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RpMc

2.58 - MIN: Ezra Cleveland T/Boise State

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If your in a competing\contending window, i think a GM would be just as inclined to draft the 23 as the 21 year old, since there is a general sentiment that the 23 year body might be more ready and they may have more experience in offenses\defenses

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Posted (edited)

Made some edits of Ezra Cleveland film from 2017:

He looks big and strong enough to play in the NFL even at 19. The Colorado State game is especially impressive for a teenager. And yet 3 years later, the conventional wisdom is that he needs a redshirt rookie year in the NFL to gain play strength.

The more I watch him, I think he could play guard. He definitely moves people off the line when he’s run blocking.

If you’ve watched one of both of those videos, here’s Brian O’Neill in his draft year to compare and contrast:

O’Neill is much lighter on his feet, both for good (getting downfield on the screen, getting wide to pass block) and bad (unable to anchor a couple of times, pushed back in the run game.

Still can’t believe anyone sees Cleveland as being especially similar to O’Neill.  

Edited by Krauser

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Ezra Cleveland played great against the Lions, the blocks he made down field were amazing and his athletic ability at the guard position is pretty difficult for teams to handle.  Been playing lights out along with the entire OL, Reiff has been great and they are really worked well as a unit and not getting over powered or pushed around either.  Cleveland has been awesome though and has really impressed as a rookie.  Doubt Samia will ever take that OG spot back or Elflein for that matter.  Dozier has been solid as well at the other OG and Bradbury is much improved from last season.

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13 hours ago, Ozzy said:

Ezra Cleveland played great against the Lions, the blocks he made down field were amazing and his athletic ability at the guard position is pretty difficult for teams to handle.  Been playing lights out along with the entire OL, Reiff has been great and they are really worked well as a unit and not getting over powered or pushed around either.  Cleveland has been awesome though and has really impressed as a rookie.  Doubt Samia will ever take that OG spot back or Elflein for that matter.  Dozier has been solid as well at the other OG and Bradbury is much improved from last season.

Agreed on all counts. Competent OG play, along with Bradbury's progression have helped move the iOL in the right direction.

At this point I'm tempted to just plug Cleveland in as long term RG and turn our focus to upgrading Dozier at LG.

I'm coming around to @SemperFeist's idea of extending Reiff.

Reiff-???-Bradbury-Cleveland-O'Neill

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5 hours ago, VikeManDan said:

Agreed on all counts. Competent OG play, along with Bradbury's progression have helped move the iOL in the right direction.

At this point I'm tempted to just plug Cleveland in as long term RG and turn our focus to upgrading Dozier at LG.

I'm coming around to @SemperFeist's idea of extending Reiff.

Reiff-???-Bradbury-Cleveland-O'Neill

Yeah I agree, Cleveland should be long term RG potentially.  Dozier I would be fine with at OG but sure maybe upgrade possibly, most likely then Cleveland would more to LG and a new one at RG but who knows.

 

Reiff I am fine playing out the next two seasons then see where he is.  Then again they could save a good amount of money getting rid of him I assume, and say plug and play Alex Leatherwood or Jackson Carman in his spot instantly.  Doubt Reiff can keep up this level of play but will see.  Would love to get Udoh some run and see where he is but doubt that will happen.  

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3 hours ago, Ozzy said:

Yeah I agree, Cleveland should be long term RG potentially.  Dozier I would be fine with at OG but sure maybe upgrade possibly, most likely then Cleveland would more to LG and a new one at RG but who knows.

 

Reiff I am fine playing out the next two seasons then see where he is.  Then again they could save a good amount of money getting rid of him I assume, and say plug and play Alex Leatherwood or Jackson Carman in his spot instantly.  Doubt Reiff can keep up this level of play but will see.  Would love to get Udoh some run and see where he is but doubt that will happen.  

So, do you think it would be better to flip O'Neill over to LT and insert Udoh at RT?  Leave EC at RG?  It sure would be nice to have a dominant OL for a long time.

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38 minutes ago, perrynoid said:

So, do you think it would be better to flip O'Neill over to LT and insert Udoh at RT?  Leave EC at RG?  It sure would be nice to have a dominant OL for a long time.

I am sure that is a possibility, but with Reiff playing well he is not going anywhere next year either potentially.  I am saying it would be nice to know if Udoh is worth playing at RT or not but might not work this year unless someone gets hurt.  O'Neill sure could play LT but has been decent at RT so why move him, and last year not sure he was all that great at LT when he played.  Cleveland I am fine with leaving at guard.  Why mess with it when they are playing so great on the offensive line and a massive part is Cleveland at guard over Samia and or Elflein.  

Then again maybe Cook is making them all look better than they are because he is just that good and is just playing that great.  If the Vikings could not run the ball and needed to throw the ball 30-45 times in a game, not sure they could hold up in pass pro.  But running the ball right now they are really doing a good job, real test will be against Chicago who killed them last year defensively I thought, made them look quite bad.  

 

Last two games for Minnesota, Kirk threw the ball 14 times and 20 times in two solid wins.  They ran the ball 34 times for 5 + per carry and then again 34 times for 8+ yards per carry.  There is a reason they look good on the OL, lack of pass pro is important, less chance to get beat but also do not put the ball in Kirk's hands more than it needs to be.  Sure he keeps the team honest and has passed the ball well when needed, but also is not the center of the offense and cannot mess things up the less he touches it.

 

With how they play on the offensive line in this system, I think a lot of teams have a hard time with Bradbury and Cleveland, both are so athletic on the inside, and Bradbury does not get pushed around which he really did last season.  

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