Bryant McKinnie

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Offensive Line
Bryant McKinnie
September 23, 1979

Strengths: Bryant McKinnie’s big, strong, athletic and very, very smart. Last year was just his fifth in organized football, yet he earned more than a few favorable comparisons to perennial All-Pro Jonathan Ogden.

McKinnie has tremendous speed for a man his size (5.1/40) and is quite agile, with quick lateral movements and a tremendous first step. With his long arms, he’s become adept at keeping pass rushers at bay. Last year, he didn’t allow a single sack.

A nice guy with a commendable work ethic, he spent hours last year breaking down film with Miami coaches, trying to learn his craft and find ways to improve upon it. It apparently helped, as coaches noticed progression from week-to-week during the 2000 season and again during recent spring workouts.

Areas of concern: He’s still very, very raw. Butch Davis, his former coach, called him a "puppy." And while pass blocking has proven almost innate to the former defensive end, run blocking remains a concern. He’s not bad, but not polished, either. McKinnie has a tendency to raise up and lose the leverage needed to drive an opponent.

And while we love our tackles big, McKinnie’s not the most flexible guy and also isn’t the strongest. He can get pushed around in run blocking, where lower body strength and push are so critical. But those are two areas easily correctable.

Is he sponge-worthy?: Oh yeah. While it’s hard to see Houston using their first-ever pick on a lineman (lineman, god bless ’em, don’t have a very high AIS factor), McKinnie may prove too good to pass up.

He likely would have gone top 10 this year had he come out early, and barring a major collapse, is likely to go top 5 next year. The only question surrounding McKinnie is whether he can play left tackle in the NFL, but most think he’ll be able to make it.

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