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Rookie free agent profile: Tyler Donahue, T, Bowling Green

Ed Note: We are going to run some rookie free agent profiles this week from our friend Mike at RamView.

Tyler Donahue 6’6″ 298
T, Bowling Green

Rankings: 51st-ranked tackle by Pro Football Weekly. Graded as a player who could make an NFL training camp but would more likely play in a developmental league.

NFLDraftScout: 64th-ranked tackle, #999 player overall, free-agent grade.

Biography/honors:
2010: Started all 12 games. Started season at right tackle and moved to left tackle after the starter there was injured. All-Mid America Conference fourth team.
2009: Started all 13 games at right tackle.
2008: Appeared in 12 games.
2007: Appeared in 10 games.
2006: Redshirted.

Major: Sports management.

Injuries: None reported.

Pro Day Stats: (not invited to NFL Combine)
5.22 40 (would have been top 10 time for o-linemen at Combine)
1.75 10-yard split (1.81 was average for tackles at 2010 Combine)
4.70 short shuttle (lower-third)
7.77 3-cone drill (lower-third)
30” vertical leap (top 10)
8’5” broad jump (middle of the pack)
30 bench presses (only five o-linemen benched more at the Combine)

Positives: Can play right or left tackle or guard. Solid run-blocker with good size and wingspan. Gets off the football quickly and on time. Smart, understands angles, very good at mirroring opponents and keeping them within reach. Smooth footwork and lateral movement. Good pull-blocker, good at sealing the corner. Durable, played in 47 of 49 games in his career. Started 25 games final two years. Great technique, above-average range and coordination give him a shot in the pros.

Negatives: Needs to improve footwork in pass protection and use his hands better. Lacks great speed and gets beaten by speed rushers. Plays too upright, not enough knee-bend. Needs to get stronger to hold up against bull rushers. Doesn’t have strong punch. Can get rocked and overrun. Doesn’t hold his blocks to the end of the play. Not very physical in-line.

Compares to: former Rams tackle Phil Trautwein.

Fun Facts: Another Rams 2011 rookie free agent with bad bowl game memories. Donahue played in the 2009 Humanitarian Bowl, which Bowling Green lost to Idaho 43-42 on a TD and two-point conversion with 4 seconds left in the game. Bonus fact: Steve Spagnuolo was Bowling Green’s defensive backs coach in 1996-97.

RamView: Some draft analysts graded Donahue as a draftable prospect, so he’s not a bad value for the Rams as a free agent pickup. I draw the comparison to Trautwein because both men played in spread offenses and did their fair share of pass-protecting, and they’re both smart players with good technique. Donahue’s answered the critics and clearly got stronger in the offseason to have outbenched every o-lineman at the Combine but 5. He’s also a better athlete than Trautwein was when he came here, and Trautwein eventually made the main roster. Good lineman with a good skillset to build on – don’t sleep on Donahue, who I’d say has a good shot at landing a practice squad position.

Sources: Pro Football Weekly 2011 Draft Guide, NFLDraftScout.com, Consensus Draft Services, Bowling Green Athletics website, National Football Post

 


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