Kentucky Wildcats Football: Checking Larry Warford’s NFL Draft Stock

 

Jan 26, 2013; Mobile, AL, USA; Senior Bowl south squad offensive lineman Larry Warford of Kentucky (67) against the Senior Bowl north squad during the first half of the Senior Bowl at Ladd-Peebles Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

 

Former Kentucky offensive guard Larry Warford has seen his stock rise as much as any NFL Draft prospect as of late. After an outstanding Senior Bowl week, followed up by a great showing at the scouting combine, Warford has gone from a second-to-third-round projection, to firmly being entrenched in the second-round, and it wouldn’t be a shock to see him drafted at the very end of the first=round. Most scouts aren’t seeing much of a difference between he and Alabama’s Chance Warmack or North Carolina’s Jonathan Cooper, both of whom are projected to go in the first-round.

ESPN NFL Draft experts Mel Kiper Jr. and Todd McShay both believe Warford is a top-60 player, and should be able to sneak into the end of the second-round the same route that Randall Cobb took in going from UK to the NFL.

 

Here’s the ESPN evaluation of Warford:

Pass Protection 2 Just decent quickness in set. Lacks elite lateral agility but does a solid job of mirroring and sliding versus double moves. Keeps his feet moving and stays balanced when working laterally. Better balance in pass pro than he does as a run blocker in space. Shows outstanding awareness in pass pro. Plays with a wide base and does a nice job of anchoring versus bull rush when he’s set initially. Displays a powerful initial punch to jar defenders.
Run Blocking 2 Thick, wide-body run blocker. Shows good initial pop and strong lower body to drive defenders off the line once he locks on. Gets out quickly and takes good initial angles on pulls, traps and second-level blocks. Has good straight-line speed for size and generally gets to the spot in time to make solid initial contact. However, he falls off too many blocks due to tendency of lunging into initial contact instead of bringing feet with him. Needs to do a better job with hand placement. Also dips his head while making initial contact in space too often.
Awareness 2 Experienced, savvy OG prospect. Outstanding awareness in pass pro. Does a very good job of providing help while maintaining solid positioning to pick any delayed pressure. Occasionally overruns his target and can appear a bit lost as a run blocker in space.
Toughness 2 Flashes a mean streak. Overall effort is good. Mentally tough. Clearly wears down late in games but effort does not drop off. Almost always plays through the whistle and frequently looks for more contact as he’s working down the field as a run blocker.

 

 

 

 

Topics: Kentucky Wildcats Football, Larry Warford

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