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2022 NFL Draft Offensive Line Preview

The 87th annual NFL Draft is fast approaching, so now is the perfect time to look ahead and get to know some of the top prospects in the class. I’ll break down each position and take a look at teams who may be in the market for that type of player. At the end, I’ll give you a look at my final mock draft. This time, we’re heading to the trenches to check out the top offensive line prospects.

This year’s group of linemen is headlined by three big names at the top: Evan Neal, Charles Cross, and Ikem Ekwonu. All three of these prospects are more than likely top 10 picks. And there could be as many as five or six taken in the 1st round alone. Top level offensive lineman hardly ever reach free agency and, when they do, they come with a hefty price tag. So it makes sense, financially, that teams look to fill their needs through the draft. So, let’s get to it. Here are my top ten offensive lineman in the 2022 NFL Draft.


1. Evan Neal T, Alabama 6’8 337 lbs.

Neal is an absolutely mammoth prospect who should be a top-flight tackle early in his career. A three-year starter for Nick Saban at Alabama, Neal saw action at three different positions. Neal didn’t struggle with any of them. He battles a bit with balance when getting into blocks. However, ut that can be coached and whoever drafts him has their starting left tackle for years to come.

2. Charles Cross T, Mississippi State 6’5 307 lbs.

As the NFL becomes increasingly more of a passing league, guys like Charles Cross become more desirable. Playing in an air-raid offense at Mississippi State, Cross has a high number of reps as a pass blocker. He has progressed significantly each season, logging 66 pass blocking plays against Alabama with zero pressures allowed. The downside of that type of offense is he hardly ever had to run block. Thus he will need a lot of coaching in that department.

3. Ikem Ekwonu G/T, North Carolina State 6’4 310 lbs.

Ekwonu has seen himself rising up draft boards throughout this process. Ekwonu is an absolute bully in the run game and whose film is filled with big time blocks. He’s been dubbed “Mr. Pancake” by his teammates. While he currently projects as a tackle, he would be an absolute monster if kicked inside to guard. As such, he needs a bit of work in pass protection.

4. Tyler Linderbaum C, Iowa 6’2 296 lbs.

In my opinion, Tyler Linderbaum is the surest thing at his position in the entire draft. Linderbaum was arguably the most athletic offensive lineman in college football a year ago. He has a wrestling background, including a viral video against Buccaneers Tristan Wirfs from high school. An all-around solid player, Linderbaum could improve his handwork in pass protection but should be a starter immediately and for years to come.

5. Trevor Penning T, Northern Iowa 6’7 325 lbs.

Penning has a mean streak that cannot be coached. According to Pro Football Focus, Penning was the highest rated pass blocker in all of Division I, though much of that came against FCS competition. If he can continue to improve his pass blocking technique, the sky’s the limit for Penning.

6. Bernhard Raimann T, Central Michigan 6’6 303 lbs.

Raimann is one of the most interesting prospects in this year’s draft. A foreign exchange student from Austria, Raimann earned a scholarship to Central Michigan, after only one year playing the game. Originally recruited as a tight end, Raimann kicked inside to tackle. He’s one of the most naturally athletic players at his position. Only playing the position for two years, he is still somewhat of a project. Yet he checks all the boxes when it comes to athleticism.


7. Kenyon Green G/T, Texas A&M 6’4 323 lbs.

Green might be one of the few prospects whose versatility has actually hurt their draft stock. Coming into the year, there was talk of Green being one of the better tackles in the class. Injuries happened and he was forced into action across the line for the Aggies. Thus, he now projects more as a guard.


8. Abraham Lucas T, Washington State 6’6 315 lbs.

Like Cross, Abraham Lucas played in an air-raid offense at Washington State. He saw 2,195 pass blocking plays. Lucas has the ideal measurements for the position. He has not had much experience run blocking and tends to play too upright. Lucas’ technique will need a lot of work so a team with a strong offensive line coach would be ideal.

9. Darian Kinnard T, Kentucky 6’5 322 lbs.

Kinnard has been the most dominant run blocker in college football the last three seasons. He earned a PFF grade over higher than 90 each year. Kinnard has that mean streak that coaches love but his technique needs a lot of work before he can be relied on. While he started all three years at right tackle for the Wildcats, he’ll likely kick inside to guard at the next level.

10. Tyler Smith G/T, Tulsa 6’5 324 lbs.

Smith is a big, nasty run blocker who led all the FBS in big time blocks last season. He has a nasty demeanor which can be both an asset and a liability. There is a lot of technique work to be done in all aspects as Smith is still very raw.

Teams Targeting Offensive Line

Houston Texans- The Texans have two picks in the top 13 and have holes just about everywhere. They are in prime position to have their pick of the top tackles at pick 3 to replace Laremy Tunsil if he moves on after next season.


Los Angeles Chargers- The Chargers need both a right tackle and a right guard so they should look to address this early. If they decide to do so in the first round, Penning or Raimann could be available at pick 17.


New York Giants- The Giants took Andrew Thomas a year to solidify the left tackle position. Picking at 5 and 7, New York could take one of the three of Neal, Cross, and Ekwonu.


New Orleans Saints- The Saints are on the board at picks 16 and 19 and have a huge hole on the left side of their line following the departure of Terron Armstead. They seem to be rolling with Jameis Winston for the time, so it would be smart to protect his blindside with one of those picks.


Seattle Seahawks- The Russell Wilson era is over in Seattle, and it appears a rebuild is underway. There is an obvious need at the quarterback position, but the Seahawks should look to lock down a position they struggled with for years.


What are your thoughts? Any prospects you think I missed? Follow me on Twitter @devinlowe123 and let’s engage!





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