2015 NFL Draft Profile: Laken Tomlinson, OG Duke


 Duke guard Laken Tomlinson is a smart offensive linemen.  He can easily identify stunts up front and adjust his coverage based on what he sees.  His large body size is also a big bonus for teams looking for guard to step into their lineup.  Tomlinson has the potential to be plugged right into a system because of his documented experience at the college level.

There are some concerns with his game though.  He needs to be able to engage a defender for longer without getting grabby.  At times, defenders can slip away from him after initial contact because of his slower lateral motions.  And when he does attempt to move side-to-side, he can be caught off balance and be beaten by agile opposition.

Lake Tomlinson is a guy that a team will look at drafting in hopes that they can help him become a complete guard at the NFL level.  It isn’t often that he’s overpowered, but will need help on developing his techniques and improving his range to have a chance at being a top shelf guard in the NFL.

Oct 18, 2014; Durham, NC, USA;Duke Blue Devils guard Laken Tomlinson (77) during the first half against the Virginia Cavaliers at Wallace Wade Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports

Combine Measurables:

  • Height: 6’3″
  • Weight: 323 pounds
  • Arm Length: 33 5/8″
  • Hand Size: 10 1/8″
  • 40 Yard Dash: 5.33 seconds
  • Bench Press: 25 reps
  • Vertical Jump: 31.5″
  • Broad Jump: 103.0″
  • 3 Cone Drill: 8.17 seconds
  • 20 Yard Shuttle: 4.87 seconds

Draft Projection

Laken Tomlinson is the #53 overall prospect in the 2015 NFL draft class according to CBS Sports and is their #2 available guard in the draft class.  He’s currently expected to be a second round draft pick.

NFL Player Comparison

  • NFL.com: Chris Watt, San Diego Chargers
  • CBSSports.com: N/A

Fit For The Vikings

Minnesota will likely be looking for a starting caliber guard to take the spot left by Charlie Johnson.  They could also look for a young backup with potential to develop in the system.

My Take

As long as you don’t ask him to do too much, Laken Tomlinson could be the kind of player that could fill in a starting role immediately.  He’ll need some time to be able to develop the intricacies of his game, but his flaws aren’t major enough to keep a team from using their second round draft pick on him.  If Minnesota decides to use their second round pick on Tomlinson, I’ll be fine with that decision.

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