Post-Draft Outlook:BEST PICK: Michael Oher wasn't the first offensive tackle off the board, but the Mississippi product should make an immediate impact at right tackle. There have been questions about his ability to pick up the offense, but Oher is a physical, determined lineman who will maul defenders. A closer look at the Ravens' picks: Round 1/23 -- Michael Oher, OT, 6-4, 309, Mississippi...The Ravens never expected Oher to fall into the second half of the first round. Team officials had rated him among the top 15 prospects in the draft. Thinking the Buffalo Bills might jump over them to get Oher, the Ravens traded a fifth-round pick to the New England Patriots to move from No. 26 to No. 23. Oher slipped because some questioned his intelligence, but the Ravens stressed that he is tough-minded. He will compete with Willie Anderson for the starting right tackle job. - by The Sports Xchange
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The subject of the New York Times bestseller by Michael Lewis, "The Blind Side: The Evolution of a Game," Oher has been the anchor of the Rebels' offensive line since being inserted into the starting lineup after the second game of his freshman season. He lined up at right offensive guard during his first season at Mississippi before shifting to the demanding left tackle position as a sophomore. He would end his career with the third-best active consecutive starts string (47) among Southeastern Conference players.
Received more national attention as a senior, as the Southeastern Conference's Jacobs Blocking Trophy recipient, the honor going to the league's top offensive linemen. Behind Oher's drive blocking, the Rebels improved from ranking 84th in the nation in rushing (131.5 yards per game) to 28th (second in the SEC) in 2008 (186.46 yards per game).
New coach Houston Nutt was very confident in putting young quarterback Javon Snead on the field, knowing that Oher would help protect his passer's blind side. Ole Miss let its left tackle carry them to a 2009 Cotton Bowl victory, as the 2008 squad went from being the 91st-ranked offense in the nation (345.25 yards per game) in 2007 to 29th overall and third in the SEC with an average of 407.62 yards per game in '08.
Oher was regarded as one of the finest offensive linemen in the nation at Briarcrest Christian School. The EA Sports and USA Today All-American choice was a member of the 2005 Tennessee Athletic Coaches Association All-Star team selected to compete against the Kentucky prep all-stars. He also competed in the U.S. Army All-America Bowl in San Antonio, Texas, and was named to Rivals.com's All-American Bowl All-Time Team.
Oher was picked by Tom Lemming/ESPN as the nation's top offensive tackle and named to the Super Prep All-America team (ranked No. 24 among offensive linemen by that service), which also had him on its Dixie Team. He was rated the fifth-best offensive lineman in the country and eighth-best overall prospect in the South by Scout.com, as well picking up first-team All-American recognition.
Oher was named the best player in the state of Tennessee by the Knoxville News-Sentinel and rated the second-best player in the South by the Mobile Register as a member of its Super Southeast 120 squad. He was named to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution Super Southern 100 and chosen Tennessee "Mr. Football" and Offensive Lineman of the Year.
As a senior, the first-team All-South selection by Fox Sports and the Orlando Sentinel was credited with 130 knockdown blocks, grading over 90% for blocking consistency, as he did not allow a quarterback sack. As a junior, he posted 83 knockdowns and graded 85%, helping lead Briarcrest to a 10-3 record and 2004 state championship.
In addition to earning two letters in football, Oher also lettered twice in both basketball and track. The basketball team went 27-6 in 2004, winning the district championship, as Oher averaged 22 points and 10 rebounds per game, earning All-State honors as well as making the Sun Coast All-Tourney team. In track, he was state runner-up in the discus.
Heavily recruited by many major colleges, Oher enrolled at Mississippi in 2005. He moved into the starting lineup in the second game of the season, starting the final 10 contests at right offensive guard. He produced 64 knockdowns, a remarkable total for a team that managed to average only 73.27 yards per game rushing, as the ground attack produced just six touchdowns for the season. For his performance, he was selected Freshman All-American first-team by Rivals.com and The Sporting News.
Oher was named All-Southeastern Conference second-team as a sophomore. He shifted to left offensive tackle in 2006, delivering 83 knockdowns while clearing the way for BenJarvus Green-Ellis to become just the third player in school history to rush for over 1,000 yards in a season.
