NAME: Max Scharping
SCHOOL: Northern Illinois
POSITION: Offensive Tackle
CLASS: RS Senior
JERSEY: No. 73
RECRUITMENT RATING: 2-star
WT: 320 lbs
Run Blocking – Does well to establish his frame to seal rushing lanes. Doesn’t move bodies as well as expected for his size at the line of scrimmage. When space is created, it’s often because Scharping has an angle on his man that he effectively takes advantage of. Doesn’t offer the lateral mobility to consistently reach/hook block.
Pass Blocking – Process isn’t as good as results. Doesn’t have the foot speed to consistently reach his set points. Opens his hips too soon and exposes the b-gap. Weight is often too far back on his heels, making him susceptible to the bull rush. Can set a quick, stout anchor in quick game. Effectively uses his length to widen rush angles if he’s square.
Blocking in Space – Has success as a vertical blocker climbing to the second level. Stays under control and balanced in space. Reach extends his range despite modest athletic ability to quickly reach his landmarks. Mostly takes sound angles but the realistic landmarks he can get to are limited.
Power – Has enough play strength but he isn’t a mauler. Needs to become more deliberate to leverage his hips to reduce his pad level and maximize his play strength. Feet will occasionally lag behind his upper body. Body needs to sync up more consistently to have more success.
IQ – Executes with an apparent understanding of his role within the play design. Strong processor that diagnoses stunts and pressure packages effectively. Technical issues are concerning given his experience as a four-year starter. Is always alert and looks for work.
Feet – Feet are clunky and slow. Kick slide isn’t smooth and looks choppy – picks em’ up and puts em’ down. Redirecting and sliding back inside is a challenge. Slow feet limit his ability to work laterally.
Hands – Flashes aggressive moments with his hands marred with late punches that expose his chest. For the most part he does well to keep pass rusher and the end of his reach when they commit to the outside rush track. Works to establish his hand fits and showcases good grip strength once locked in.
Balance – Issues with body control stem from inconsistencies with leverage, weight distribution and a base that narrows. Frequently pops straight up out of his stance and gets his weight on his heels. His foundation is inconsistent and presents challenges when redirecting his weight.
Versatility – Has starting experience at both right and left tackle. His best NFL fit may come inside at guard. Has issues that will limit him in either a man or zone blocking run scheme.
BEST TRAIT – Experience
WORST TRAIT – Feet
RED FLAGS – None
Max Scharping is a four-year starter that enters the NFL with experience at both left and right tackle although his best NFL course could be playing inside at guard. His lack of foot quickness and lateral mobility limit his upside in a zone blocking scheme while he isn’t a consistent drive blocker to project him favorably to man schemes. By year three, Scharping has the upside to provide depth if he can prove his versatility at the next level. He has the potential to fill a starting role in time should he reach every bit of his full potential.
PROS: NFL-caliber size and athleticism with decent length — enough to play on the boundary. Wash-away power on down blocks who does well to explode into contact as a run blocker. Effective working up into second level with good off-ball explosiveness again, taking good leverage angles to execute outside run concepts.
As a pass-blocker, doesn’t panic and knows how to win late in reps by taking rusher where he wants to go. Uses frame well to screen off rushers on the outside lane, landing hand underneath shoulder pad to run player around the arc. Can handle inside moves with good post foot discipline. Has some anchoring power to deal with the bull rush; a wide base helps him deal with power from unpredictable angles.
CONS: Lacks notable athletic traits that likely deep-sixes his future at NFL tackle and may still present problems at guard. Does not have good foot quickness to deal with agile rushers or recover when he’s moved out of position. Lacks ideal power to stonewall rushers in the trenches. Poor lower half bend is incredibly limiting terms of ideal kick-slide footwork and full-body power generation. Unable to gain depth in his kick-slide at the snap and is immediately threatened with explosiveness off the edge. Will false step into his pass sets which exacerbates his depth issues.
Footwork problems flare up throughout kick-slide. Opens the door quickly when he feels threatened on the outside arc, leaving himself susceptible to inside counters and power through. Will cross over out of his set when he knows the outside rush is coming, which limits the efficacy of his wide base and power. Hand placement generally fails to impress; lacks sustain grip strength as both a run blocker and pass protector. Loses to length and is generally late with his punch, allowing rushers to win his chest. More likely to be successful at guard than at tackle given footwork concerns, though they need to be addressed for Scharping to have any NFL success.
– Benjamin Solak