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Thread: NFL combine: Jake Matthews or Greg Robinson? Pick your flavor

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    NFL combine: Jake Matthews or Greg Robinson? Pick your flavor

    NFL combine: Jake Matthews or Greg Robinson? Pick your flavor
    By Dane Brugler | NFLDraftScout.com Senior Analyst
    February 22, 2014 9:33 am ET

    Which offensive tackle prospect would you rather have: the technically-sound four year starter or an athletic mauler with tremendous upside?

    That is the question NFL teams who are considering an offensive tackle in the top-10 will need to ask themselves when deciding between Texas A&M's Jake Matthews and Auburn's Greg Robinson. Both have SEC resumes and both project as above average NFL prospects, but for different reasons.

    It might not be a “who is better?” argument, but rather a “pick your flavor” situation.

    Maybe the “safest” prospect in this draft class, Matthews is as steady as they come. From the bloodlines to the pedigree, the former Aggie tackle was destined to play offensive line at the highest level.

    “I'd like to think I wasn't grandfathered in, that I earned my way,” Matthews said at the Combine in response to his family's rich NFL lineage.

    Matthews began his Texas A&M career as a reserve, but it didn't take long for him to earn a starting job as a true freshman, starting 33 straight games at right tackle before replacing Luke Joeckel at left tackle in 2013. Over his time in College Station, he played in very different offenses, with very different styles of quarterbacks and against some of college football's top pass rushers in the SEC.

    Matthews has seen it all.

    “We had a coaching change and switched offenses, going from a pro style to a spread style,” said Matthews. “I learned a lot from both coaching staffs. Having all those different circumstances thrown at me and still playing well is something I'm proud of.”

    Matthews isn't the longest, strongest or meanest, but he's a coordinated athlete with smooth body control and natural balance. A true technician, the game appears to come easy to him with his football smarts and scouts believe he can excel at any of the five offensive line spots in the NFL. But what can Matthews accomplish in Indianapolis this week to prove to scouts he's the top offensive lineman at the NFL Combine?

    “I want to reiterate what I've put on film all year,” Matthews responded. “I want to put up good numbers and show I'm the best tackle.”

    Robinson became the starting left tackle at Auburn in 2012 and became an unheralded fixture for Auburn's productive run attack that led the Nation in total offense. Although he's still learning and noticeably unrefined in some areas, Robinson has an intriguing blend of natural power, body control and athleticism. Factor in the violent mentality and he consistently flashes dominating qualities in the run game with very high upside in pass protection.

    The upside is clear, but how much time will he need to reach it.

    “I'm not at full potential right now,” Robinson said on Thursday at the Combine. “I still have a lot to go. I started last year, my first season starting. The guys they have ahead of me like Jake Matthews, he started since he was a freshman. That's just something I feel I need to prove.”

    Robinson has strong hands to steer defenders in the run game to take them where he wants with his finishing attitude. But his pass protection is somewhat untested because of Gus Malzahn's offense at Auburn. He has the athleticism and wide base to seal the edge, but his aggressive demeanor will also cause him to lunge, overextend at the waist and be undisciplined at times protecting the pocket.

    “I understand about run blocking because I worked on a lot,” Robinson said. “I've also worked the pass. It was limited. I feel I'm decent enough and I will prove myself if there's anybody doubting that I can't pass block.”

    Robinson isn't a project, but he does need some seasoning and time to button up his flaws.

    Matthews and Robinson do have their similarities: neither started playing on the offensive line until midway through high school careers. Matthews was a quarterback when he was younger, but once he switched over as a high school sophomore, he realized offensive line was his best fit. Robinson played mostly basketball growing up, but gravitated to the football field, moving from defense to the offensive line as a junior in high school.

    And despite very different career paths, Matthews and Robinson are only eight months apart in age.

    While Matthews is widely viewed as the safer choice and Robinson is the sky high ceiling prospect, both players offer intriguing qualities that will appeal to NFL teams. So the question might not be who is better, but rather which style fits each particular team's need? Team A might prefer the “Steady Eddie” approach of Matthews, while Team B will gravitate towards the perceived upside of Robinson.

    Basically, you can't go wrong. Just pick your flavor.

    When asked about Robinson, Michigan's Taylor Lewan and some of the other top offensive line prospects in this class, Matthews kept it short and sweet.

    “They are great players, but I think I'm a great player too.”


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    Re: NFL combine: Jake Matthews or Greg Robinson? Pick your flavor

    Unofficially Greg Robinson ran a 4.88 40 and a 1.69 10 yard split. Jake Matthews ran a 5.00 and a 1.70 10 yard split.


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    Re: NFL combine: Jake Matthews or Greg Robinson? Pick your flavor

    Thanks for the update sosa, they seem really close in many aspects just a pick your flavor deal with them.

    I watched a really nice innerview with Taylor Lewan on the NFL Network pre combine show. He seems to be a really together guy, great attitude and very sharp. Also he has ties to Big Jake as he mentioned asking his thoughts on this process and was happy to have had his opinions to lean on. Might make for a great connection for our OL I love the teacher mentor thing. Just a nice option if we don't go OL with our first pick and Taylor is sitting there waiting for us further down.

    Also as an aside many of us have been saying how excited we were with this seasons crop of guys and how the depth of this draft is extra ordinary. Just heard that mentioned multiple times by analysts as well as second hand from teams around the league. Seems the depth of this draft is over all very high, which I have been thinking and wondering about for a while. Good to see so many view it this way as well. Going to be a great year to get as many high round picks as possiable I believe. Trading back early and maybe trading back up later as we did last year might be a great way to maximize this draft and the prospects that are so highly touted.
    Last edited by Randart; -02-22-2014 at 12:42 PM.

