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NFL Draft

2021 NFL Draft Scouting Report: IOL Josh Myers

  • The Draft Network
  • December 23, 2020
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PROSPECT SUMMARY

Josh Myers projects as a starting center at the NFL level—but his fit is going to be dependant on the key responsibilities his offense requires of him to execute. Myers is a big-bodied center with a pleasant level of lateral mobility to play along the line of scrimmage, but he lacks the dynamic short-area quickness to consistently win isolated reps climbing to the second level or pulling and working out in front of plays that stretch to the boundary. Myers, with his boxy frame, is best suited to work in the phone booth. This isn’t to say he can’t work wide zone concepts or climb off of double teams to pick off linebackers, but he’s not an overly dynamic player in space at this point and his lack of balance and control on the B-level of the defense will allow crafty defenders to take advantage and test him to shoot gaps and attack the front. Myers is predominantly a right-handed shotgun snapper, but he has been given reps at OSU that allow him to snap to a quarterback under center and he’s handled those situations well in short yardage. Myers’ functional athleticism may cap his ceiling as a player, but he’s got the build and strength in his game to serve as an average starter at the pro level. If he’s able to uncover some additional quickness, he could become a more scheme-diverse target for the 2021 NFL Draft and his ceiling could grow; though that would likely require some reworking of his body composition. 

Ideal Role: NFL starting center.

Scheme Fit: Inside zone heavy rushing offense; passing offense with high-volume shotgun formations.

FILM EVALUATION

Written by Kyle Crabbs

Games watched: Penn State (2019), Michigan (2019), Clemson (2019), Nebraska (2020), Penn State (2020), Northwestern (2020), Clemson (2020) 

Best Game Studied: Michigan (2019)

Worst Game Studied: Penn State (2020)

Competitive Toughness: You can appreciate his sense of urgency on inside zone to string out and look to turn defenders as they make themselves available to him. Myers is a vacuum if he gets his hands established on smaller defenders and he’ll overwhelm LBs who step into gaps and try to plug up the alley. His functional strength is suitable for the pro game against even the most stout of defensive tackles; although ergonomics and posture may allow dynamic big men to pull him off his set.  

Balance: Myers’ control in space and on the second level is only modest. His lack of body control and ability to slow his momentum are problematic and allow defenders to dip under his climb or subsequently push/pull their way off the block. On a number of these instances, Myers has ended the play on the ground. He’ll have to walk the line between proper urgency to hit his landmarks and not overextending himself to play out of control. 

Anchor Ability: In raw power situations, Myers is effective to lock horns and absorb power rushes. I rarely saw him punched back onto his heels and he’ll do well to step and squeeze on slide protections to ensure he’s locked in and not going to let a player leverage low and push through a crease. If you test him in one-on-ones, you’re playing into his best qualities. 

Lateral Mobility: Myers is a bit of an oddity here. He’s plenty effective on inside and wide zone to string along the front as a member of bulls on parade. But when you ask Myers one-on-one to mirror or react late to flashing color, his feet don’t have the same appeal and he’ll let defenders shoot across his face and reach the mesh point or the quarterback. He's smooth but not overly dynamic when playing laterally along the LOS. 

Power at P.O.A.: He’s more of a stalemate blocker in one-on-ones. That said, Myers has created some tremendous movement on chips and double teams, creating a lot of force in short spaces to help create creases for his ball carrier to press into. His complementary punch as the “help” on such double team reps will create the initial push to start rolling into a climb to the B-level. 

Hand Technique: Reach, extension, and stickiness can be hit or miss here. Myers can lock onto a block in close quarters and have success, but if he’s looking to really yank or twist shoulders to create space, he’s not super consistent here. His hands do well to stay inside but he can’t work across to finish these blocks in many cases, which will prompt his back to cut back off his backside hip. 

Football IQ: Myers does well to dial up his assignments in run fits and does well to adjust his trajectory on the move. In pass protection, he can be a touch late at times to slide and work in front of delayed rushers—and his lack of twitch in such instances has hung him out to dry. I only saw a handful of disappointing snaps on his tape—he’s fine-tuned to accurately shoot back shotgun snaps. 

Versatility: While Myers could hypothetically play guard, I don’t think I’d endorse him anywhere other than center unless you’re in an absolute pinch and need to shuffle the line. Myers would struggle greatly with 3T quickness out of the blocks, and as a result, leaving him at center matches him best with the athletes he can win against. He’s got the power and strength to play isolated in gap/power concepts, but combos with his guards on IZ are where he shines. 

Pass Sets: Has been fortunate enough to play between really solid guards throughout the course of his collegiate career and he’s not often isolated in five-man protections. OSU has used plenty of slide protection to keep him in close quarters, where he’s savvy and does well to identify extra work if he’s unattended. He handles power rushes from nose tackles well, which plays into his strengths as a prospect as compared to trying to block back on 1T gap shooters. 

Flexibility: He’s high-hipped and does not illustrate a great deal of hinge through the knees or hips. As a result, Myers is often punching down on defenders and he’ll concede some valuable leverage in both head-to-head collisions and when trying to work across face and secure a reach. There’s some tightness to his pulls, as he looks to peel around the set (often in pass protection)—his range as a puller will be limited. 

Prospect Comparison: Tyler Biadasz (2020 NFL Draft, Dallas Cowboys)

SCOUT GRADES

TDN Consensus: 78.13/100

Joe Marino: 78.50/100

Kyle Crabbs: 79.50/100

Jordan Reid: 77.50/100

Drae Harris: 77.00/100

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