Five Other Offensive Linemen to Consider ... 1. Braden Brown, BYU, 6-6, 310, 5.20 ... 2. Theo Goins, Central Florida, 6-5, 313, 5.36* ... 3. Luke Marquardt, Azusa-Pacific, 6-9, 315, 5.34 ... 4. Vinston Painter, Virginia Tech, 6-4, 306, 4.90 ...5. Matt Summers-Gavin, California, 6-4, 310, 5.49* - Rob Rang, NFLDraftScout.com
Armstead was an injury replacement for Dallas Thomas at the Senior Bowl and didn't look out of place in Mobile. He had a tough start in the final practce with some ugly reps in one-on-one drills, but he recovered and improved throughout practice, finishing strong and earning some praise from coaches.
Members of the SWAC weren't the least bit surprised by his success. He's been a dominant force at this level throughout his career, earning all-conference honors following each of the past three seasons. He was a highly regarded prep prospect but elected to sign with Arkansas Pine-Bluff because it was the only university willing to allow him to compete in both football and track. It isn't difficult to understand why Armstead might want to pursue his opportunities in track and field... despite only participating in the sport for two years, he won the state championship in shot put (long was 62'3").
Shockingly athletic and having established that he can play with anyone, Armstead might be the best offensive tackle no one is talking about... yet.
WEAKNESSES: A better athlete than football player, at this time. Possesses excellent speed but too often gets to the second level only to lose sight of his target. Provides an explosive pop but needs to improve his upper body and hand strength to latch on and sustain his blocks. Does not do a good enough job of finishing blocks at the SWAC level. Struggled a bit anchoring against powerful rushers at the East-West and Senior Bowl. Possesses obvious upside but might need a year in the weight room to compete at the NFL level.
Compares to: Joe Staley, OT, San Francisco 49ers -- Savvy scouts had been watching Staley dominate the MAC for years but he didn't really begin earning national attention until a strong effort at the Senior Bowl and dazzling workout at the 2007 Combine. Should Armstead commit to the game with the intensity that Staley has, he too could wind up emerging as an upper-echelon blindside tackle in the NFL.