Ezra Cleveland NFL Draft 2020: Scouting Report for Minnesota Vikings' Pick

Matt Miller@nfldraftscoutNFL Draft Lead WriterApril 25, 2020

Boise State offensive lineman Ezra Cleveland (76) during the first half of an NCAA college football game against Hawaii, Saturday, Oct. 12, 2019, in Boise, Idaho. Boise State won 59-37. (AP Photo/Steve Conner)
Steve Conner/Associated Press

OT Ezra Cleveland, Boise State

    

STRENGTHS

—A natural athlete who looks the part on paper at 6'6", 311 pounds with 4.93-second 40-yard-dash speed at the NFL Scouting Combine in addition to solid agility drills.

—Three-year starter at left tackle for Boise State and has very good experience and rep count.

—Poised and patient waiting for rushers to expose themselves before hitting them with his punch.

—Naturally smooth and fluid when asked to slide from his spot or get upfield in the run game.

—Ideal body and agility for a zone-blocking scheme.

    

WEAKNESSES

—Does not play with strength needed to keep pass-rushers from beating him consistently with bull-rushes and power moves.

—Dealt with a turf toe injury all of 2019 that affected his balance.

—Cannot sit down and drop anchor against rushers to shut them down when chest-to-chest.

—Can match quickness off the corner but can't recover when a rusher hits him with a speed-to-power conversion.

—It could all be related to his toe injury, but Cleveland did not play with the required power or toughness to be an NFL starter.

   

OVERALL

Cleveland could be the biggest miss or hit at offensive tackle depending on how you view the toe injury that held him back for all of 2019. If you see that as the reason for his lack of power, his athleticism and poise make him look like a starter. But if power is important, he's going to struggle to see the field Year 1 barring a major comeback from an injury that limited his practice time. As one of the more polarizing players in this class, Cleveland carries a considerable amount of boom-or-bust potential.

   

GRADE: 72

PRO COMPARISON: Brian O'Neill/Garett Bolles

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