New York Giants select Ereck Flowers No. 9 in the 2015 NFL draft
Miami's Ereck Flowers will definitely add a lot of power to a Giants offensive line in some turmoil and allow the planned move of Justin Pugh to right guard, if that is how they want to go. The 6'6", 329-pound Flowers may be the best overall run blocker in this draft class—he fires out with authority, and he loves to bully people around. The problem with picking him this high is that Flowers's pass protection is very much a work in progress. His kick-step is choppy at best, and he can be beaten by speed rushers to either side.
With some technique work, Flowers could be a complete tackle, but NFL teams don't take linemen in the top 10 to let them develop. He'll be starting right away, and he may struggle to keep Eli Manning protected early on.
Strengths: Arguably plays with as much of an edge as any offensive lineman in this draft class. Stays engaged up to, and at times even through, the whistle. He wants to bury any defender in his path, with the strength to do so in the run game. Checks off the toughness box, too—Flowers missed just one game after surgery on his injured knee last season. Quick getting lateral or forward, a skill that should only improve as he settles into an NFL offense. Stands 6'6" and has 34 1/2-inch arms, so he can hide some of his mistakes with his size. Adept at finding blitzers. Hard for pass-rushers to run through because of base. Can set and reset when dealing with power attacks. Recovers well in general, if he's beaten wide.—CB
Weaknesses: Team that drafts him will have to live with some penalties. Will grab hold of defenders if he's about to be beaten, and he starts from a wide arm position as it is. Very clunky footwork during pass-blocking drills at the combine. Those issues are apparent on some of Flowers's film, as well. Upper body gets ahead of his feet, leaving him in difficult spots, leading to some of those penalties. Not as dominant a run blocker as his size might indicate, especially when he's on the move to the second level. Might need to tone down his aggressiveness some so as to not find himself in post-whistle trouble.—CB
Player comparison: Cordy Glenn
GALLERY: SCENES FROM THE NFL DRAFT