2023 NFL Draft Scouting Report


Peter Skoronski

September 26, 2022 1:00 PM EST


Peter Skoronski Scouting Report picture

School: Northwestern

Height: 6'4"

Weight: 315

Eligibility: JR

Uniform: #77

Position: OT


Evaluated by: Austin Smith
Smith.Austinj14@gmail.com
Twitter: NFLDraftAustin
September 26, 2022

Prospect Overview


2020: 9 GP
2021: 12 GP

A four-star recruit out of Illinois, Skoronski had his choice of a handful of Big Ten schools, as well as several high-end scholastic universities like Duke and Stanford. Ultimately, he went with the best of both worlds by choosing Northwestern.


Peter Skoronski Scouting Report image 1

As one of Northwestern’s highest-rated signees of all time, Skoronski started immediately for the Wildcats. While some ranked him as an interior offensive line coming out of high school, he was slotted in at left tackle following Rashawn Slater’s decision to opt out of the 2020 shortened season.

Since then, he’s started every game on the blindside for Northwestern, garnering all-conference honors each of his first two years. As a freshman, he was part of an offensive line that gave up just 1.29 sacks a game (third best in Big Ten), and the following year, they paved the way for a 1,000-yard rusher.

A preseason All-American candidate, Skoronski is the grandson of former five-time NFL Champion Bob Skoronski. He’s majoring in economics at Northwestern.

Peter Skoronski Scouting Report image 2

Positives

Much like Rashawn Slater was coming out of Northwestern, Skoronski is a very technical player. His angles off the snap are spot-on, and he has a keen understanding of body positioning as it relates to the design of the run.

Whether blocking for the run or the pass, Skoronski plays with good pad level and posture, which allows him to play with good balance in most situations. Perhaps his top quality is how active his feet and hands are pre and post-engagement.

Skoronski fires his hands inside, and if they don’t hit their mark, he reworks them until he’s inside and locked on. His footwork is also impeccable from the first step off the snap until he locks on and attempts to mirror or drive his defender.

In fact, his feet are a big reason he routinely executes reach blocks where he turns and seals defenders, as well as interior pull blocks where he walls off the opponent to keep the designed run lane clear.

Once he gets his hands locked on, Skoronski does his best to pull the defender tight and roll his hips to move them backward. While his overall strength is just above average, his best power comes when he rolls those hips, thanks to a thick lower half and strong core.

That is something that shows up in multiple areas. Bull rushes don’t yield much success against him as his core and lower half absorb and put an end to the defender’s momentum.

Still, Stroud is an intelligent player, and it's evident throughout his game. He's very active in the pre-snap communication and alters his cadences in various ways. Not only does Stroud sell his run fakes well, but he understands when it's appropriate to abandon them to get the ball out on time.

He also takes advantage of players who get off balance with various techniques, including a double chop that can leave a defender falling flat on their face. Also, while his height may be just above average, his arm length appears more than adequate for a tackle.

Areas for Improvement

While Skoronski is typically quite sound with his technique, there are a few areas he can clean up. One, in particular, is the result of what appears to be just marginal lateral agility. When Skoronski is facing good speed, he will get a little clunky with his initial kick-slide that looks more like hops than sliding.

His arms will also flail to help create more lateral momentum, which leads to struggles when it’s time to land a punch inside. The ideal technique would be keeping his elbows glued to his ribs, but the question is whether his kick slide is quick enough without the help.

Another area his lateral ability is an obvious problem is working to the second level or in the open field. While he is surprisingly adept when pulling, these other areas reveal a much different player.

Whether it’s cutting off or getting a hold of linebackers following a combo block, or identifying the right defender and getting a solid shot on screens or perimeter runs, his success rate is relatively low.

Skoronski can also stand to add a little strength, particularly in his upper body. His hands could use a little more pop, and while he locks on fine at the college level, the added weight will help that trend continue as a professional.

He rarely shows a nasty streak, though there was a bit more fire in his play when they took on Rutgers in 2021. Still, that desire to block to the echo of the whistle or put a man on his back doesn’t show up much.

His awareness against the blitz or stunts can sometimes be a bit slow as well. Skoronski must do a better job playing with his eyes in this regard, and it can also show up when he’s in the open field.


Peter Skoronski Scouting Report image 3

Draft Stock

Any time an offensive lineman shows a high level of technical ability, they will draw a decent amount of interest. Perhaps his most convincing tape was against Michigan (2021), where he put up an excellent performance against a pair of first-round talents in Aidan Hutchinson and David Ojabo.

It wasn’t perfect, but it was a solid showing for a true sophomore. Skoronski looked sharp to open 2022 against Nebraska, and it appears his arrow is continuing to trend up, which has many predicting he will be one of the first offensive linemen drafted in 2023, assuming he declares.

