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Alijah Vera-Tucker NFL Draft 2021: Scouting Report for New York Jets OL

BR NFL Scouting DepartmentContributor IApril 30, 2021

Southern California offensive lineman Alijah Vera-Tucker (75) in the second half during an NCAA college football game against Arizona, Saturday, Nov. 14, 2020, in Tucson, Ariz. Southern California won 34-30. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)
Rick Scuteri/Associated Press


HEIGHT:
 6'4 ½"

WEIGHT: 308


POSITIVES

—Plays with excellent weight distribution as a pass protector and fluidly redirects to mirror rushers.

—More of a grabber than a puncher with the hand placement to quickly latch into the armpit of defenders to create leverage.

—Smoothly transitions and drops his hips to anchor with the posterior strength to stifle the bull rush.

—Gets his second step in the ground quickly to generate tremendous initial explosiveness as a run-blocker.

—Has the girth, grip strength and square power to move and steer defenders with ease.

—Takes good angles with refined movement skills when climbing to the second level to locate, track and fit on his target.

—Aggressive and physical finisher on a snap-to-snap basis.

   

NEGATIVES

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—Range will be tested in his pass set when on an island at left tackle against top competition (ex: 2020 vs. Oregon DE Kayvon Thibodeaux).

—Occasionally leans into angle-drive blocks rather than unlock his hips, causing his pads to rise and base to narrow.

—Could have better snap timing out of his stance on obvious passing downs.

   

2020 STATISTICS

—Seven starts at left tackle.

—First-team All-Pac 12 and winner of the Morris Trophy.

   

NOTES

—Thirty-two career games with 20 starts (13 at left guard, seven at left tackle).

—Born Solomon Alijah Tucker but started going by "Vera-Tucker" in high school to honor his stepdad's side of the family.

   

OVERALL

Vera-Tucker will turn 22 years old in June with only 20 games of starting experience under his belt split between two positions, yet he possesses a remarkably polished skill set with the size, play speed, competitive toughness and mental processing to make an instant impact inside at guard as a rookie with the ability to play tackle if need be.

He is light on his feet with tremendous stability and composure in space as a pass protector and run-blocker with the physicality, girth and power to fit in any scheme. He needs to clean up his technique and posture on angle-drive and gap double-teams but has the physical tools and refinement in the other parts of his game to be an immediate impact starter.

   

GRADE: 8.5/10 (1st Round)

OVERALL RANK13/300

POSITION RANK: IOL2

PRO COMPARISON: Joel Bitonio

   

Written by B/R NFL Scout Brandon Thorn

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