A three-year starter on the defensive line, Wrotto (pronounced ROTT-o) made a successful switch to the offensive line as a senior. It was not the first time the coaching staff had attempted to move him to the other side of the ball.
During 2005 spring drills, he was penciled in at left guard, but when injuries depleted the depth at defensive tackle in fall camp, Wrotto was shifted back to his original position. During the weeks of practice leading up to the 2005 Emerald Bowl, he lined up at right offensive tackle, but shifted back to strong-side defensive tackle for the game against Georgia.
Wrotto lettered three times in football at Brookwood High School. He was a Class 5A first-team All-State selection by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and named to the AJC's Top 50 in Georgia as a senior. He was rated the No. 46 player in Georgia by BorderWars.com and ranked among the nation's top 50 defensive tackles by Rivals.com, which also tabbed him the No. 42 prospect in Georgia.
During his final season, he recorded 61 tackles, with five stops for loss, 2.5 sacks and 16 quarterback pressures as a defensive tackle. As an offensive lineman, he graded 92 percent for blocking consistency and posted 46 knockdown blocks.
Wrotto enrolled at Georgia Tech in 2003 and was immediately thrust into the lineup at strong-side defensive tackle. He started 12 of 13 contests, producing 14 tackles (three solos) with a sack, four stops for losses and a fumble recovery.
As a sophomore, Wrotto manned the strong-side tackle position, starting nine of 12 games. He totaled 18 tackles (four solos), assisted on a sack and had 3.5 stops behind the line of scrimmage. He moved to left offensive guard in 2005 spring camp and was scheduled to start at that position as a sophomore.
However, while he showed promise there, his replacement at defensive tackle, Darryl Richard, tore a knee ligament late in spring drills. The injury sidelined Richard for the entire 2005 season, and Wrotto moved back to his old spot. He posted 13 tackles (seven solos) with 3.5 sacks, 4.5 stops for losses and a fumble recovery.
In 2006 spring camp, the coaches decided to permanently move Wrotto to right offensive tackle. The defensive coaches were trying to get head coach Chan Gailey to keep Wrotto on defense, but they had to fight Joe D'Alessandris, the offensive line coach, for him.
"Everything he has done, he's been a great fit for us," D'Alessandris said. "He's a wonderful person, a student of the game, a hard worker, very coachable. He wants to be successful and strives to be successful. When you get a package like that, you have a heckuva offensive lineman."
Wrotto insists he still has much to learn. The technique of playing offensive tackle is vastly different of that employed by defensive tackles, particularly when it comes to hands and feet. He started all year at right tackle, posting 65 knockdowns for an offense that averaged 332.07 yards per game.
He also got to show his tackling ability, recording three solo stops. He made a key play in Georgia Tech's win over North Carolina State with a touchdown-saving tackle on an interception return. Wolfpack safety Garland Heath picked off the ball at the N.C. State 30-yard line and appeared headed for the end zone, but Wrotto caught him at the Tech 27-yard line; the Tech defense then held and forced a field goal.
In 51 games at Georgia Tech, Wrotto started 46 times. He registered 65 knockdowns on offense and totaled 48 tackles (17 solos) with five sacks for minus-30 yards and 12 stops for losses totaling 40 yards. He also recovered a pair of fumbles.
Positives: Has a stocky frame with a wide rear and waist, thick shoulders and arms and room to add at least another 10 pounds of bulk to his frame
Has good lower body strength, long arms with good hand placement and extension and shows good mobility on the move
Light on his feet, demonstrating the range to get out in front on short pulls
Has the body control and adjustments to operate in space and is quick to get into the second level
Effective sliding back and mirroring edge rushers, showing the nimble feet to keep himself in front of his man
Has the quickness to recover when beaten and flashes good ability to make down blocks
Generates good pop and explosion on contact and has the lower body strength to gain movement off the snap
Has the natural leverage that lets him consistently get position to sustain blocks
Good drive blocker with the ability to get a good fit and drive
Moves his hips and feet well on pulls and traps, but needs to keep his head up better when on the move
Times up well on screens in space and can locate and make good contact on a linebacker playing in the second level
Has the upper body strength and hand punch to shock, and enough hip roll to explode behind his blocks
Drives his legs hard to get movement working in-line
Can slide laterally to get to his set point in order to shut down the speed rush
Maintains balance on the move and has the lower body strength to anchor.