Rated the third-best offensive tackle in college football by Lindy's magazine in 2007, Oher received All-American fourth-team accolades. He started all 12 games at left tackle, coming up with 99 knockdowns that included 12 touchdown-resulting blocks, including each of the team's eight rushing scores. Green-Ellis gained more than 70% of his 1,137 yards rushing (second-best season total by an Ole Miss player) running behind Oher.
Oher contemplated leaving school after his junior year. He originally applied for inclusion in the 2008 NFL Draft, but two days after announcing his intention to leave, the left tackle had a change of heart and withdrew his application. "While I felt good about being projected as a possible first-round pick and had everybody in my corner, it just kept coming back to me that I was leaving some unfinished business at Ole Miss," Oher said. "It's really about winning more games and going to a bowl game. I wanted to be a part of making that happen."
Oher worked hard in the offseason, greatly improving his overall strength and increased his bench press by over 70 pounds. He was a consensus All-American and unanimous All-Southeastern Conference first-team pick. The team captain won the Jacobs Blocking Trophy and was one of three finalists for the Outland Trophy, given to the nation's top blocker. He was also one of three finalists for the Conerly Trophy, given to the state of Mississippi's top collegiate player. He led the SEC blockers with an 87.77% grade for blocking consistency, en route to producing 99 knockdowns with a league-high seventeen touchdown-resulting blocks.
Positives: Prototypical left tackle build. Has good height and excellent athleticism. Unlike some left tackles, he has girth in his lower body. Uses his long arms to his greatest advantage, locking onto the jersey to nullify the pass rush of defensive ends. Gets into his pass set quickly and has very good lateral movement. Not fooled by dancing on the line. Shows the feet to pull inside, get to either shoulder to position block and nullify linebackers outside on screen passes. Sustains and mirrors as long as possible and will play through the whistle. Improved as a run blocker as a senior. Began to play with more aggression and physicality at the second level. An ascending talent who should only get better. Has gained experience as a celebrity due to the success of best-selling novel, "The Blind Side" and is potentially better prepared for the glamour of being a high pick.
Negatives: Only has three years experience at left tackle and is still learning the game. A better pass protector than power run blocker, as he does not consistently get great push off the edge. Needs more consistency in using his punch, which can be devastating against rush ends. Can be beaten in pass protection by quicker hands. Loses balance at times when lunging in pass pro. A bit tentative in the open field at times. Gets a bit lazy moving his feet when the play is run away from him and could stand to gain more stamina. Does not always adjust to outside blitzes, but handles inside pressure just fine. Has a very quiet, passive demeanor that some may characterize as lacking passion. Some concerns about how he'll acclimate to a new environment if he's drafted by a team geographically distant from his adopted family.
GENERAL REPORT: GRADE: 6.92 Body Structure: Oher has a tall frame with impressive lower-body thickness, long arms with large hands, broad shoulders, good chest muscle development, thick thighs and room on his frame to carry more weight.
