Lane Johnson might be the offensive linemen with the best all-around measurables, but Terron Armstead gets boasting rights for the best 40-time of the group with an electrifying 4.71 despite weighing more than 300 pounds.
This explosive project tackle from Arkansas-Pine Bluff is loaded with upside and athletic ability. He also has the ideal frame and foot quickness to translate on the left side. He’s not a plug-and-go type of guy, but in terms of pure raw ability, Terron is a great value pick at No. 75.
Expectations for Armstead are high, but they also come with the realistic understanding that patience is going to apply here. He definitely has starting potential, but his technique and overall understanding of the tackle position is quite a ways from being trustworthy.
Inconsistency was the biggest issue with Armstead’s tape. He didn’t seem to use his size advantage well and failed to show good body control and balance for a guy who tested as well as he did at the combine.
Come year two or three, expect Armstead to step in and really compete for that starting left tackle spot.
Armstead is an intriguing prospect because he has the ability to play either tackle position. Considering the Saints lost Jermon Bushrod to the Bears in free agency, this was absolutely a position of need. The only problem is that they ended up taking a guy who should not be thrown into the fire right away.
Armstead is a project player at best and needs some seasoning before you serve him up on a plate and feed him to the wolves.
Grade the selection
It makes sense not to pass up a guy with this sort of talent and upside in the third round. If Terron turns out to be a bust, well, then it didn’t really cost them much beyond opportunity cost, especially considering some experts, such as former GM Charley Casserly, were mocking him to go late in the first round to Green Bay.
Terron has long-term starting potential, and any risk associated with his technique and strength of opponents should be minimized by going much later than expected.