Notre Dame center/guard, Jarrett Patterson was part of a ND offensive line that was probably the best OL in the country in 2020 (PFF hailed them as such at the time.) Kyren Williams had 5.3 yards per carry that season. Quarterback Ian Book also benefited, becoming a 4th round pick in the 2021 draft. Aaron Banks, Liam Eichenberg and Robert Hainsey were all Day 2 draft picks. Tommy Kraemer was an UDFA, but he did make 3 starts during his rookie season as an injury replacement, playing for the Detroit Lions. Patterson is the last starter from that great 2020 offensive line to enter the NFL draft. Where will he get drafted and will he succeed in the NFL?
Dominating college offensive lines don't always produce good NFL linemen. In 2013, Boston College had a powerful offensive line, creating massive holes for their running back, Andre Williams, who piled up a staggering 2,177 rushing yards and won the Doak Walker award. Ryan Day was the OC for BC that season.
Williams was a 4th round pick by the New York Giants. None of the OL on BC's roster found success in the NFL. Three guys were UDFAs. One was almost immediately waived. Another one failed to even make his team's PS. The 3rd guy stayed on a PS for one season. The center, Andy Gallik, was drafted late in the 6th round in 2015 by the Titans. Gallik was considered to be a smart, phone booth blocker, but with poor athleticism and mobility. When Brian Schwenke suffered a serious season ending injury, Gallik made 8 starts as a rookie. Gallik had an injury the following offseason that effectively ended his career.
Williams lasted 2 years with the NYG. As a rookie, he led the team in rushing but only had an anemic 3.3 yards per carry. The Giants kept 5 RBs on the roster in 2016, but Williams wasn't one of them, becoming a disappointing 4th round pick that didn't even make the team in year 3.
Jarrett Patterson has a Day 2 draft grade from at least 5 major draft experts, by my count. At least as many other experts have him in the 4th to 5th round range. Should he be a prime target for the Rams as a center prospect? Or, is Patterson overrated, a recognizable name, but not a good prospect? I've noticed considerable movement by Patterson on a couple of draft boards recently, moving way up on one board, but sliding down on another one. So, I get a gut feeling that there are diverging opinions about this player within the draft community.
In order to understand Patterson as a prospect, I feel it is necessary to watch games from multiple different season. When Patterson was healthy back in 2020, he was an excellent player. IMO, he was very similar as a prospect to Creed Humphrey. Once he started getting hurt, it was like he was a completely different guy. So, when you read my report, you'll probably think I got my notes mixed up and I accidentally watched 2 different prospects. No, it's the same player. He just looked like 2 completely different players.
The "good" version of Patterson probably deserves to get drafted in the same area where Creed Humphrey was selected. The "bad" version of Patterson looked more like an UDFA. Which version will his NFL team get? I have no clue, that's what makes him such an interesting draft prospect. Probably need to ask the team doctor and look at his medical records.
Name: Jarrett Patterson. Turns 24 years old in September. Redshirt 5th year senior. Coach called him "J Patt"
School: Notre Dame.
Size: Listed 6'4 1/2'' tall, 310 pounds. Per NFLDB 9 3/4'' hands, 31 3/4'' arms, 77'' wingspan, 5.04 sec (40 time). Per SI 6'4 3/4'' tall, 307 pounds, 5.16 sec (40 time)
From Laguna Hills, CA. Played for Mission Viejo high school, 4 star recruit.
Redshirted in 2018. Three year starter at center, then played left guard in 2022. Made 13 starts in 2019 (5 QB hurries per NFLDB), 8 starts 2020 (8 QB hurries), 13 starts in 2021 (11 QB hurries), 12 starts at LG in 2022.
Allowed zero sacks entire college career. Team captain for ND in both 2021 and 2022.
Lisfranc fracture (left foot) in 2020, pin removed in foot in 2021, missed spring practices. Torn pec in spring of 2022 lifting weights, out all spring practices. Missed 1 game in 2022 due to sprained foot (right foot), very painful and required extensive rehab just to be able to play in games during 2022 season.
Marcus Freeman, the HC for ND, said that he was an ultimate ironman, was injured all 2022 season, but battled multiple injuries, sacrificed his body for Notre Dame and was a great captain and leader.
In interviews, he's intelligent and answers questions appropriately. Buys into "football family" culture of his team. Teammates describe him as a warrior and very passionate about Notre Dame football.