Athletic Ability: Oher has a developing frame to carry more bulk, but he needs to improve his upper-body power, as he does not strike with a forceful punch. Because of upper-body strength issues, he tries to compensate with explosion off the snap, but he can get too reckless and when he overextends, his adequate change-of-direction agility makes him look sluggish trying to recover. He has the functional hip snap and enough flexibility to sink his pads and run fluidly off the line of scrimmage, along with the heavy feet to anchor vs. the bull rush. GRADE: 8.2
Football Sense: Oher has a learning disability. He lacks awareness picking up the blitz. He has good quickness, but needs to attack defenders away from the play more often, as he prefers to stay with his man rather than look for secondary targets to attack. He needs more than several reps to retain plays, but has to play with better instincts to pick up how the defense is attacking. GRADE: 5.3
Character: Oher is a true gentleman in the locker room. His childhood was well documented in the book, "The Blind Side: The Evolution of the Game." He was one of 13 children of a single mother with serious drug-related issues and lacked good education in his life, but has worked hard to remain the good character he has become. GRADE: 7.7
Competitiveness: Has a business-like approach to the game. Some would like to see much more aggression from a left tackle. For a player blessed with his strength, especially in his arms and hands, he should destroy defenders. He loves football, but more than a few scouts have concerns that he does not have the flashy intensity or burning desire in his play. GRADE: 6.2
Work Habits: Has long arms but needs a coach to teach proper technique to punch, grab and extend to neutralize and control defenders. He is very coachable and even though he plays with inconsistent aggression, he has good maturity from his life experiences and appreciates the opportunity afforded him at Mississippi. GRADE: 7.2
ATHLETIC REPORT: GRADE: 6.65 Initial Quickness: Oher has quick, nimble feet with good balance and body control playing in the trenches (struggles in space). He moves well going forward off the snap and uses his frame to pinch defenders back inside. When he stays low in his pads, he can fire low off the snap with good explosion to gain instant advantage. While not explosive, is rarely late off the line and is quick to make contact and impact the defender. With long arms and strong hands, he is very good at gaining advantage on a defender when he flashes suddenness coming off the ball. With a good get-off and proper hand technique, it should put him in the right place to make the block most of the time. GRADE: 6.7
Lateral Movement: Oher shows active, quick feet in the trenches (lacks great balance on the move, as he does not always adjust well downfield). He has enough agility to slide or pick up the blitz and defensive line stunts. When in-line blocking, he has shown better ability to sink his weight, which allows him to cave the defensive line with his leg drive and leverage. His improved concept for taking angles has seen him to a better job of locking on and winning battles in the short area. He also demonstrates good knee bend, which helps him when redirecting down the line. GRADE: 6.4
Balance/Stays On Feet: Oher is better served blocking along the line, as he doesn't have the burst or the balance to get out and make plays in space (gets narrow and crosses his feet). However, he is a good position blocker with nimble feet moving along the line. He demonstrates the functional hip snap needed to generate movement, but he needs to do a better job of keeping his feet and staying on the defender when working in the second level. Looks fluid enough working down the line, but will get sluggish running long distances and lose balance when he gets narrow-based. Can be inconsistent working in space. GRADE: 6.3
Explosion/Pop: Oher has a thick frame, but could still use more bulk in attempts to position and sustain (has the frame to carry more weight). With more bulk, along with more explosive quickness when he sets his base, he should separate from defenders easily but additional weight could result in a loss of quickness. He has the reach to keep defenders at a distance and, while not explosive rolling his hips, at least he is not a waist-bender. He sustains best at the line of scrimmage, where he does a good job running his feet, locking on and finishing (not as good playing in space). Might be a better fit at offensive guard early in his career -- works well in combination with other linemen, but despite his quick feet and athleticism, he tends to wait for edge rushers to come to him rather than stepping forward to attack. Despite good weight-room numbers, his strength doesn't always translate to the field, as he tries to finesse rather than maul his opponent. GRADE: 6.5
Run Blocking: As a drive blocker, he uses his body to root out the defender and when his pad level is down, he can move the pile and drive block with leverage (could be exceptional here with added weight). Oher has a good get-off coming out of his stance and his quick feet will put him in position to make the in-line block. He could be a better fit at guard because he shows good body control rolling his hips and drives with his legs to flash a line surge. He also has a guard-like approach when pulling in-line and knows how to attack the shoulders of a defender. Inconsistent, but when he rolls his hips, he has good success in gaining movement. GRADE: 8.0
