The Falcons could use a developmental prospect at left tackle should they pass on one at the top of the first round or even trade up for Jadeveon Clowney. Seantrel Henderson is just one of the names linked to the Falcons throughout the process.
Charlie Campbell of Walter Football reported during the week leading up to the Senior Bowl on the connection between the big tackle and Atlanta offensive line coach Mike Tice:
Don't be surprised if the Atlanta Falcons draft Miami offensive tackle Seantrel Henderson in the mid rounds. Falcons offensive line coach Mike Tice has been giving Henderson a lot of extra attention in practice this week. Henderson and Tice both hail from Minnesota, and as one contact from Minnesota said, "there are so few of us guys from Minnesota in this industry, we kind of stick together and look out for another."
Henderson needs a firm hand to give him some guidance and discipline. Tice, a big man who commands respect with the experience of being a player and head coach, is the perfect mentor to straighten out the gifted Henderson. The Falcons have stated that they want to get bigger and more physical on the offensive line. Henderson would provide a lot of upside to develop. Tice and Atlanta would be a perfect landing spot for Henderson, and those stars could be aligning.
So it wouldn’t be shocking if the Falcons do decide to bring in the massive Miami prospect. Henderson wouldn’t be forced to start right away unless Sam Baker suffered another major injury, but he’d have the ideal coaching staff to teach him the right way to play.
University of Miami, Florida
Combine/Pro Day Measurements
Height: 6'7-1/8" Weight: 331 pounds
Arm Length: 34-5/8" Hand Measurement: 10-1/2"
40 yard dash: 5.14 sec. 10 yard split: 1.71 sec.
20 yard shuttle: 4.77 sec. 3-cone Drill: 8.15 sec.
Vertical Jump: 24.0" Broad Jump: 7'11"
2013: eight games started, 12 games played at right tackle
2012: seven games started, 11 games played at right tackle
2011: two games started, eight games played at right tackle
2010: nine games started, 12 games played at right tackle
Henderson has some of the best athleticism among the bigger offensive tackles in this entire draft. He could play either side of the line as a blindside protecting left tackle or a long-time road-grating right tackle. When he’s on and plays to his potential, he looks like he could be a better prospect than Auburn's Greg Robinson.
He’s strong, explosive and has a knack for climbing to the second level of the defense. On top of that, his length and quick feet reveal a potential to be a blindside anchor in the pros. If he can put it all together in the NFL, he could be something special.
One of the biggest weaknesses for Henderson is his lack of proper technique in both his kick-slide and his punch. He needs to get more fluid in his movement and learn how to supplement his dominating strength with solid footwork.
If he can learn how to drive defenders back instead of just pushing into them, he could be very dangerous in the running game. Off-field issues and injury concerns could also pose a problem. He needs to play more like Tarzan and less like Jane when he gets to the NFL.
How does he fit the Comrade Filter?
Henderson was never arrested, according to TwinCities.com's Andy Greder, but he was suspended multiple times by the Miami coaching staff during his college career. However, since he’s just 21 years old, NFL teams will have to wonder whether it's immaturity or a more significant underlying issue.
The Falcons will love his unique athleticism, but he will have to show that he’s willing to put in the work on and off the field. If he can show the Falcons staff that he’s a hard worker, taking him in the fourth or fifth round could be the steal of the draft.
For a prospect with such great potential, he is as raw as an uncooked steak. Henderson could be a great left tackle and has the potential to be the next Jason Peters as a high-potential hit for his NFL team. But he needs the proper coaching when he gets into the NFL.
He could slip a good bit in the draft due to character concerns. However, the right coach will be willing to work with him and try to develop him. If he turns it around in the pros, we could be looking at one of the all-time greats to ever play the position.
How he would fit into the Falcons' plans
If the Falcons decide to take Henderson, he’s a name to watch out for starting in the fourth round and could be taken as late as the compensatory seventh-round range. Atlanta and coach Tice would instantly start working on his technique.
Henderson could start out for the Falcons as a reserve tackle, basically redshirting his first season, in much the same way that Lamar Holmes did. After that, if he can finally put it all together, he could very well wind up the starting left or right tackle.
All stats used are either from Pro Football Focus' Premium Stats (subscription required), ESPN, CFBStats or the NFL. All combine and pro day info is courtesy NFL Draft Scout. All contract information is courtesy of Spotrac and Rotoworld.
Scott Carasik is a Featured Columnist for Bleacher Report. He covers the Atlanta Falcons, College Football, NFL and the NFL draft. He also runs DraftFalcons.com.
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