STRENGTHS: Tall, barrel-chested center with surprising mobility. Good initial quickness off the ball. Can turn and seal off defenders in the running game, creating effective lanes. Gets a quick punch on his opponent and slides well laterally to contain in pass protection. Good lateral agility and surprising straight-line speed to block at the second level, showing above average change of direction to adjust to moving targets. Also an effective short-yardage run blocker due to good leg drive and determination. Reliable in the shotgun and traditional snapping. Tough and durable. Started the final 51 games of his collegiate career. Good bloodlines. Brother Cody played defensive tackle at Southern Utah and is now with the Baltimore Ravens. WEAKNESSES: Bit top-heavy and may possess shorter-than-ideal arms as too often strong defensive tackles are able to slip free from his blocks. Average knee bend and can get himself in trouble when he tires and bends at the waist, losing ground to bull rushers and leaving himself vulnerable to swim moves over the top. Missed all but the first two games of the 2009 season with a knee injury. COMPARES TO: Jonathan Goodwin, 49ers: Like the 49ers' standout, Larsen is a physical, battle-tested pivot with the size and light feet to handle playing guard in a pinch. --Rob Rang
Larsen comes from good football bloodlines, as his brother, Cody, is a defensive tackle for the Baltimore Ravens after playing for Southern Utah.Tyler Larsen played both sides of the line in high school, and was an immediate contributor at Utah State in 2009 before suffering a season-ending knee injury in the second game and was awarded a medical redshirt.He returned to start all 12 games at center in 2010, making all of the blocking calls. Larsen started all 13 games again the following season, earning first-team all-WAC honors while grading out at a team-best 89 percent overall.The durable pivot started 13 more games and again earned first-team all-conference honors as a junior, becoming the first two-time first-team all-conference selection at Utah State since Kevin Robinson (2004, 2007) and the first offensive lineman to accomplish the feat since Mauricio Jourdan (1996-97). Larsen graded out at 86 percent overall in 2012.He capped his career with yet another first-team all-WAC season in 2013, becoming just the ninth Aggie in school history to be a three-time first-team all-conference selection, joining Kent Ryan (1934-35-36), Murray Maughan (1938-39-40), Ralph Maughan (1942, 46-47), Guy McClure (1979-80-81), Dave Kuresa (1982-83-84), Brent Passey (1998-99-2000), Emmett White (1999-2000-01) and Bobby Wagner (2009-10-11). Larsen graded out above 86 percent in every game this year and above 90 percent five times, while recording 46 knockdowns. He was also a Remington Trophy finalist.After the 2009 knee injury, Larsen went on to play in 51 consecutive games over the next four season.
12/26/2013 - PLAYERS TO WATCH: C Tyler Larsen is one of the senior leaders in Utah State's experienced offensive line. One of six finalists for the 2013 Rimington Trophy, which is given annually to the most outstanding center in college football, Larsen has played in 51 straight games for Utah State. The 6-foot-4, 312-pound senior center anchors an offensive line that ranked fourth in the Mountain West and tied for 37th in the nation with an average of 32.6 points per game. - The Sports Xchange