Pass Blocking: Oher is a bit inconsistent, but when he keeps his head on a swivel when retreating in pass protection, he shows good urgency moving underneath to cut down backside pursuit. Has the lower-body strength and long arms to engulf smaller defenders and stymie the bull rush. Moves his feet well to shield and wall off the interior defender in pass protection (needs to be quicker moving out to challenge edge rushers). Can multiple defenders, but does get a bit upright in his stance, causing his base to narrow (this results in stronger defenders having success pushing him back into the pocket). Will sometimes try to use his body too much to lean into an opponent rather than extend his arms to lock out and control. When he anchors firmly, he can slide and find ways to adjust to the action in front of him. GRADE: 7.6
Pulling/Trapping: Not the ideal trap blocker, doesn't always fire off the line with intent and must do a better job of angling getting into the second level. He has adequate body control but needs to fix footwork to improve quickness and balance to hit a moving target. He is better flashing pop on contact when executing the short traps. GRADE: 6.4
Adjust on Linebacker Downfield: Oher has a tendency to put his head down before connecting when playing into the second level. He must do it with more consistency, but has the ability to take good angles and adjust to second level defenders. GRADE: 6.3
Use of Hands/Punch: During his first three seasons, Oher was more of a push-and-shove, grabby type and needed to refine his hand technique. Appeared to carry his hands low, letting defenders get a piece of his jersey and leaving his chest exposed. He worked hard to improve his hand placement, but when he gets outside his frame shooting his hands, it makes him look slow when trying to recoil and reset them. He is still learning how to use his hand punch, but he has the reach and large hands to pop, lock out and maintain separation. When he does generate force behind his punch, he can knock his opponent off balance. His developing strength can improve, but he showed in 2008 that he has the ability to use his hands to control and can create a good surge off the snap due to his balance. When he uses his hands, he has the ability to get under the defender's pads, jolt and dominate. GRADE: 6.9
Reactions/Awareness: Has had problems retaining plays and struggles to digest a complicated playbook, needing more than several reps to retain. He is not always alert to twists and games and needs to show better awareness reading the defense. Has problems with games up front and needs to do a better job of recognizing. GRADE: 5.4
Compares To: CHRIS WILLIAMS, Chicago -- Oher is a fine athlete yet to mature physically. With teams looking for more mobility at left tackle, he could eventually be a nice fit. As a rookie, he needs to add more bulk to his frame to handle more physical NFL linemen. He is still a neophyte at the tackle position, with just three years of experience and he might not have the natural intelligence to digest a complicated playbook. Athletically, he is a fine specimen, but it will take patient coaching to help him unearth his potential. OVERALL GRADE: 6.70
Oher holds the third-best string of consecutive starts (47; 37 at left tackle, 10 at right guard) among active Southeastern Conference players...Recorded 345 knockdown blocks during his Ole Miss career...In his last two seasons, the All-American registered AN 86.36% grade for blocking consistency, coming up with 198 knockdowns/key blocks, 29 touchdown-resulting blocks and 17 blocks down field...During the past two seasons, he allowed three quarterback pressures and 7.5 sacks on 637 pass plays.
Consensus All-American first-team and unanimous All-Southeastern Conference first-team choice...The team captain was the recipient of the Jacobs Blocking Trophy, given to the SEC's top blocker...One of three finalists for both the Outland Trophy, given to the nation's premier blocker and the Conerly Trophy, given to the state of Mississippi's top collegiate player...Semifinalist for the Rotary Lombardi Award...Named SEC Offensive Lineman of the Week vs. Louisiana-Monroe...The team captain started all 13 games at left offensive tackle, recording 99 knockdowns/key blocks for the second-straight season...Posted a league-high 17 touchdown-resulting blocks and delivered eight blocks downfield...Allowed just 2.5 quarterback sacks and one pressure on 340 pass plays...Behind Oher's blocking, the Rebels ranked 28th in the nation and second in the league in rushing (186.46 yards per game), 29th nationally and third in the SEC in total offense (407.62 ypg) and 28th in the major college ranks and second in the conference in scoring (32.08 ppg)...After allowing 28 quarterback sacks in 2007, the front wall was charged with just 18 sacks in 2008.
All-American fourth-team selection by Phil Steele's magazine...Consensus All-SEC first-team pick...Named to The Sporting News' midseason All-American first-team squad...Started all twelve games at left tackle, coming up with 99 knockdowns/key blocks, 12 touchdown-resulting blocks and nine blocks down field...Was penalized three times, as he compiled an 84.83% grade for blocking consistency...Allowed five quarterback sacks and one pressure on 297 pass plays...The team averaged 131.5 yards rushing, 213.75 yards passing, 345.25 yards in total offense and 20.08 points per game...Part of a front wall that allowed 28 quarterback sacks.