ESPN 105th overall (4th rd)
CBSSports 156th (5th rd)
Drafttek 86th (3rd rd)
Shane Hallam 35th (early 2nd rd)
Brian Bosarge 74 (3rd rd)
PFN 106th (4th rd)
NFLDB 165th (5th rd)
Steelers Depot (Jonathan Heitritter) 3rd round grade
TDN 4th round grade
Sports Illustrated (in June of 2022) 2nd round grade
SteelersDepot: Good size, experienced at both G and C. Never allowed a sack in 4 seasons. Good anchor, knee bender. Picks up stunts and twists. Plays through the whistle. Drives legs through blocks. Limited athlete. Lacks lateral movement, explosiveness, raw strength and power. Occasionally falls off of blocks with poor hand placements or overrunning the block. Hands outside frame due to poor foot speed. Lacks mobility. High floor, low ceiling player, a starter or good backup in the NFL. 3rd rd grade.
TDN: Very good size, stocky lower half. Average athlete. Excellent run blocker, very good pad level, good leg drive. Excellent balance, natural knee bender. Above average power. Lacks foot quickness and coordination in space. Times punch well on pass blocks. Above average anchor. Average lateral quickness. Calls out blitzes, picks up stunts. Fits in gap and power scheme. 4th rd grade.
NFLDB: Enough range as puller, quickness and flexibility on reach blocks. Fundamentally sound, good awareness and intelligence. Leadership traits, positive attitude. Raw as pass protector, too upright. Sloppy hand placements, short arms, more comfortable as pass blocker than as run blocker.
SI (in June): High floor, low ceiling. Technique and IQ only partially compensate for his underwhelming athletic profile. Consistently recognizes stunts. Wide base, quick, accurate and well timed hands. Impressive grip strength. Reliably mirrors. Has 1 vs 1 power. Only can play in a gap scheme in NFL. Struggles vs delayed rushers. Concerning anchor and power. Often push pull, stack shed or bench pressed by opponent. Gets thrown around by defenders that reach his frame. Struggles on reach blocks. Poor change of direction ability. Sometimes fails to pick up stunts that he sees due to athletic limitations. 2nd round grade.
His tape is very difficult to evaluate, because as I noted above, he looked like a completely different guy in 2020 compared to later seasons. Instead of exhaustively listing all his strengths, let's just say the good version was basically Creed Humphrey. Almost every single weakness I list, all you have to do is write in "He was better at that back in 2020." Yes, I know it is going to get confusing, because some of the things I'll write about him are internally inconsistent, just completely opposite of each other. But, that's exactly what the tape shows.
Active feet in his set, doesn't stop feet as pass blocker. Works to maintain wide base and keep balance.
Agile, sufficient mobility. Able to get his hips around and make seals on reach blocks and zone runs. Engages hips into block and runs his legs through blocks. Very good ankle and knee flexibility, able to settle down bull rushes and gain leverage on run blocks. On combo blocks, able to get to hip of the DT and generate movement to widen the gap. Enough speed to execute pulls and screens. Effective 2nd level blocker.
Gets hands inside the frame of defender, solid hand placements.
Gets low on short yardage plays and can drive forward. On short yardage runs, able to swim over DT to avoid getting held and get to his assignment.
Prototypical height and weight for an interior NFL lineman. Has mass in the (what rhymes with mass? Ummm, he has thickness in his lower half. Apparently, the Notre Dame training table didn't run out of roast beef.) Difficult to completely run him over. Even if he's in trouble, can drop anchor and at least partially salvage block, stay engaged with defender instead of getting shoved off, which might be a factor in why he didn't give up any sacks.
I liked his pass blocking form better in 2022 playing at guard than when he was playing center.
Maximizes his limited length by fully extending his arms and maintaining a solid base.
Shotgun snaps consistently hit the target. Shows the ability to snap both with QB under center and in shotgun.
Smart. Snapped ball early to catch DL jumping into the neutral zone. Good job while playing G recognizing twists. Against a complex 4 man game, Patterson at guard is aware to the looping LB, stuffs it and shoves the LB backwards, off balance. Playing at G, scanned to see if his LT needed help.
Enough size and wide frame to be able to play guard in the NFL. Very experienced starter with extensive number of games at 2 different spots. Played at major conference school against high quality opponents.
Football is important to him, strong football character and leadership traits. Played in his team's bowl game, didn't opt out. Drew attention and criticism for incident after ND's upset loss to Marshall where he was visibly so upset that he removed his jersey and walked off field instead of participating in tradition of singing the school's alma mater after the game. Played through injury in 2022. Put in extra work during summer on footwork and technique to prepare to play guard in the fall after his weight training workouts. Team oriented attitude.
