We do not have a left tackle. That's it in a nutshell. The most important position on the offensive line is currently in a completely unacceptable status. We have a guy we wasted an extremely high pick on who was supposed to be able to take the job (Smith), getting concussions every time we turn around, and and the guy we drafted to play right tackle (Saffold) getting his ass handed to him and getting our quarterback killed. To make it even worse, when we try to help with a tight end, Bajema throws a "lookout" block and then grabs his head when Sam gets planted. I don't have the answers, but will expand the question after the jump.
This is why I have a hard time deciding what to do with the number 6 pick. Left tackle has not been addressed. Right now, the only two tackles that will be available will be Martin and Reiff. If Kalil falls to us, great, but I seriously doubt that will happen. DO I think Reiff or Martin is worth a number 6 pick? No, but I also know they won't last until the second round, and the drop between those two and the rest seems to be pretty dramatic.
DeCastro will probably be an all pro for years to come. Great. He still does not solve the problem of speed rushers off of the edge. He will be great for the running game, and can handle true rushing tackles, but the ends and outside linebackers will still be punishing Bradford. Let me put it this way. Which tackle currently on the roster would you trust to put one on one against OUR current defensive ends? Take the practice protection jersey off of Sam, and who do you trust? Who can SAM trust?
Now we come to Blackmon. The guy is a great player and will probably have a good career as a pro. Here is my issue with taking him over a Left Tackle. There is a bigger drop in talent from Martin and Reiff to Mike Adams and Zebrie Sanders than there is from Blackmon to Steven Hill, Alshon Jeffrey and Mohamed Sanu. I would even throw Tommy Streeter and Reuben Randall into the mix as well.
That's it in a nutshell. If we can trade for a LEGITIMATE left tackle, or sign one in free agency, I will be cool with drafting Blackmon, DeCastro, Richardson or any other position of need, but if not, I can't see leaving Bradford's blindside unprotected again and letting him take the hits he did last year. A QB has to have at least 3 seconds to make a 3 step drop and thro a quick slant route. Bradford had less than that on far too many occasions last year. If we can trade down to a later pick in the first round and still get Reiff or Martin and gain even more picks in two or three, I would be thrilled. If not, I think we have to take one of the tackles with the number six pick..