2017 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Forrest Lamp
By Charlie Campbell
Summary: A common occurrence is college offensive tackles moving to guard or center in the NFL where those players turn into quality interior offensive linemen. That trend should continue in 2017 with Lamp being the top offensive line prospect for that.
At Western Kentucky, Lamp made 39 straight starts and was a tough lineman at the point of attack. He played left tackle and was a dependable pass protector in an offense that passed on the majority of plays. Lamp got a lot of experience in pass drops on the edge and was impressive with how he protected his quarterbacks.
After his strong collegiate career, Lamp was selected to participate in the Senior Bowl, where he was was the best offensive lineman prior to a high ankle sprain that ended his week early. Lamp was strong in pass protection in the one-on-ones and was physical in the ground game. The Senior Bowl weigh-in, however, gave NFL evaluators were given numerical evidence that Lamp is an interior lineman and pretty much ruleed out as a tackle prospect.
What makes Lamp a guard for the NFL is his body type. He is too short with extremely short arms, and that makes him a fit at guard. Lamp has nice feet and athleticism to make the switch to the inside. He also could be a candidate to move to center in the NFL, and in this analyst's opinion, that could be his best position as a pro.
From a skill-set perspective, Lamp is a technician with his pass blocking projecting very well to the NFL. He has good hand placement and excellent knee bend. He plays with good leverage and doesn't get caught reaching after defenders. His knee bend helps him to hold his ground, and his hand placement helps him to sustain blocks. He has quality feet to slide and mirror while also getting to the second level in the ground game. Lamp is a well-balanced blocker who was effective in college in both phases. As an interior lineman, Lamp should be a real asset in pass protection
In the ground game, Lamp gets to the spot, executes his blocks well, and is able to get the job done. He isn't a true bulldozer who blasts defenders off the line, but he can turn linemen to open holes. He also is good at cutting defenders. Lamp would be a great fit in a zone-blocking scheme at guard or center. In a power-man scheme, he probably would be better off at center.
This isn't a very strong offensive line draft overall and is especially weak at the tackle position. In recent years, there have been some surprise interior offensive linemen who went off the board late in the first round, so it is possible that Lamp sneaks into Thursday night. The most likely scenario is Lamp going on Friday night of the 2017 NFL Draft.
Player Comparison: Cody Whitehair. Typically, we don't use rookies for the comparison. There are a ton of similarities between Lamp and Whitehair, however. They are almost identical in size, and both were left tackles in college yet had to move inside for the NFL. Whitehair had a quality rookie season at center for the Bears in 2016. I think Lamp would be at his best playing center in the NFL and could be a blocker comparable to Whitehair.
NFL Matches: Jacksonville, Indianapolis, Baltimore, Detroit, Oakland, Cleveland, Denver, Minnesota, Seattle and San Diego
Minnesota and Seattle fielded two of the worst offensive lines in the NFL last year. Both teams could target Lamp. The Vikings could hope to land him in the second round. Seattle could even consider Lamp in the Round 1 and definitely if he gets to the team's second-round selection.
There are a lot of teams in need of offensive line help in the 2017 NFL Draft, but this is a weak class of prospects. Lamp could benefit from that and end up going higher than expected. The Browns need to find some offensive line upgrades and are coming armed with a lot of picks on the second day and the mid-rounds of the 2017 NFL Draft.
In the AFC South, the Jaguars need a left tackle and/or a left guard depending on what they do with Kelvin Beachum. Lamp could be a candidate to fill the guard spot Jacksonville for their high second-round pick. The Colts need to continue to build up their offensive line to better protect Andrew Luck.
Baltimore could use more guard talent, while Detroit could lose Larry Warford to another team. That would open up a hole at right guard for the Lions.
Denver needs a lot of help on its offensive line, and it wouldn't be surprising if the Broncos sign some veterans to upgrade their line. On the second day of the 2017 NFL Draft, they could target a guard upgrade like Lamp. San Diego also could consider a guard like Lamp considering D.J. Fluker is nearing the end of his contract.
2017 NFL Mock Draft: Charlie's | Walt's
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2017 NFL Draft Scouting Reports
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