We’re officially into the bowl stretch of the college football season, and NFL mock drafts are coming fast and furious. With that, we continue our way through the 2023 NFL Draft rankings, this time going over the interior offensive linemen. If you haven’t seen the previous position groups, check them out below:
1. Andrew Vorhees (USC)
The most intriguing part of Andrew Vorhees’ game is his versatility. He has experience at both tackle or guard, and he thrived at both spots for USC. He brings a ton of power regardless of where he plays, but especially at guard, he’s a true bull in terms of his ability to push defenders off the line of scrimmage.
If there’s anything that immediately pops up as a negative for Vorhees, it’s simply his consistency. He has a few reps that end up being uglier than his overall talent would suggest. Even still, his skills as a guard and the versatility to play pretty much anywhere on the offensive line lands him at the top of the list.
2. John Michael Schmitz (Minnesota)
There’s an argument to be made that John Michael Schmitz could have been drafted in the mid-to-late rounds of the 2022 NFL Draft had he declared, but the excitement around Daniel Faalele at tackle and other interior o-line prospects likely left the Gophers center overlooked and pushed him down draft boards.
The bet to return to school in 2022 paid off as he’s now the top center prospect in the class. Granted, he’s probably not the latest version of Tyler Linderbaum, who has immediately come into the NFL as a dominant anchor in the middle of the Ravens offensive line, but Schmitz still has the potential to be a quality starter in this league.
3. Cooper Beebe (Kansas State)
Gophers fans might remember Cooper’s older brother Colton Beebe from his time at Minnesota, but Cooper has found much more success as an offensive lineman at Kansas State. Like Vorhees, Beebe has experience at both tackle and guard, and he’s been one of the most reliable offensive linemen in all of college football throughout his career.
Beebe is a smooth lateral mover, allowing him to reset his blocking position with ease. In the running game, he is a bulldozer plowing through an opposing defensive front. Beebe is one of the more consistent guys in this class on the offensive line, and that could land him at a high draft pick.
4. O’Cyrus Torrence (Florida)
You won’t find a bigger presence on the offensive line than O’Cyrus Torrence. The Florida Gator and consensus All-American stands at 6’5 and approaches 350 pounds. Torrence also brings outstanding length to the table. Whether defenders want to or not, they’re going to run into Torrence when they try to penetrate the interior of his offensive line.
However, occasionally this size becomes a disadvantage for Torrence. He can get too high on his blocks, throwing off his leverage at times. Overall, he has all the looks of an NFL guard. If he can clean up a few of thing technical things, there’s a chance he becomes one of the best in the league.
5. Emil Ekiyor Jr. (Alabama)
Unlike the guys prior to him on this list, Emil Ekiyor Jr. is not the biggest guy on the offensive line. He is only 6’2, making him one of the shortest players on the o-line in this draft class. That said, Ekiyor is extremely dense, and at 320 pounds, that might be more important than height.
Defenders can’t go over Ekiyor; they have to go through him. His strength and terrific grip neutralize defenders’ attacking ability, and his technique is some of the purest in this class. He may have a lower potential than others because of his smaller stature, but he should still be a solid offensive lineman.
Josh Frey is a Class of 2020 graduate of The College of Idaho with a bachelor’s degree in Creative Writing. He also earned minors in History, Human Biology, and Journalism. When he’s not writing about the NFL, Josh enjoys marathon training, playing video games, or rooting for the Milwaukee Brewers and Bucks. For more of his opinions, check out his Twitter account: @Freyed_Chicken.