Negatives: Very raw in his technique, but showed slow, steady improvement throughout the 2006 season
Lacks the height and reach to play tackle, but his trapping agility and squat frame make him a better fit as an offensive guard
Has a strong hand punch, but needs to keep his hands inside more to be more consistent in attempts to lock on and sustain
Played tentative at times in 2006, lacking the aggressive nature you would expect from a road grader
Quick to get into the second level, but when his hands get outside his frame, he will whiff and not always break down
Strong drive blocker, except when he gets too high in his stance, as he will lose balance and fall to the ground
Gets in front of the defender thanks to his nimble feet, but needs to finish more consistently (will let up and slip off blocks)
Must learn to take better angles working in space (takes a wide loop at times and gets lost moving up field)
Has good knee bend, but is prone to bending at the waist when he gets too tall coming off the ball and defenders can push him back into the pocket
Little slow to recognize and react at times
Still learning how to read coverages and when he hesitates coming off the snap, he gets his hands to wide and allows some inside penetration.
Compares To: CHRIS KUPER-Denver
Wrotto has quick feet, good short-area balance and very good upper body strength. What he lacks is experience on offense. Even though he played tackle as a senior, he projects inside at guard at the next level because he doesn't have the hand placement technique and fundamentals to be relied upon to handle edge rushers at this time. He is best not to be exposed on an island while learning under fire. He has good range on the move and when he gets his hands on a defender, he can shock and jolt. He is just going to need patient coaching to help him turn his athletic potential into production.
Wrotto started all fourteen games at right offensive tackle, registering 65 knockdowns and nine touchdown-resulting blocks for a unit that averaged 332.07 yards per game in total offense
Helped the Tech offense rank second in the Atlantic Coast Conference in rushing (164.2 ypg) and blocked for the ACC's leading rusher, Tashard Choice, who gained 1,473 yards
Charged with five quarterback sacks and one pressure as the offense was on the field for 895 plays.
|2006 Game Analysis|
In his first career start on the offensive line, Wrotto fared well, making six knockdowns, including one that leveled defensive tackle Derek Landri on Reggie Ball's 4-yard scoring strike to Calvin Johnson that ended a 74-yard, 7-play drive with 0:35 left in the first quarter
Head to Head Competition-DE#95-Victor Abiamiri-Two solo tackles.
Had another six knockdowns as the offense gained 315 yards, upending linebacker Jay McCurty on a 6-yard scoring scamper around right tackle by tailback Tashard Choice that concluded a 9-play, 82-yard first quarter series
Head to Head Competition-DE#21-Steve Tennin-One solo tackle.
Took down nose guard Franklin Lloyd on Reggie Ball's 55-yard scoring bomb to James Johnson early in the second quarter
But, with 1:13 before halftime, defensive end Kenny Mainor came over right tackle to sack Ball for an 8-yard loss at the GT 48
Head to Head Competition-DE#51-Kenny Mainor-Four tackles (3 solos), an 8-yard sack, two stops for minus 13 yards.
Struggled vs. the edge rush, seeing Jeffrey Fitzgerald break into the backfield three times over Wrotto's territory
The defensive end took down tailbacks Tashard Choice and Jamaal Evans for losses on third-down plays and also allowed the Cavalier to sack QB Reggie Ball for a 10-yard loss at the UVA 41 midway through the second quarter
Head to Head Competition-DE#95-Jeffrey Fitzgerald-Four solo tackles, a 10-yard sack, three stops for minus 15 yards.
Was penalized for holding midway through the third quarter, but made up for that miscue by leveling linebacker Vince Hall on a 5-yard touchdown run by Tashard Choice in the first quarter
Also tackled linebacker Brenden Hill after the defender intercepted a third-&-5 Reggie Ball pass at the GT 44 and returned it 26 yards with 9:35 left in the second quarter
Head to Head Competition-DE#90-Orion Martin-One solo tackle.
Struggled in the trenches, as Wrotto was penalized twice for holding midway through the second quarter and again for a false start with 7:47 left in the game
Head to Head Competition-DE#40-Jeremy Navarre-Five tackles (4 assists).
Wrotto was penalized for a false start at the Tech 11 four minutes into the third quarter and also gave up a pair of sacks
Defensive end Baraka Atkins tackled tailback Tashard Choice for a 1-yard loss midway through the first quarter and later on that drive, Atkins sacked QB Reggie Ball for a 10-yard loss on a second-&-goal play
Atkins again sacked Ball for minus 10 yards at the GT 36 with 3:33 to go before halftime
Head to Head Competition-DE#98-Baraka Atkins-Five solo tackles, two sacks for minus 20 yards, three stops for losses of 21 yards.
