2015 NFL Draft Profile: A.J. Cann, G South Carolina


South Carolina guard A.J. Cann is the kind of player that NFL teams will hope will slide to their second round pick.  He’s big, physical, and agile player how has shown that he can succeed at the professional level through his 4 years at the NCAA level.  Perhaps his best trait seems to be his discipline, where he knows his limits when it comes to how physical he can be before a flag is thrown and how long to engage before moving on to the next level.

The concerns about Cann seem kind of minor.  There are some concerns about using him in a zone blocking scheme compared to a power run scheme, but I think that he is smart enough to be able to adapt to other systems at the NFL level.  There is also worry that he lacks the power to finish as a right guard and could only be a left guard in the pros, but again, I think that’s not as big of an issue as some are making it out to be.

A.J. Cann didn’t participate in the speed and agility portions of the combine, but showed solid strength at the bench press.  While pure guards rarely wow a team enough to use a first round selection on one, Cann is the kind of guy that a needy team could take with a late first round selection because of his history of success at the position and football intelligence.

Oct 18, 2014; Columbia, SC, USA; South Carolina Gamecocks guard A.J. Cann (50) on the sidelines against the Furman Paladins in the second half at Williams-Brice Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports

Combine Measurables:

  • Height: 6’3″
  • Weight: 313 pounds
  • Arm Length: 32 5/8″
  • Hand Size: 10 1/4″
  • 40 Yard Dash: N/A
  • Bench Press: 26 reps
  • Vertical Jump: N/A
  • Broad Jump: N/A
  • 3 Cone Drill: N/A
  • 20 Yard Shuttle: N/A

Draft Projection

A.J. Cann is the #43 overall prospect in the 2015 NFL Draft according to CBS Sports and is their #1 guard available in this draft class.  He’s projected to be a second round selection.

NFL Player Comparison

Fit For The Vikings

Minnesota will be looking for a starter at the left guard position after losing Charlie Johnson in free agency.  If nothing, expect the Vikings to go after some depth or competition at the spot.

My Take

If Minnesota fails to get a tackle/guard prospect in the first round of the 2015 NFL Draft, they could look to A.J. Cann in the second round.  I’d be more than fine with the Vikings using their second selection on him if he falls to that point, but it’s highly unlikely that he lasts that long.

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