It's very evident the Redskins need help at right tackle. It also looks like that help may have to arrive via the 2014 NFL Draft. Without a first round pick, and a top-heavy tackle class, the Redskins will have to be extra careful if they decide to use a high second round pick on what they hope will be their future right tackle. Homework will have to be done with a bit more diligence, and game tape will have to be scrutinized a bit more heavily. Personal workouts will also be a huge factor in determining who would best help the team as a right-side anchor.
In doing my annual scouting homework(and no, I'm not a former NFL scout), I have watched hours of film on many prospects, including, but not limited to, offensive tackle. One player I have spend an inordinate amount of time on is Virginia left tackle Morgan Moses.
From a physical standpoint, Moses looks the part, standing at an opposing 6'6" and weighing 314 pounds. He has 35 3/8" arms, and almost 10" hands. But this is where the comparisons to "good" stop.
First, let's take a look a bit further into his combine numbers. Now, for offensive linemen, there are two tests that I'm concerned about(aside from having a bench press of 225 pounds in the teens), and they are the 3-cone drill, and the short shuttle. Both of these drills measure the ability to start and stop quickly, and re-direct ones body weight - both huge areas for offensive linemen. Aside from this, these two drills also show me how a prospect can sink his hips, plant and drive, and whether or not the player has good ankle flexion(and if you know me at all, you'll realize this is something I talk about quite a bit).
Moses posted a 7.93 3-cone drill, and a 4.95 short shuttle. These were among the worst times of all the linemen at the combine. The top offensive line 3-cone drill was 7.30, and the best short shuttle was 4.37. To put these numbers into perspective, below are the top offensive tackles prospects and their times in both tests(3-cone listed first):
Matthews: 7.34, 4.47
Lewan: 7.39, 4.49
Robinson: 7.80, 4.86
Martin: 7.65, 4.59
Kouandjio: 7.71, 4.84
Bitonio: 7.37, 4.44
James: 7.42, 4.56
Mewhort: 7.79, 4.64
Below are three prospects who are know to have very heavy feet, and have continually struggled with speed rushers at the college level. These prospects are also being considered as mid-to-late round picks in the NFL Draft:
C Richardson: 7.70, 4.83
Henderson: 8.15, 4.77
Fleming: 8.24, 5.00
As you can see, Morgan Moses' numbers are worse than all but one prospect overall(Cameron Fleming), and are worse than all the prospects who are considered first/second round picks.
Now, I'd like to take a look at the film, and see if what I saw in these two tests also sticks out on tape.
I chose the 2012 North Carolina game, because I though overall, that UNC had a pretty good defense, and it was also a good film to watch Moses play right tackle, the position he'd play if he was drafted by the Redskins. A few things really stood out to me. First, it appears he's about half a second slower than his teammates off the snap. Second, he is a classic waist-bender in every sense of the word. Finally, he is really slow getting to the second level, and when he does finally get there, he often drops his head, and lunges towards his target, resulting in missed blocks.
Below are some points in the film that illustrate what I'm talking about above:
0:08 - Too slow recognizing the corner blitz.
0:35 - Does absolutely nothing on zone run.
0:54 - Way too slow off snap, and catches defender, instead of using hands to stone him.
1:02 - Poor job of chipping defender.
1:27 - Again, doesn't block anyone at second level.
2:24 - Drops head and loses defender(classic waist bending).
2:45 - Misses everyone at second level(yes, this is a common theme).
3:10 - Misses initial block at second level.
3:32 - Stands straight up, and gets blown up by defender at LOS.
3:38 - Blocks no one at second level.
4:08 - Fails to stay in front of defender, and gives up too early on play.
4:30 - Slow, lazy kick-step. Drops head, hands don't shoot, and doesn't engage defender.
5:40 - Even though this is a quick pass, you can easily see what I mean by bending at the waist, instead of sinking at the hips.
6:05 - Plays way too high and loses leverage.
6:20 - Poor footwork, and slow in ZBS to cut off defender.
6;26 - See comment above.
7:12 - First move off the snap is standing straight up.
7:46 - Poor job of blocking at second level. Does not keep his head up, and loses his target.
8:40 - Again, gets destroyed by defender attempting a reach block. Stays way too high, and doesn't have foot speed to cut off opponent.
9:04 - Completely misses cut block by goal line, and his man makes the play.
9:09 - Plays way to slow and high off the snap, and is easily beaten off the edge.
9:30 - Looks lazy in set-up, and gives up on play after 3 seconds.
9:44 - Slow coming off football, and doesn't block anyone.
In my opinion, Morgan Moses is much better suited in a RULE(power based) scheme, than he is as a zone blocker. He'll very likely be relegated to the right side, because he's simply too slow-of-foot to play left tackle, even though I think he does better as a senior on the left side. Moses does not sit over his hips, and tends to bend at the waist and drop his head, instead of sitting back in his stance, and shooting his hands while moving his feet.
Ultimately, there is a ton of work that needs to be done with Moses, before he is ready to contribute on Sundays. I would not use a high second round pick on what I believe is a developmental prospect.
The Washington Redskins need a right tackle, but I'd just say no to Morgan Moses.