Third in a series looking at potential "sleeper" prospects for the Patriots heading into the 2011 NFL draft:
Will Rackley, G/T, Lehigh
HT/WT: 6'3", 309 | 40 Yard: 5.39 | Projection: 3rd - 4th
Rackley played started tackle at Lehigh, and projects to the inside at the pro level. He has prototypical size for a Patriots guard, but lacks the measured athleticism that the Patriots look for (although his playing speed is better than his timed speed). Still, he offers great technique, an ability to pull, to engage blockers using his arms, and rarely does not sustain his blocks. The Patriots have shown a lot of interest in this guy, so don't count him out sometime during day two (although I'm not his biggest fan).
Brandon Fusco, C/G, Slippery Rock
HT/WT: 6'4", 306 | 40 Yard: 5.18 | Projection: 4th - 5th
I won't blame you if you've never heard of the Slippery Rock football program. And I won't blame you quite yet if you haven't heard of Brandon Fusco, although I do believe you will hear about him soon enough. The Patriots have shown a lot of interest in Fusco, which should count for something. He also has the typical frame, strength, and athleticism the Patriots look for in their interior offensive lineman. An excellent pass blocker, Fusco is still a little raw. Nonetheless, I see him as a player that could be taken between rounds three and five that becomes a starter a year or so down the road.
Zane Taylor, C/G, Utah
HT/WT: 6'2.5", 309 | 40 Yard: 5.40 | Projection: 6th - 7th
Tough. Experienced. Smart. A leader. These are qualities that describe Utah center/guard Zane Taylor. He has pretty good technique and really anchors well against the run and against bull rushers. He has decent versatility, but is not athletic. Still, in the later rounds, Taylor could be an interesting prospect for the Patriots.
Other Prospects to Consider:
Caleb Schlauderaff, G/T, Utah
Zach Hurd, G/T, Connecticut
Tim Barnes, C/G, Missouri
Mike Person, G/T, Montana State