He proved to be an immediate standout with the Golden Flashes, starting all 12 games at right tackle as a true freshman.
Winters slid over to left tackle for eight games as a sophomore (starting the other four at right tackle) and earned third-team all-conference honors. He steadily rose to second-team accolades as a junior and first-team recognition in 2012, earning just the second invitation to the Senior Bowl in school history.
Though 33 of his 49 career starts have come at left tackle, Winters' NFL future may lie at right tackle or perhaps even inside at guard. He has the requisite height to play on the outside, but he has developed into a standout based more on his physicality and toughness rather than elite athleticism.
Plays with a wide base and shuffles well laterally to remain squarely in front of the pass-rusher, controlling him with his upper-body strength. Three-year high school letterman in wrestling and it shows in his play. Uses his hands and leverage well to control his opponent, seeming to enjoy the physicality and one-on-one nature of the game. Strength and tenacity are especially evident when run-blocking, as he latches onto his opponent and keeps driving his legs to finish blocks until the whistle is blown.
Excellent durability. Played in all 49 games of his collegiate career. Showed his toughness in playing through a left shoulder dislocation (third game of the season) that left him at what he described as "70 percent." The injury originally occurred during the state wrestling tournament during his sophomore year of high school and ultimately required surgery following the 2011 season.
WEAKNESSES: May not possess the foot speed or flexibility required to remain at left tackle against NFL pass rushers. Has been able to rely on his strength and tenacity at this level but consistently plays with a high pad level, negating his own power and losing out on the leverage battle. Projected by many as a guard but has no experience inside. Shoulder injury requires a close medical evaluation.
COMPARES TO: Adam Snyder, OG, Arizona Cardinals -- Like Snyder, Winters' value lies in his toughness, physicality, durability and potential versatility.