The All-SEC second-team selection moved to left offensive tackle as a sophomore, starting all twelve games...He registered 83 knockdowns/key blocks with eight touch-down resulting blocks while allowing 3.5 quarterback sacks...The Rebels averaged 125.33 yards rushing and 261.42 yards in total offense per game...His eight touchdown-resulting blocks are even more impressive, as Mississippi found the end zone only 20 times during the 2006 campaign.
Freshman All-American first-team selection by Rivals.com and The Sporting News, adding third-team accolades from College Football News....First-team Freshman All-SEC choice by the league's coaches and The Sporting News...Played in all eleven games, starting the final ten contests at right offensive guard...Delivered 64 knockdowns that included six touchdown-resulting blocks...While the ground attack struggled, averaging just 73.27 yards per game, Oher provided solid pass protection, as the Rebels averaged 208.45 passing yards.
No major injuries reported.
Campus: 5.22 in the 40-yard dash...1.8 10-yard dash...2.98 20-yard dash...4.68 20-yard shuttle...7.91 three-cone drill...28-inch vertical jump...9'0" broad jump...Bench pressed 225 pounds 24 times...330-pound power clean...33 1/4-inch arm length...10 1/4-inch hands.
Combine: 5.34 in the 40-yard dash...1.78 10-yard dash...3.03 20-yard dash...4.60 20-yard shuttle...7.81 three-cone drill...30 1/2-inch vertical jump...8'7" broad jump...Bench pressed 225 pounds 21 times...33 1/2-inch arm length...10 3/8-inch hands.
Attended Briarcrest Christian (Memphis, Tenn.) School, playing football as a junior and senior for head coach Hugh Freeze...EA Sports and USA Today All-American choice...Member of the 2005 Tennessee Athletic Coaches Association All-Star team selected to compete against the Kentucky prep all-stars...Also competed in the U.S. Army All-America Bowl in San Antonio, Texas and was named to Rivals.com's All-American Bowl All-Time Team...Picked by Tom Lemming/ESPN as the nation's top offensive tackle and named to the Super Prep All-American team (ranked No. 24 among offensive linemen by that recruiting publication), which also had him on its Dixie Team...Rated the fifth-best offensive lineman in the country and eighth-best overall prospect in the South by Scout.com, as well picking up first-team All-American recognition...Named the best player in the state of Tennessee by the Knoxville News-Sentinel and rated the second-best player in the South by the Mobile Register as a member of its Super Southeast 120 squad...Was named to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution Super Southern 100 and chosen Tennessee "Mr. Football" and Offensive Lineman of the Year...As a senior, the first-team All-South selection by Fox Sports and the Orlando Sentinel was credited with 130 knockdown blocks, grading over 90% for blocking consistency, as he did not allow any quarterback sacks...As a junior, he posted 83 knockdowns and graded 85%, helping lead Briarcrest to a 10-3 record and 2004 state championship....Earned two letters each in football, track and basketball...The basketball team went 27-6 in 2004, winning the district championship, as Oher averaged 22 points and 10 rebounds per game, earning All-State honors as well as making the Sun Coast All-Tourney team...In track, he was state runner-up in the discus.
Sociology major...Subject of the New York Times best seller by Michael Lewis, "The Blind Side: The Evolution of a Game"...Son of Denise Oher and guardian of Sean and Leigh Anne Tuohy...Born Michael Jerome Oher on 5/28/86...Resides in Memphis, Tennessee.
Draft Scout Player News
08/17/14 - T Michael Oher left the game with an arm injury against New Orleans, but the injury apparently was not serious.
04/03/14 - T Michael Oher was signed as an unrestricted free agent by the Titans from the Ravens March 15.
10/30/13 - -- OT Michael Oher didn't practice due to a sprained ankle, but it's not regarded as serious.
09/13/13 - RT Michael Oher reinforced the positive prognosis on his sprained right ankle, participating fully in practice again Friday. He is listed as probable.
Although Oher is limping slightly, he appears to be on track to play Sunday against the Cleveland Browns despite characterizing this as among the most serious sprains of his entire football career.
"It's definitely hurting me pretty bad," Oher said mid-week. "Hopefully, I can go on Sunday. This is one of the worst sprains I've had."
09/07/13 - OT Michael Oher, the starting right tackle, sprained his ankle. Oher indicated that he didn't believe it was serious.
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