Skoronski is an intelligent guy on and off the field, and his academic goals played a vital role in his choosing Northwestern. While he’s only played left tackle in college, the potential could also be there to kick inside, and I wouldn’t rule out positional flexibility being something he shows off in his pre-draft workouts.

The big question will be how much can his technical ability overshadow average physical traits. He may never have the strength of a mauler in the trenches, but can the agility tick up a notch? The improvements we see in 2022 will be a telling factor, as will his athletic testing.

He enters the year (2022) as a strong day-one candidate, but his stock could slip if Skoronski can’t check some of those boxes.


Peter Skoronski Scouting Report image 4

Player Comparison

I’m going to stick with my original assessment, which was how much he has in common with Jake Matthews when he was coming out of Texas A&M. Matthews had some physical limitations as well, and even some questions about whether his arm length could handle being an NFL tackle.

Still, Matthews grew up with an NFL pedigree and was a technically sound blocker that ultimately proved worthy of a top-ten selection in 2014. While I wouldn’t say he’s been a spectacular player (just one Pro Bowl), it’s hard to argue with a career that has featured just one missed start (the second game of his rookie season) in nine seasons of playing left tackle in the NFL.

Atlanta certainly doesn’t regret taking him with the sixth-overall pick, as he signed a three-year extension this past offseason. That’s what Skornoski can be, and if the lateral agility takes a step forward in his junior year, I’d say he has the potential to surpass it.

Of course, Rashawn Slater’s name will also come up, but Slater was a much smoother athlete on tape. While it’s not out of the question for a third-year player to continue to develop as an athlete, Slater’s physical profile was truly impressive heading into the NFL.

Games Evaluated

  • vs. Michigan State (9-3-21)
  • vs Rutgers (10-16-21)
  • at Michigan (10-23-21)
  • at Wisconsin (11-13-21)
  • vs. Nebraska (8-27-22)

Notes from Film

  • Good height and arm length with a thick frame and heavy anchor.
  • Gets really good movement when he rolls his hips forward.
  • Nice pop in his hands that shows up in the initial strike and when he tries to rework his hands. He can get stronger in general, but his strength isn’t an issue at this level.
  • Shows a good understanding of how important good angles and body positioning are off the snap.
  • Overall patient approach in pass protection but when the edge rusher changes up his pace, Skoronski can get a little lungy.
  • Still, he has a good idea of how to take advantage of defenders who get off balance. Will chop a defender’s arms down when they duck their head and lunge. This often results in defender face planting into the turf.
  • Kick slide can get turn into hopping when he knows he has speed opposite of him. Lateral quickness is good not great.
  • Not as effective or technically sound in the open field
  • Hands are typically spot on, and when he misses, there is no doubt that he’s going to rework them in an effort to get them inside. Latches well when he gets inside his man’s chest and that’s when the core and lower-body strength show up.
  • One area he can improve on is keeping his arms glued to his frame in pass protection. They tend to flail a bit in order to increase the lateral movement.
  • While he may have some issues blocking at the second-level in the open field, he looks more comfortable pulling.
  • Love how active his feet are after contact. Guy is always working to move his man as a run blocker. In pass protection, they stay active to continue to mirror once his hands are in position.
  • Posture, once he’s locked on, is outstanding. He bows his back, keeps his weight under him and rolls hips forward to create movement. While it’s fun to watch big linemen get their weight out in front and drive a guy like a road grader, good defenders will end up using that forward momentum against them. Skoronski doesn’t let that weight get out front and it allows him to mirror and neutralize his opponent without issue. This is a big reason why he is rarely on the ground when the play ends.
  • Power is good, but nothing spectacular, but his game is based on technical play and not physical dominance.
  • I like his ability to work combo blocks with his partner. Understands whether teammate needs help slowing momentum or has him under control and a solid shot could help teammate bury him. Works up to second level with good angles and timing on combo blocks, but the struggles changing direction laterally still show up when it’s time to make the block.
  • Can be a little late reacting to blitzes and stunts that require him to pass a man off and work to the next
  • Consistently plays with good pad level.
  • Showed a bit of a nasty streak against Rutgers. Hadn’t shown much of an attitude or a heavy desire to finish his blocks prior to that but he did in that contest.
  • He had a good performance against Aidan Hutchinson and David Ojabo of Michigan. Ojabo got a nice push on one bull rush and both guys got a half step on the edge once or twice before his core strength kicked in to keep them from turning the corner on him. His hands got in a little bit of a vulnerable spot on those plays, but never got to the point where a flag was warranted. One thing that did not work against him were countermoves inside. He never over set, and when they changed direction on him he was in perfect position.


Scouting Video Courtesy of GSLING




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