2017 NFL Draft
Prospect: Pat Elflein
Prospect: Pat Elflein
School: Ohio State
Ht: 6'-3" Wt: 300
Position #1: OL
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Elflein is one of the safer senior prospects in the country. He enters his fifth year moving to center after playing primarily guard the last two seasons. This kind of versatility is something that most teams crave among their offensive linemen. The transition shouldn't be difficult for him, and in fact, it may be his more natural fit at the next level.
What stands out about Elflein most is his technique. He plays with terrific hand-placement on his punch, usually getting his hands inside of his opponents. His footwork is usually spot on as well. Elflein routinely puts himself in proper position off the snap, in order to execute his assignment. One of the more difficult tasks among lineman is to get outside of and turn a player that is initially lined up outside of them. Elflein is a technician in this area and often completes the task. He also plays with a low center of gravity. He gets underneath his competition and lets his lower-body strength take it from there. Whether it is driving his opponents or pass-protecting, he drops his anchor and immediately absorbs their power and/or applies his own.
He also plays without outstanding awareness. Whether it is locating the blitz or passing off stunts, he is rarely caught off guard. He also times his chip blocks well, releasing and taking proper angles at the perfect moments. He doesn't have great athleticism in the open field, but he understands his limitations as well as any player in the country. He locates his man when pulling or advancing to the second level, stays under control, and more often than not, he makes solid contact with his target. This could be one of the reasons he fits better at center. He will be asked far less to pull or move up to the second level at that position. I am not saying he can't do it as a pro, but I wouldn't make a habit of getting him in the open field when the opposition is as athletic as NFL defenders.
His athleticism is not his only limitation. His arm length is average. Rarely did I see him struggle against opposition but in the 2014 semifinal game against Alabama, players like Jarran Reed, A'Shawn Robinson, and fellow senior, Jonathan Allen tested him with their combination of length and power. When he faces opponents that have long arms, and they get their hands on him first, he can be less effective. Still, he is resourceful and smart, as well as a tireless worker. He may not be the pick that fans fall in love with early in a draft, but if he transitions to center as easily as expected, he will make some team very happy in an early round next April.
Compares to (Current NFL Player): Josh Sitton (Packers), Eric Wood (Bills)
- Plays with outstanding technique
- Versatile enough to play center or either guard position
- Terrific Awareness on the field
- Great football character and IQ
- Powerful player
- Not an elite athlete for the position
- Arm length is average at best
- Not much more room for growth (What you see is what you get)
1)   The Finisher: Pat Elflein Embodies Family Mindset With Intensity on Field   - Eleven Warriors |
2)   Meet the Real Ultimate Warrior, Ohio State's Pat Elflein Ever   - SB Nation |
Why Pat Elflein passed up on the NFL for one more season at Ohio State   - Cleveland.com |
4)   Pat Elflein Twitter|