NFP Prospect Focus: Andrus Peat and Donovan Smith
Andrus Peat – Tackle – Stanford
Andrus Peat is a third year junior who is entering the draft early. He played as a backup in 2012 and has been a starter the last two seasons. Coming out of high school, Peat was rated as a 5-star prospect and had his choice to attend any of the top programs in the country. Being that he was an academically-oriented kid, he chose Stanford.
Peat has outstanding size. I would estimate his size at being in the 6064 – 315 area with very long arms. He is an excellent athlete with quick feet, natural bend and easy change of direction. He has excellent speed for the position and I would expect that he may run in the 5.00 area at the Combine.
With Stanford playing a pro-style offense, Peat has already been coached in pro-type technique. He is a very good run blocker who has top snap reaction and is explosive on contact. He has snap through his hips, stays low, keeps his back straight, and drives his feet. He is consistently able to get movement and easily gets to the second level. He can pull and play in space, showing the ability to breakdown and adjust to movement.
In pass protection, he sets quickly and has the lateral agility to slide and cut off wide speed. He is a natural knee bender and can easily recover and come back the other way versus counter moves. He has a strong punch, good overall hand use and anchors very well.
Don’t be surprised if come draft day, Peat is the first offensive lineman drafted. Not too many have his combination of size, strength, athleticism and production. He looks like a future Pro Bowl type tackle and will play right away.
Donovan Smith- Tackle – Penn State
When Smith entered the draft, it caught a lot of scouts by surprise. He was a player that wasn’t really on many scouts' radar in the fall as a possible early entry. The initial reaction was, "Why? He isn’t ready”. The reality is that the scouts were caught off guard because they didn’t grade him during the season. Smith is a fourth year junior and a three year starter at Penn State. Because he graduated in December, he was allowed to participate in the Senior Bowl and had a strong week.
Smith has very good size. At the Senior Bowl he measured 6056 – 341. He is a thick wide body with long arms. Watching him closely for three days, I would say he is probably 10 pounds too heavy right now. Smith is a good athlete with quickness, balance and good feet. He doesn’t look fast, but tackles don’t have to be. As long as he is quick in a short area and can run well for 10 or 20 yards, he’s fine. When he runs at the Combine, he will probably be in the 5.35 range.
Smith is a physical run blocker. He has some snap on contact, drives his legs and is able to generate movement. He is efficient to the second level and shows he can play in space. In pass protection, he can set with good quickness and is adequate at cutting off wide speed. He can slide his feet and recover and does a good job versus counter moves. With his girth and bend, it is very difficult to try and bull rush him.
He is well coached and does a good a job with his hands. He shows a strong punch and generally keeps his hands inside.
Overall, while Smith played left tackle at Penn State, I see him being a right tackle or a guard in the NFL. The NFL player he reminds me of from a size, frame and athletic viewpoint is Rodger Saffold of the Rams. In college, Saffold’s play was very similar to Smith’s, and Saffold had success right away in the NFL. As for draft position, I feel Smith is a solid second round type and he will play very early in his career.
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