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    Re: NFL combine: Jake Matthews or Greg Robinson? Pick your flavor

    Round 2:

    Jake Matthews ran a 4.91 40.
    Greg Robinson ran a 4.84 and 1.68 10 yard split.


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    Re: NFL combine: Jake Matthews or Greg Robinson? Pick your flavor

    Official times 40 yard dashes:

    Taylor Lewan: 4.87
    Greg Robinson: 4.92
    Jake Matthews: 5.07


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    Re: NFL combine: Jake Matthews or Greg Robinson? Pick your flavor

    It might not be a “who is better?” argument, but rather a “pick your flavor” situation.

    I think Robinson fits our situation a little better. We are going to be a run first team and he his a massive man that can create running lanes. He will be coached up and become a really good pass blocker as tine goes by.

    What would Gabe Jackson and Greg Robinson do for our run game?

    Greg Robinson, OT, Auburn (rSo) 6’5, 320
    Gabe Jackson, OG, Mississippi State (rSr) 6’4, 339
    turbofargo likes this.

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    Re: NFL combine: Jake Matthews or Greg Robinson? Pick your flavor

    Quote Originally Posted by Rambos View Post
    It might not be a “who is better?” argument, but rather a “pick your flavor” situation.

    I think Robinson fits our situation a little better. We are going to be a run first team and he his a massive man that can create running lanes. He will be coached up and become a really good pass blocker as tine goes by.

    What would Gabe Jackson and Greg Robinson do for our run game?

    Greg Robinson, OT, Auburn (rSo) 6’5, 320
    Gabe Jackson, OG, Mississippi State (rSr) 6’4, 339
    Hopefully we can re-sign Saffold. That way our line can be:

    Long/Robinson/Jones/Saffold/Barksdale

    That would be a very strong offensive line. One that can pass protect and run block. That would open some huge holes for our RB's, plus imagine the blocking they'd hold for Sam? It'd be great to see.
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    Re: NFL combine: Jake Matthews or Greg Robinson? Pick your flavor

    Falling in love with Robinson more and more.

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    Re: NFL combine: Jake Matthews or Greg Robinson? Pick your flavor

    Quote Originally Posted by sosa39rams View Post
    Hopefully we can re-sign Saffold. That way our line can be:

    Long/Robinson/Jones/Saffold/Barksdale

    That would be a very strong offensive line. One that can pass protect and run block. That would open some huge holes for our RB's, plus imagine the blocking they'd hold for Sam? It'd be great to see.
    Definitely agree, people seem to think that the Rams need a stud RT to complete our O-Line; I think having a big mauler at RG would help us just as much.

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    Re: NFL combine: Jake Matthews or Greg Robinson? Pick your flavor

    Quote Originally Posted by sosa39rams View Post
    Hopefully we can re-sign Saffold. That way our line can be:

    Long/Robinson/Jones/Saffold/Barksdale

    That would be a very strong offensive line. One that can pass protect and run block. That would open some huge holes for our RB's, plus imagine the blocking they'd hold for Sam? It'd be great to see.
    Not too shabby. If we resign Saffold I would like this.

    Long/Saffold/Jones/Jackson/Robinson

    Barksdale would be swing man.

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    Re: NFL combine: Jake Matthews or Greg Robinson? Pick your flavor

    Quote Originally Posted by Rambos View Post
    Not too shabby. If we resign Saffold I would like this.

    Long/Saffold/Jones/Jackson/Robinson

    Barksdale would be swing man.
    Could possibly be one of the best O-Lines in the NFL, but I'd only draft Robinson if Clowney is off the board or we trade down
    Fortuninerhater likes this.

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    Re: NFL combine: Jake Matthews or Greg Robinson? Pick your flavor

    Quote Originally Posted by Rambos View Post
    Not too shabby. If we resign Saffold I would like this.

    Long/Saffold/Jones/Jackson/Robinson

    Barksdale would be swing man.
    I've got no interest in moving Greg Robinson to RT, but Fisher may have some other ideas.


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    Re: NFL combine: Jake Matthews or Greg Robinson? Pick your flavor

    Prefer Matthews, guy was a stud today in positional skill drills.


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    Re: NFL combine: Jake Matthews or Greg Robinson? Pick your flavor

    I watched the Combine and like many of you was very impressed with Matthews, Robinson and Lewan at OT and Su'a Filo, Jackson at OG.

    In my opinion so much of what we do on the O-Line during the draft will rest upon the outcome of our negotiations with Rodger Saffold. Several "draft experts" claimed that if we re-sign Rodger we will not be drafting an OT in round 1. I cannot really argue with that logic. We'd have 3 OT's who can start (Long, Saffold and Barksdale). Spending a round 1 pick with that situation may be a luxury given our other needs. The days of drafting a guy early and letting him ride the bench until he's ready to start are over. A round 1 pick especially a top 10 pick must be plug 'n play. So while I really would love to have a Matthews, Robinson or Lewan on our team, it may not happen if Saffold stays. As for the interior that is definitely a need that should be addressed in round 2.

    Looking forward to the next 3 days of the Combine. Especially interested in the secondary players and OLB's. Gregg Williams the "mad scientist" will be interested.

    Go Rams!

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    Re: NFL combine: Jake Matthews or Greg Robinson? Pick your flavor

    I've said this before, I'm tired of "unrefined"projects with great measurables and potential. Give me the guy who is polished and ready to go. Matthews is that guy.
    Tampa_Ram, RockinRam and Mikey like this.

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