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2022 Interior Offensive Lineman Rankings

The 2022 NFL Draft is almost here, with a lot of talk on the: Quarterbacks, Wide Receivers, Offensive Tackles, Edge Rushers, and Corner Backs, it’s time to talk about another strong position group in the Interior Offensive Line. This class is headlined by Ikem “Ickey” Ekwonu and Tyler Linderbaum but there are a lot of 1st-round prospects that will fall to the 2nd-round. Here are my official rankings for the 2022 IOL Class.

1.) Ikem “Ickey” Ekwonu, NC State

6’4

310 lbs

Junior

Strengths:

  • Dominant run blocker
  • Accelerates quickly off the snap
  • When in open field, LOOK OUT

Weakness:

  • Not the best pass blocker
  • Height could be an issue if he needs to move to offensive tackle

Ekwonu is listed as an offensive tackle but I think teams see him as a guard. Ekwonu is a tree bark when it comes to blocking, he’s a huge bulldozer that is hard to move. Is he versatile enough to play every position? I think he’s going to be a top 10 guard his rookie year but could lack in the tackle area.

Team Fits: Texans, Giants, Panthers

Draft Projection: Top 5 Pick

Player Comparison: Kelechi Osemele

Image from Icon Sportswire

2.) Tyler Linderbaum, Iowa

6’2

296 lbs

Redshirt Junior

Strengths

  • Explosive off the snap
  • Speed in the screen game
  • Plays better when quarterback is under center

Weakness:

  • Bull rush could surprise him and cause him to panic
  • Shotgun formation is a concern

Linderbaum has been labeled as a “generational talent” since the College Football season began in 2021. With the strengths of every other position group in this class, Linderbaum might slip to the 2nd-round

Team Fits: Eagles, Raiders, Bengals

Draft Projection: Late 1st-round pick

Pro Comparison: Jason Kelce

Image from Brian Fluharty/USA TODAY Sports

3.) Zion Johnson, Boston College

6’3

312 lbs

Senior

Strengths

  • Great double team blocker
  • Elite blocking when it comes to open field against linebackers by taking right angles
  • Stops defensive bull rushers

Weaknesses

  • Blitzes could cause a problem with him, especially designed blitzes
  • Predominant run blocker, below average in pass blocking

Watching Zion Johnson made me believe he was a day 1 starter. He fights every play and will be a nice addition to any locker room because of his enthusiasm in the way he leads his team. Pro Bowl-caliber player.

Team Fits: Eagles, Patriots, Buccaneers

Draft Projection: Late 1st-round pick

Pro Comparison- Dalton Risner

Image from Sports Illustrated

4.) Kenyon Green, Texas A&M

6’4

323 lbs

Junior

Strengths

  • Hand placement is elite
  • Bulldozer of a offensive lineman
  • Quick hands

Weaknesses

  • Penalties
  • Not the best pass blocker

Kenyon Green was predicted to be a top 10 pick after last season. He fell due to pass blocking concerns and the amount of penalties he has each game. I expect a team that dominates in the run to end up selecting Kenyon Green.

Team Fits: Buccaneers, Packers, Titans

Draft Projection: Late 1st-round pick

Pro Comparison: Richie Incognito

Image from UTC Athletics

5.) Cole Strange, Tennessee-Chattanooga

6’5

307 lbs

Redshirt Senior

Strengths

  • Strong hands
  • Potential center?
  • Great for a run blocking scheme

Weaknesses

  • Poor lower body strength
  • Not the best pull blocker

Cole Strange is a unique prospect. While the offensive line class is a deep one, look out for Strange being selected in the 2nd-round. After that, there’s a huge gap in offensive line prospects.

Team Fits: Buccaneers, Cardinals, Rams

Draft Projection: Mid 2nd-round pick

Pro Comparison: JC Tretter

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