North Carolina State
Made a key play in Tech's win, with a touchdown-saving tackle on an interception return
Wolfpack safety Garland Heath picked off the ball at the NCS 30-yard line and appeared headed for the end zone, but Wrotto caught him at the Tech 27-yard line
Wrotto also took down defensive end Ray Brooks on Reggie Ball's 7-yard scoring toss to James Johnson with 2:24 left in the game
Head to Head Competition-DE#33-Ray Brooks-One assisted tackle.
Collected six knockdowns and cleared a rush lane used by Tashard Choice for a second quarter 3-yard touchdown run that ended an 83-yard, 20-play drive
Was penalized for holding on Choice's 4-yard run with 5:17 left in the third quarter
Head to Head Competition-DE#42-Brian Rackley-Two tackles (1 solo).
Registered eight knockdowns with two touchdown-resulting blocks as the offense piled up 462 yards
On the game's first play from scrimmage, Wrotto tackled John Talley at the Tech 22 after the cornerback intercepted a Reggie Ball pass and returned the ball 20 yards
Wrotto led the way on a first quarter 3-yard touchdown run by Tashard Choice and on Tech's next series, Wrotto leveled linebacker Michael Tauiliili to give Reggie Ball time to find Calvin Johnson with a 10-yard scoring strike
Head to Head Competition-DE#84-Patrick Bailey-Five solo tackles, one stop for a 2-yard loss.
Wrotto was called for two false starts, getting penalized on a second-&-goal play with 3:10 left in the third quarter and again on fourth-&-12 from the Tech 16 with 1:45 to play
He also saw defensive end Charles Johnson sack QB Reggie Ball for a 10-yard loss on third-&-2 at the Tech 16 late in the fourth quarter (right after Wrotto's second false start)
Head to Head Competition-DE#99-Charles Johnson-Four tackles (3 solos), a 10-yard sack, two stops for losses of 13 yards.
Played in twelve games, starting eleven times at strong-side defensive tackle
Recorded 13 tackles (7 solos) with 3.5 sacks for minus 25 yards, 4.5 stops for losses of 26 yards and a fumble recovery.
|2005 Game Analysis|
Registered an 11-yard sack vs. North Carolina and had two stops with a 1-yard sack vs. Virginia Tech
Credited with two tackles and a 5-yard sack vs. Wake Forest
Totaled four tackles with a 4-yard sack vs. Virginia
Assisted on a 5-yard sack in the Georgia clash.
Started nine of twelve games at strong-side defensive tackle
Credited with 18 tackles (4 solos) with an assisted sack and 3.5 stops for losses of 6 yards.
|2004 Game Analysis|
Posted three tackles and assisted on a stop for a loss vs. North Carolina
Was in on three tackles, an assisted sack and 1.5 stops behind the line of scrimmage vs. Maryland
Made four tackles, including one for a 3-yard loss vs. Virginia.
Started twelve of thirteen games at strong-side defensive tackle, earning Freshman All-American and Freshman All-Atlantic Coast Conference honors from The Sporting News
Finished with 14 tackles (3 solos), a 4-yard sack, four stops for losses of 8 yards and a fumble recovery.
|2003 Game Analysis|
Made a pair of tackles in his collegiate debut vs. Brigham Young
Had two more hits vs. Vanderbilt and registered a stop for a 2-yard loss vs. North Carolina State
Recovered a fumble and delivered a 4-yard sack in the Georgia clash
Added a stop behind the line of scrimmage and two tackles vs. Virginia.
No injuries reported.
Campus: 5.36 in the 40-yard dash
7.99 three-cone drill
4.9 20-yard shuttle
25-inch vertical jump.
Combine: 5.44 in the 40-yard dash
1.87 10-yard dash
3.11 20-yard dash
4.92 20-yard shuttle
8.34 three-cone drill
7'8" broad jump
Bench pressed 225 pounds 27 times.
First-team all-state selection in Class 5A by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Named to the AJC's Top 50 in Georgia
Rated the No. 46 player in Georgia by BorderWars
Ranked among the nation's top 50 defensive tackles by Rivals, which also tabbed him the No. 42 prospect in Georgia
Made 61 tackles, with five tackles for loss, 2.5 sacks and 16 quarterback hurries
Graded 92 percent with 46 knockdown blocks as an offensive lineman
Three-time letterman for coach Mark Crews at Brookwood High.
Full name is Mansfield Chell Wrotto (pronounced ROTT-o)
Parents are Mansfield and Jemmie Wrotto
Born Oct. 12, 1984
Majoring in Management.