Luke Goedeke draft profile

Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

The Office

I wasn't aware that there's a college major called Paper Science. Students in that discipline study the industrial manufacturing of paper. Five years ago, Luke Goedeke was a student at Wisconsin Stevens Point, with a double major in Chemical Engineering and Paper Science. From a tiny town in eastern Wisconsin, Goedeke grew up dreaming of playing Division 1 football at the University of Wisconsin. Often, childhood dreams don't come true and the door of opportunity doesn't swing open.

By 2017, Goedeke's football dreams appeared to be done. No football scholarship offer from Wisconsin. No scholarship offer from any Division 1 school, for that matter. So, he was embarking on a new chapter of his life at UWSP, learning how to make paper. He wasn't on the football team at UWSP, a Division III school, he was just another regular student.

That summer, in a moment of quiet reflection, sitting in a church, Goedeke decided to give football another try, to chase the dream one more time. Thus, began one of the most improbable ascents in the 2022 NFL draft class. In a relatively short period of time, Goedeke would go from being a no name walk on backup TE at a Division III school to the starting right tackle at Central Michigan, to a prized NFL draft prospect.

Does Goedeke's story sound familiar to you? JJ Watt was lightly recruited out of high school and began his college career as a TE at Central Michigan, the same school where Goedeke ended up. Watt gave up his scholarship at CMU and decided to walk on at Wisconsin. In order to pay for school, Watt worked as a pizza delivery driver. Ben Bartch was a 4th round pick in 2020. He was a backup TE at a Division III school (St John's in Minnesota), moved to OT and is now a guard for the Jaguars. After an injury to another player, Bartch started most of 2021 for the Jags and graded out as a middle of the pack NFL guard.

Goedeke had no recruiting interest from Division 1 schools when he was in high school. He jokingly refers to himself as a negative 2 star recruit. He was recruited by some D2 and D3 schools, but he suffered a separated shoulder his final season in high school, playing through the injury. As his football prospects slipped away, Goedeke says he went to a "dark place" emotionally after he got injured and contemplated quitting football.

In the summer of 2017, after his first year of college, Goedeke changed his mind and asked to walk on to the UWSP football team. He was a 250 pound TE. Not expecting much, he says he was surprised when the coaches named him to be a starter that fall. He had 12 catches for 132 yards that season.

Still having a burning desire to play D1 ball, Goedeke took the initiative to try to advance his football career. He sent his tape by e-mail to different Division 1 schools, including to his dream school, Wisconsin.

CMU invited him for a visit. The head coach for CMU at the time was John Bonamego, who is now a senior assistant in the Rams organization. Goedeke was only hoping for an invitation to walk-on, but CMU offered him a scholarship. Shortly after arriving at CMU, he changed positions from TE to OL in order to improve his chances at being on the field. He redshirted in 2018.

Dedicating himself in the weight room and eating to bulk up, he weighed 285 to 290 pounds in 2019. He started 14 games at right tackle and was graded by PFF as CMU's best player that season. He says his pass blocking was shaky in 2019 and not as good as his run blocking.

Goedeke injured his knee and had surgery in 2020, missing the entire season. Bounced back with another great season in 2021. PFF gave him a 94.3 run blocking grade. He turns 24 years old in November.

Goedeke says he loves imposing his will on opponents on the field and demolishing defenders. He does his work behind closed doors and isn't an attention seeker who wants the spotlight, a grinder. Humble and dedicated. Good friends with CMU's left tackle, Bernhard Raimann, who is expected to be a 1st round pick.

Will Goedeke beat opponents to a pulp in the NFL?


Senior Bowl: 6'4 1/4'' tall, 318 pounds, 33 1/8'' arms, 9 5/8'' hands, 80 3/8'' wingspan

Combine: 6'5'' tall, 312 pounds, 32 1/4'' arms, 9 3/4'' hands, 79 7/8'' wingspan

26 bench reps at Combine.

His arms measured about a full inch differently at the SB compared to the Combine. I wish they would figure out a better way of standardizing the method. What is the point of measuring something to 1/8th of an inch if the variance of your measurements is so large?

Lance Zierlein 6.22 draft grade (exactly the same as Charlie Kolar, the TE), compared to Jets offensive lineman, Connor McGovern, who was a 5th round pick by the Broncos out of Missouri in 2016. McGovern had a 75.9 PFF grade last year, ranking as the 9th best center in the NFL. Compare draft grade to Ohio State guard, Wyatt Davis 6.24 (3rd round 2021) and Damien Lewis 6.22 (early 3rd round 2020), so LZ's grade would roughly translate to Goedeke being a 3rd round prospect.

LZ calls Goedeke a "rancorous run blocker" with a surly field demeanor, sustains and finishes blocks like an NFL vet, strength and quickness to succeed in any run scheme, lacks length, has issues with counter moves, will lunge against speed. Quoted a former NFL exec who predicted that he'll have a better pro career than Bernhard Raimann.

Injured his hamstring on the first day of Senior Bowl practices and it has hampered him throughout the predraft process. Has been training with former NFL OL coach Paul Alexander and with Joe Staley (who played at CMU).

ESPN 97th overall (late 3rd)

PFF 100th overall (late 3rd)

Tony Pauline 139th (late 4th)

Ian Cummings 251st (7th rd)

Oliver Hodgkinson 285th (UDFA)

Shane Hallam 255th (7th rd)

Brian Bosarge 204th (late 6th)

Drafttek 291st (UDFA)

Kyle Crabbs 5th rd. Crabbs projects him to be a backup interior OL in the NFL who is suited for a gap and power scheme team. Says he struggled to mirror and stay attached to LSU defenders, compared to Cole Madison (5th rd 2018).

