  • Handles stunts inconsistently due to poor vision, showed improvements from junior to senior season though
  • Versatile player, experience at left guard and left tackle, with ability to move around in the middle of games

Pass Blocking:

  • Very strong anchor to counteract the bullrush, absorbs contract with lower body strength
  • Will occasionally get rocked back on his heels if he fails to anticipate the power rush, leaves him vulnerable to combination moves
  • Meets pass rushers early instead of waiting to some effectiveness, does so without lunging or overextending
  • Moves with heavy feet, struggles to mirror quick pass rush moves occasionally
  • Needs to increase foot frequency, especially while engaged

Run Blocking:

  • Wide base run blocker who can lock up defenders without help from other blockers
  • Effective combo blocker, has a good feel for the timing it requires
  • Has enough athleticism to reach the second level quickly, results vary when he gets there
  • Struggles to sustain blocks with consistency, mainly due to inconsistencies in technique and pad level
  • Poor technique as a puller, pops up out of his stance and gets his pads too high from the start and fails to lower them through contact

Technique:

  • Hand placement and arm extension very inconsistent, not the same player snap in and snap out
  • Strong hands, locks up pass rushers quite easily if he places them properly
  • Sinks his hips well as a pass blocker, doesn’t sustain that knee bend and low pad level as a run blocker

Overall:

Even after 37 collegiate starts at two positions on the Tennessee offensive line, Dallas Thomas is still a work in progress as a pro prospect.  If he can clean up his technique issues, we could be looking at a very solid right tackle or guard in the league.  Which begs the question, where does he fit?  He’s not a drive blocker in the running game, which is what teams love out of their right tackles.  Yet the tape shows him to be a more effective edge blocker than on the interior.  He may be a zone blocking tackle or guard, but that would take quite an adjustment period.  His versatility is a plus of course, but it also brings up more questions.  The best thing for Thomas is to land on a team with the patience to get him in the system and develop him.  He has some tools that only a few other offensive line prospects have, which is why he should still fetch a second round pick.

Originally published at DetroitLionsDraft.com: Dallas Thomas Scouting Report

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