The Oregon offensive line has been a rapidly shifting part of the Ducks’ offense so far this season. Through seven games, the offensive line has seen a ton of injuries and as a result players have played positions not familiar to them. One player that has thrived in this has been Dawson Jaramillo.
Jaramillo has now played all positions on the line except center this season. While left tackle is his preferred spot, against UCLA he had to shift around due after players like Jackson Powers-Johnson and Steven Jones got banged up.
His ability to switch between different positions along the offensive line has been incredibly valuable for the Ducks. Mario Cristobal loves what he sees from him, saying that he could be the next big lineman for Oregon.
“Swiss Army Knife guy, that’s what he is,” Cristobal said on Monday. “All the tools, he’s got them all. He can snap, also plays right tackle, left tackle. He understands the game that way from the inside out and he’s gotten snaps at every single one of those positions.”
Despite having to move around throughout the UCLA game, he demonstrated his experience and talent as he was a part of the offensive line that allowed just one sack and three tackles for loss.
“He’s been here a long time, been through a lot,” Cristobal said. “He’s become an excellent football player and his value was tremendous on Saturday.”
As for Jaramillo himself, he's always looking for ways to improve. He emphasized preparation as something that's been integral to his on-field success this season.
“I think this group is prepared,” Jaramillo said. “I’ve been prepared the last couple of weeks to go in wherever, and every guy in the position group is the same way.”
One player that he looks up to is former teammate Calvin Throckmorton. Throckmorton, now a member of the New Orleans Saints, was also a valuable asset to the Oregon offensive line during his years as a Duck and made a name for himself by being versatile. While he was predominantly a right tackle, he made five starts at left tackle, three at right guard, and three at center.
Playing with Throckmorton for two years was a big help for Jaramillo, who now tries to put what he learned from the NFL lineman into practice.
“I’ve been looking up to a guy like that the last couple of years to see how he prepared, how he practiced,” Jaramillo said. “He was able to play any position that the coaches asked him to play.”
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So far this season, Jaramillo has done a great job of playing whenever and wherever he's been needed. Jaramillo helped the Ducks pull off the huge upset against Ohio State, and once again helped hold off a UCLA comeback.
As for his ability to gel with his teammates with so many rotations on the offensive line, he credits it to his relationship and trust with those he's going to battle with in the trenches.
“I think we’re all great friends,” he said. “During practice, during fall camp, Coach Mirabal was rotating guys all over the place. Throughout fall camp I played every single position with all different kinds of guys and so there’s just a real trust there.”
With the Ducks continuing to deal with injuries to the offensive line, it can be expected for Jaramillo to earn more reps against the Buffaloes this weekend and continue to develop as the ‘Swiss Army Knife guy’.
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