2019 East-West Shrine Game Preview: Offensive Line

Photo: Bryan Lynn-USA TODAY Sports

Get excited football fans, TDN is primed to provide you with unparalleled coverage of the East-West Shrine Game. We have five members of our staff (JC Cornell, Trevor Sikkema, Kyle Crabbs, Joe Marino and Jon Ledyard) credentialed for the week to deliver you the most comprehensive analysis possible on the practices and games. To get ready for the event, we’re going to spend the next two weeks previewing the rosters on a position-by-position basis. This Shrine Game positional preview is on the offensive line.

It’s time to give this important event the media coverage it deserves. Practices begin on January 14th and the game itself is on January 19th. All of the published previews are listed below.

Shrine Game Previews

East Roster

Arguably the biggest name amongst offensive linemen at the Shrine Game, Miami offensive tackle Tyree St. Louis showed strong traits a year ago on the right side for the Hurricanes, but struggled on the left this season. He's big and explosive in his kick slide, but his technique, footwork and strike timing are all inconsistent. Maybe he'll thrive with a move back to the right?

The other tackles are Olisaemeka Udoh from Elon, Justin Skule from Vanderbilt and Ethan Greenidge from Villanova. Udoh and Greenidge are 6-foot-4-to-6-foot-5 and each over 335. I haven't seen them, but I'll be curious to see if they stay at tackle for long with those builds. Skule has more of a tackle frame, but he was up-and-down when I saw Vanderbilt this season.

At center, Kentucky's Bunchy Stallings and Georgia's Lamont Gaillard are the names to watch. Gaillard had issues with power the past two years and will have to prove he's athletic enough to play at a higher level. When pass rushers got on his edge, he struggled to mirror laterally.

Stallings had similar issues, but he's nasty in the run game when he can grip you up. Can also play guard or center. Florida State's Alec Eberle and Mississippi's Sean Rawlings both had rough senior years, and I was a little surprised to see them on the Shrine roster. Both are lighter centers who struggle with power, but the more versatility they can show, the better. That's supposed to be Rawlings' calling card. I haven't seen any of Illinois' Nick Allegretti yet.

I haven't seen much of the guards, but Florida's Fredrick Johnson sure looks the part. 6-foot-6, 330 pounds and yoked. N.C. State's Tyler Jones is a smaller guard who will intrigue outside zone teams, while Morgan State's Joshua Miles could get a few looks at tackle.

West Roster

The center group is led by Miami transfer Nick Linder out of Indiana, whose brother Brandon is the Jaguars starting center. There might be enough traits there to secure a day three selection, but this class isn't pretty at center. Stanford's Jesse Burkett has been underwhelming despite getting some hype last year, as power rushers can really give him issues. I haven't seen any of Western Michigan's John Keenoy just yet.

At guard, Keaton Sutherland has had some really nice moments on tape for Texas A&M, but inconsistency plagues his game. He'll need to check that pad level all week long. Juwann Bushell-Beatty looks like a tackle on the hoof and played there for Michigan during his entire career, but he's listed as a guard for St. Pete. I haven't seen Louisiana Tech's O'Shea Dugas or Arkansas State's Lanard Bonner yet.

Paul Adams is probably the tackle generating the most buzz right now, but San Diego State's Ryan Pope has intrigued me in brief glimpses. He's ultra-physical with outstanding size, I just wonder how well he moves against speed rushers. He's one of three 6-foot-7 offensive tackles in St. Pete, the other two being Utah's Jackson Barton and Sioux Falls' Trey Pipkins. I'm excited for my first exposure to both.

I'm not sure Pitt's Alex Bookser will stay at tackle long, as he seems better suited inside to me. Arkansas' Brian Wallace is all but certain to be a guard in the NFL, but he'll have a chance to show versatility this week. He'll get after you, but I don't know that his measurables will be great.