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Scouting Report - OG Mike Iupati - Idaho - Hindu Theory - Jahri Evans - Saints
Photo - Guard Mike Iupati - Idaho
Mike Iupati is our highest rated guard prospect and a rare #1 pick at the position. He has improved our the critical postseason from the Senior Bowl through the NFL Combine. He may be selected as early as the 15th overall selection by the Giants with the Steelers, Bengals and Patriots all interested in him in the first round. He is our highest rated guard prospect since Steve Hutchinson was selected in the first round by the Seahawks in the NFL Draft 2001.
Mike Iupati #77 - 6’5” 330 lbs. - Idaho - Sp. 5.2 - Rating 90
Physical aggressive senior guard has been a three-year starter earning WAC first team honors over his late career. Mike is an imposing physical blocker who started at guard and graded out exceptionally high over his late college stay that should earn him a first round selection in April. He is an aggressive blocker who gets the most out of his athleticism, relying on sound technique, very good functional strength and the toughness the position demands. He is a powerfully built lineman that has good agility and footwork to carry all the assignments along the line. He plays with sound leverage, strong leg drive with a forceful hand punch to grade out high consistently. He has long arms that indicate he could also line up at tackle, though his initial playing time should be inside and probably as a starting rookie. He displays the toughness and aggressiveness to win vs NFL caliber defenders and uses his wrestling experience to gain quick leverage in matchups. He is a player who never lets down, going hard from snap to whistle the entire game. He has a very strong leg drive and is able create consistently good movement blocking inline. He can direct, wall off and sustain well inline and is also effective on short pulls. He has the look of a very likely rookie starting guard in the right setting. He is cut in the mold of a tough aggressive NFL guard like Jahri Evans with the nasty demeanor that scouts seek in a starting lineman and the footwork and functional strength to carry out all the assignments. He comes out of his stance quickly with good positioning and a fast hand punch that gains early control and jars an opponent. He is a physical blocker who locks on with strong hands and moves his feet to steer a defender with the ability to finish with power. He is effective when pulling and is able to adjust and get adequate fits when blocking on the 2nd level despite average footspeed. As a pass blocker, he can slide laterally, mirror and adjust to secondary rush moves, though he needs to get his hands on a defender early to gain a quick advantage. He anchors well vs the bull rush with the fine functional strength and agility to contain defenders consistently and sustains his blocks well. He works hard to finish and will bury defenders often, showing the nasty demeanor of that of top NFL linemen. At times, he can play high that negates his power and also gets out of position by being overly aggressive. He needs to play technically sound and within himself to be highly effective. As a drive blocker, he is a tough physical competitor that gets into his blocks quickly with nice movement, relying on his strong hands to control a defender and finish with a powerful leg drive to get movement. He is a competitive lineman who is usually a sound technician with the physical and mental ability to play in the NFL. He has terrific functional strength to handle the big NFL 320 lb.+ tackles. He gets consistent movement with the ability to flip his hips and seal with good lower body power to finish each block. After extensive experience at a few positions, he shows the ability to pick up stunts and blitzes, though he needs further work on his assignments. He is less effective in space where his marginal foot speed can break down. At the NFL Combine, he came in at 6’5” and 331 lbs. with 34.3/4” arm length. He ran a 5.31 time with 27 reps and did a 27.5” VL and a 7’8” BJ. At the Senior Bowl, he graded out well vs top competition, though raw in some techniques. Physical durable blue-collar lineman with fine AA, good technique and the intangibles to make it all work. Good first round pick with the skill set and intangibles to start as a rookie. Blue-chip prospect with the skills to be a long time starter with development at possibly both guard and tackle. Definite top 25 value and future Pro Bowl guard.
Draft Projection: 1st Round