Back on the offense side of the bracket, we have two versatile lineman squaring off. Both of these prospects fill a need along the colts weakest link, the offensive line. Who will advance on to the second round in this battle between Jones and Frederick?
Barrett Jones was one of the main reasons the Alabama Crimson Tide won the national championship this year. His smarts and reads along the line propelled them to a 12-1 season. Jones stands at 6'5 and weighs 302 pounds, great size for a center or guard on the next level. He is an effective blocker down field with great open field speed. Barrett uses great blocking technique, which allows him to stay control and not overextending on defensive lineman. Jones plays with a wide base, which helps him create space along the line.
Jones handled the offensive line calls for Alabama due to him playing center. Centers have to frequently point out linebackers and possible blitzes, like what Jones did for the Crimson Tide. He has a very high football IQ, very reliable to not make many mistakes. Jones has played all along the offensive line (center, right guard, and left tackle). Barrett is even a smart kid off the field. He carried a 4.0 GPA at Alabama and finished his masters degree in a little over four semesters. Jones' toughness is unquestioned as he played on a torn ligament in his foot against Georgia and Notre Dame.
During pass blocking, Jones is effective when absorbing contact with arms extended onto the defender. Jones is patient in pass blocking, he will not lunge into blocks and keeps his balance as well. Barrett is a great run blocker too. He is a great puller, has great vision to locate incoming defenders. Jones takes great angles to set up blocks on the second level for the ball carrier to run through. He is a great combo blocker, sheds off of his initial block and leads down the field.
Barrett sustains blocks well on both passing and running plays. His hand technique is one of the best in the draft, as it does not switch up at all. On film, Jones is consistently one that shows up on film. Jones does his best work when nobody is on him. He shows great footwork and it pops up on tape. He should be available in round two. His stock though is anywhere from the end of round one to the third round.
The flaws in Jones' game can be noticed. He lacks the killer instinct of being a mauling run blocker on the next level. He took too long on some snaps to make his reads, which cost the offense at times. Against bigger defensive tackles, he tends to struggle with anchoring (just physically outmatched at times). Jones is inconsistent in his lateral movement on run blocking. Barrett does not bend his knees or show that much flexibility in hips either.
As usual, here are some scouting videos on Jones by Mario Clavel and JPDraftJedi. A note on these videos real quick, I had to use highlights of Chance Warmack in here, as there is more film of him on YouTube. Obviously though, Jones is in on every play as well.
Alabama vs. Tennessee: Jones is #75 in white, lined up at center.
Alabama vs. LSU: Jones is #75 in red, lined up at center.
Jones seems like a great fit with the Colts if he is taken at 24, or if they trade back and get him. He would be an upgrade over Samson Satele, but I like the potential of A.Q. Shipley at center though. The good thing is, Jones is versatile and could play guard as well. Like the Jeff Saturday-Peyton Manning combo, the Jones-Luck combo could be a great one for years to come.
Travis Frederick is a weight room beast, as he holds many records at Wisconsin. Also, he started all four years at Wisconsin. He weighs in at 6'4 and 340 pounds. Frederick is quick off the snap after making his reads. Travis has great power in 1-on-1 blocking situations. Frederick is not afraid to get a little dirty and play past the whistle, he craves combat. Travis was Academic All-Big 10 as well.
Frederick's pass blocking skills are great for a center. He is great at anchoring against bigger defensive lineman. He uses his stout arms to explode a powerful punch into the defender to make them hesitate a little bit. In run blocking, Frederick is the best center at it in the draft. He does very well at tandem blocking and has a great overall football IQ. Travis has the pure strength to bully defenders back into the second level. Another good thing about Frederick in run blocking is that he has a mean streak that helps him road grade defenders back to open holes up.
His overall technique is off the charts. Frederick sinks his hips in run blocking that helps him grade out as one of the better run blockers in the entire draft. Travis keeps his hands inside when blocking. Rarely do you see him use bad technique. As mentioned, Frederick's anchoring is great as well. His stocky frame of 340 pounds helps him hold his ground against space-eating nose tackles.
The flaws in Frederick's game can be noticed, quickly. He lacks speed in the open field to block down field. Travis is also slow-footed after hitting the defensive lineman with the opening power punch. He struggles against quick speed rushers and has poor recovery skills on blocks. Frederick will lunge out to defenders to retain his balance. He is only a one-block player, fits a man-blocking scheme more. Travis also struggles to locate moving targets along the line. Frederick also will struggle to keep his feet moving and has tends to have leverage issues.
Wisconsin has become offensive lineman-U, as they always bring out top lineman in either the first or second round almost every year. Frederick seems like another one of those Badgers that will be drafted high in this year's draft. His stock is anywhere from late in the first round to the third round. A little draft nugget about Frederick is from Tony Pauline of Draftinsider.net. According to Pauline, he was told that Frederick could be a surprise pick a the end of round one by either the Colts or Falcons on Twitter a few days ago.
Here are some scouting videos of Frederick by Mario Clavel and JPDraftJedi.
Wisconsin vs. Stanford: Frederick is #72 in white, lined up at center.
Wisconsin vs. Michigan State: Frederick is #72 in red, lined up at center.
Frederick looks like he could be a fit for the Colts new man-blocking system for next season. He is a mauling run blocker, but do not trust him on a team that throws 40 plus times a game. Pep Hamilton mentioned he wants to implement the running game more into the offense and Frederick could be a start to that. Travis could blow up the combine, but it seems like he would be available in round two. The Colts could move back and collect a few picks to along the way to get him. Could Luck and Frederick be the new Manning-Saturday, or is Jones more likely for that?
After the analysis of Jones and Frederick, who should get your vote to advance on? Which of these centers will move on to the second round of the tournament? Vote on the poll below and let your voice be heard!