Detroit Lions 2013 NFL Draft: Reaction to the Round 3 OG Larry Warford Pick
Larry Warford is a huge steal! I honestly thought that Warford would have been a great value player in round 2, so without a doubt I think he is a massive steal in the third round.
Warford's game is built around his size. He is a mountain of a man who has long arms and a powerful body. However, he also has the quick feet that lets him hold his own in pass protection.
In the run game, Warford is only going to do one thing: He will take the man opposite him and drive him backwards. He does not have the speed and agility to perform in a zone blocking scheme, and he lacks the skill set or technique to be a great second level blocker. However, in a man/power scheme like the one the Lions run, his ability to drive back defenders and clear holes is absolutely essential. This is exactly what the Lions have been missing in the middle of the offensive line for a long time, and Warford will bring it back in spades.
Warford's presence should also make Dominic Raiola much better. While Raiola lacks the size to dominate people one-on-one, he is great as a help blocker and second level destroyer. With a beast like Warford beside him, he should be able to get back to what he does best.
Despite his size, Warford is also extremely good as a pass-protector. He can shuffle his feet to stay in front of people, and his long arms and powerful build means that he can drop anchor and just refuse to be driven backwards. He will struggle against really quick three-technique defensive tackles until he learns to use his length and strength to neutralize speed better, but he still is a major upgrade over Stephen Peterman at right guard.
Pick Grade: A+
I honestly never saw this eventuating, and Warford in the third round is sure to go down as one of Martin Mayhew's best picks with the Lions. Now all the Lions have to do is trade back into the third round to get Quinton Patton or Terron Armstead and this would turn into one of the best draft classes in 2013 after two days.
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