Saturday, 13 February 2010

POTD: Bruce Campbell, T, Maryland

By Kip Earlywine

Height: 6'7"
Weight: 310 lbs.
Unofficial 40: 4.94


  • Prototypical size (and could add more)
  • Probably the most athletic tackle in the draft
  • Sub-5 40, fast, agile
  • Natural, comfortable, polished, instinctive
  • Does a wonderful job squaring and staying square with pass rushers
  • Above average run blocker
  • Near elite pass blocker
  • Monster Potential
  • Could excel in zone or man
  • No off the field issues that I could find


  • Injuries, injuries, injuries
  • Deceptive footwork? Is a little slow vs. inside moves

Sound bites:

"Consider Bruce Campbell the Jason Smith of the 2010 NFL Draft class. His stock will be soaring through the roof once we get to the Combine, however, he is more of a natural pass protector than Smith."

-Matt McGuire (Walter Football)

"Campbell is just as -- if not more -- adept at guarding the blindside as [Anthony Davis and Trent Williams] and there is every reason to think he could develop into a dominant NFL run blocker."

-KC Joyner, (draft lab series)

My thoughts:

Campbell is my favorite player in the entire draft that I don't want the Seahawks to touch with a 10-foot pole. He's had so many injuries its just ridiculous, in 3 college seasons he only totaled 17 combined starts and 21 total appearances. He did stay healthy in 2008, starting all 13 games, but suffered from turf toe and even an MCL in 2009 and pretty much didn't do anything last year. I've played with two turf toes and two sprained wrists all at once, injuries like those are not to be taken lightly and have a huge impact especially in the running game. Thankfully, they are largely preventable if a player always tapes up before every practice. I think after experiencing turf toe hell, Campbell will probably take more measures to prevent his next one, but the MCL is a bit more concerning. Knee injuries are one of the biggest career destroyers for linemen on both sides of the ball. Once you can't trust your knee anymore, you lose the power to drive block and you are forced to play careful instead of all-out. Campbell may recover from his MCL just fine, but the potential downside makes selecting him in the top 10 a huge risk.

Now that that's out of the way, its really too bad that Campbell has had those injuries, because I loved watching footage of him. He's the best tackle I've previewed so far at squaring his body with the defensive end and keeping the rusher from rushing around or inside him. He's strong enough that bull-rushing him is a waste of time, and he simply won't be beaten outside. His footwork doesn't look that good to me, which is weird considering he's such a freak athlete and is extremely good at staying centered on pass rushers which is much harder than it looks. Sometimes a rusher will make a nice inside move and Campbell almost looks like he's wearing concrete boots. Many experts rave about Campbell's footwork though and I'll definitely say this- I won't argue with the results. If he's that good at staying on top of defenders in pass pro and keeping up on edge rushes, then obviously he's doing something very right.

Campbell is a solidly above average run blocker as well, and usually you don't find tackles that are so good at both pass pro and run blocking.

Campbell's speed and athleticism could make his stock rocket at the combine. He could very well be a top 10 pick. If he had been healthy at Maryland, he'd probably be a lock in the top 5.

For me, he's just too risky. Especially since Gibbs has a penchant for finding good starters much later. But I do like him a lot, and if he stays healthy, I think he has a great chance of being a future pro-bowler.


Anonymous said...

Brilliant reference to Ash. It made me laugh. Thanks.

Jayce said...

I like Campbell the most out of all the LT's. Too bad he's injury prone. I actually wanted Hawks to pick him up with our first during the first half of the season.

c-hawker said...

I like Davis,Brown,Baluga,Campbell and Okung, in that order.
Davis may turn out to be the best of the bunch. I like Brown for the Hawk system though.
Red flag's on Campbell and Baluga.(staying healthy)
I think the Hawks should be trading down in this draft. We need more picks. Other than LB,TE AND C, We need help at every position. An uprade in depth is needed everywhere, except LB.

Kip Earlywine said...

Anonymous- you're welcome. Sam Raimi needs to make more movies.

Anonymous said...

Rodger that c-hawker.

Ben said...

I'm really worried about injuries on the OL. Good OLs are built on consistency, continuity and teamwork. Every game that a player sits is one less game that the OL is able to play together. Even if we grab the best OT on the board,its not going to help the OL if he's out for 3-4 games a year and everybody else has to be shuffled around in his absence.

CLanterman said...

I'll just echo your sentiments and say if not for the injuries, I'd love to have Campbell on our team. If the turf toe is easily preventable, and the MCL tear was just a flue, then yes, I'd say go ahead and draft him at 14.

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