Commentary

2008 midround tackles hoping to follow Tauscher's example

Scouts Inc.'s Steve Muench takes a look at four midround offensive tackle prospects looking to find the right fit in the NFL.

Originally Published: April 1, 2008
By Steve Muench | Scouts Inc.
There's an excellent chance that five offensive tackles will come off the board in the first round this year, and Virginia's Branden Albert is a first-round guard prospect who could also play tackle in the NFL. It's easy to see why the top of the offensive tackle class is receiving so much attention this year. However, the supply still isn't expected to satisfy the heavy demand. Teams that aren't lucky enough to land one of the top five or have more pressing needs to address early on will be looking to find players in the middle and late rounds who can contribute in their scheme. Players like Green Bay's Mark Tauscher.

[+] EnlargeMark Tauscher
Todd Rosenberg-US PRESSWIRESeventh-rounder Mark Tauscher has used solid technique to become a quality NFL starter.
Tauscher walked on at Wisconsin and didn't become a full-time starter until his senior season. He simply didn't have the résumé of better-known 2000 prospects like collegiate teammate Chris McIntosh or Hawaii's Adrian Klemm. Why, it's still clear today that he doesn't have prototypical power for a right tackle and lacks elite initial quickness. But back then, McIntosh went in the first round, Klemm went in the second and Tauscher went in the seventh round. Tauscher has had a more successful career than the other two, however.

So what did scouts miss that year? Tauscher is a hard worker who made steady progress at the collegiate level, and that progression continued in the NFL. He was simply a late-bloomer who developed into a quality starter by learning to mask his weaknesses with technique and tenacity. Of course, playing in front of Brett Favre for the bulk of his career also helped, because Favre's quick feet and quick release made it tougher for edge rushers to close in on him.
Steve Muench played four years of Division I-AA football before joining Scouts Inc. in 2002. He has evaluated both NFL and college players for Scouts Inc., but his current focus is on the NFL draft.

ALSO SEE