CBSSports 101st (late 3rd)

Not drafted in Chad Reuter's 4 round mock draft.

TDN 228th (7th round)

I tried to list a large number of rankings, because as you can see that is a wide split in opinions on Goedeke. Half a dozen of the boards have him as about a 7th round to UDFA prospect. Four major rankings have him ranked high enough to be a potential BPA for the Rams at their first draft slot, late in the 3rd round, and if you think interior OL is one of the bigger team needs for the Rams, that could make Goedeke a prime candidate for that 3rd round pick.


Fights to sustain blocks. If he can get hands on defender, has good grip strength, but his arms aren't that long, especially for an OT. Maximizes his average length.

Very patient blocker, head up, flat back. He's worked hard to improve his pass blocking technique and still has room to grow. Slapped arm of DE down. Able to settle down bull rushes.

Moves quickly out of his stance after snap. Good initial lateral quickness on scoop blocks.

Slides smoothly to protect inside gap, then can change directions and move laterally in the opposite direction to pick up a different defender. Adequate lateral agility to mirror LB movement on 2nd level block.

Unlocks hips into down block and walks his feet forward to generate movement.

Good awareness. Nice late switch on combo block to get LB and finish the block. Solid handling twists. Eyeballs LB while engaged with DL and finishes combo by going to get the LB. Notices details on field. CB tips off blitz early and RT scanning before the snap sees it and is ready.

Widens his stance in pass pro and anchors. Good balance. Solid recovery ability. Nice recovery to push rusher past the back of the pocket.

Good size and frame to be an NFL guard. Has lower body mass.

Finishes blocks and plays to the whistle. Follows up. Defender played with high pads and Goedeke drives him 6 yards off the LOS, then gives him one last shove at end of play to let him know who's boss.

Good mix of physicality, technique and composure.

Doesn't commit many penalties. Sound hand placements, doesn't panic. A consistent and reliable performer. McVay loves the word "conscientious" and that's Goedeke. He's conscientious with his technique and execution.

Self starter, good football character. How he got from UWSP to where he is today, I don't consider it to be just trivia, I think it is a key part to the evaluation. Things weren't handed to him on a silver platter. Goedeke started from being out of football entirely and worked his rear end off to get to this point. To me, that's a key trait to be a pro, every bit as important, if not more important than how many bench reps he did or whether he can run fast. Some players "want it", others are lazy. Football matters to Goedeke.


Not enough kick slide ability to stay outside at OT full time in the NFL. Struggles to protect edge against speed and in order to get enough depth he opens himself up to inside countermoves. Has to open hips too early in pass sets, and sometimes has to go into desperate scramble mode to try to save block. Beaten by spin moves. Due to limited length, sometimes ducks his head forward at top of pass rush. Beaten badly by a push pull move. Beaten by swim move right off of snap on RPO.

On his heels too much in pass blocking stance, can be tossed backwards if DE converts speed to power.

Average feet in pass protection, not enough lateral quickness to mirror and sustain for extended period or against better pass rush moves. Once his lateral range "runs out" the pass rusher can attack his edge.

Hands are not active or violent enough. Average hand speed. Loses hand fights.

Not elite at sustaining blocks, either on run or pass plays. He consistently makes good reactions to the first move, but has more problems reacting to defender's 2nd move. Roasted by spin counter move.

Inexperienced and appears to make occasional mental mistakes. Too concerned protecting outside shoulder of his RG and turned edge rusher loose to the QB. Inexperienced showed when his RG was in trouble and RT didn't have feel for how to block 2 defenders at the same time. Appeared to blow his assignment on a run block.

Average torque in hands on kickout blocks.

Average speed and agility as a puller. Adequate speed to get the job done, but not impressive in space.

Hits targets a little high. Not a mauler. Unlocks his hips, but only average power and play strength. Not a great drive blocker in short yardage.

Has had self-doubt in the past, could have confidence issues if he struggles in the NFL. Not a vocal, team leader type personality, more of a Robin who could benefit from having a Whitworth type Batman.

A medium ceiling prospect. Might never be more than an average starter. Doesn't have elite length, athleticism or strength. Profiles more as a steady player, not a star.

Played RT in college, but likely will move inside, so it could take time for him to learn a new position before he's ready to compete for a starting job. If team wanted to try him at C instead of G, he'll have to learn how to snap the ball reliably.

Has had some injuries. Older than most prospects.

Pro Comparison and Grade

David Edwards (5th round 2019, Rams, Wisconsin), 4th round grade.

I like this player. I have him graded higher than Shane Lemieux (5th round 2020 NYG, Oregon) and in that 2020 draft class I would take Goedeke ahead of a bunch of OL drafted in the 3rd and 4th rounds that year.

Lance Zierlein had a 5th round projection on David Edwards and predicted that he would only be an average backup to a low end starter. I think Goedeke can be at least as good, maybe even better than Edwards. I see him as a future starting NFL guard. He'll likely never be a Pro Bowl player, but there's also no glaring weakness with Goedeke. He's got some size, some aggressiveness, some athleticism, he's smart with solid technique. A high floor, solid all around prospect.

I don't know why so many draft boards have Goedeke ranked so low. I think he'd be a solid middle round pick and if for whatever reason he slides past the slot where David Edwards was taken late in the 5th round he could be a draft steal for some team.

In a game of rock, paper, scissors, Luke Goedeke would be the rock.