Not explosive out of his stance after the snap, doesn't load energy into his initial steps or carry sufficient power or momentum into initial contact. Needs help from his G on double teams to consistently generate movement. Not a solo block people mover.
A slow twitch athlete who doesn't process the action quickly with his eyes, I think the speed of the NFL game is going to be tough for him to match. Beaten by LBs on run blitzes. Slanting DTs can penetrate by him right off the snap.
Has very short arms and a small wingspan relative to his body. Did someone glue Austin Blythe's arms onto him? His wingspan is nearly identical to Brian Allen's wingspan, even though Allen is only 6'1 1/8'' tall and Patterson is supposedly pushing 6'5'' tall. An odd combination.
Due to limited length, tends to lunge forward on both run and pass blocks, helmet can get ahead of toes. Gets flung around by defenders with superior length. Got pulled down by DT and fell forward to the ground. Hunched over on solo run block, not able to generate good power. On combo block, head ducked forward, the DT unexpected moves to the side, causing Patterson to lose balance and when the LB runs by, he grabs the LB for a holding penalty. Susceptible to swim and push pull moves. Beaten immediately by 2 hand swipe and appears to try to hold the defender from behind to try to prevent sack.
Gets stacked and shed by bigger DTs at the point of attack. On wide zone runs, can struggle vs power and get pushed into backfield.
On zone run, he leans forward into the DT and when there is a twist by the DTs, the 2nd DT shoves him from the side, he's not in a position to brace himself, because he's hunched over, so he gets knocked backwards off the LOS.
Sometimes has passive hand placements, his hand goes outside the shoulder of the DT and he struggles to get it on the defender and keep it engaged, preventing him from controlling the block and robbing him of play strength.
Poor mobility. Slow climbing to the LB on combo blocks, limited lateral range if he has to cover ground to the side to get to the LB on combo blocks. Very ugly and stiff climb to 2nd level to try to block LB. Too slow to get out in front on screen passes. Slow on pull blocks. Poor body control at the 2nd level.
Limited lateral range when pass blocking. If the rusher attacks his edge, his range can max out and the defender can slip by. Can get walked back to the QB by defender who has superior length. Gives up ground at front of the pocket.
LB converting speed to power explodes into chest of Patterson as his punch misses and he ends up hugging the LB, put on skates and driven backwards to the QB.
Limited recovery quickness, DT pulls him down by arms and goes by him. Didn't have enough quickness and hip fluidity to swing his hips around and cut off penetration when DT converted speed to power, so the DT drives through him and gets pressure right in face of QB.
Didn't maintain sufficient depth to help the G, which resulted in the LB looping behind the DT to have a perfect lane to the QB and be 100% unblocked. Against zone blitz, when his DT drops into pass coverage, Patterson didn't have enough depth to properly help the G.
Catches A gap blitzers, doesn't step up and stuff them. In addition to making it tough to stop the blitzer, one of the other consequences of this is if there is a cross blitz, the 2nd LB coming behind has plenty of space to operate.
Lapses in awareness. Falls asleep vs 3 man loop, caught by surprise by the DT who shoves him off balance. The LB loops around the DT, so the G has too many defenders to handle by himself. Patterson playing C is late to recognize what is happening and doesn't help the G in time, allowing the DT to slip between the G and C and there is a jailbreak to the QB. Didn't handle cross dog blitz properly, allows the 2nd LB to be free to the QB.
The zero sack stat is misleading, because some of his plays were "sack worthy" snaps, similar to a QB who throws the ball to a defender, but the INT gets dropped.
Doesn't scan quickly enough side to side with his eyes. Late recognizing danger from LB blitz. When a DT crosses his face, he isn't quick to turn the other way and protect the gap. As help blocker, didn't identify danger from DT quickly enough, resulting in pressure in face of QB. Slow to turn to react to twist. Falls asleep against some run blitzes, not properly adjusting to pick off the defender.
The flight of the ball on shotgun snaps isn't consistent. Sometimes the point of the ball spirals in the direction of the QB, other times it wobbles to the side so that the ball is diagonal to the QB, other times the ball tumbles end over end to the QB. I don't know if he's doing that on purpose, but it just looks odd, because it would seem to me to be more difficult for the QB to catch the ball while his eyes were up focused more on reading the defense and not looking directly at the ball. Every now and then the snap would be slightly low, requiring the QB to drop his hands to catch the ball. I wonder if he changed his snap technique, because back in 2020 sometimes his snap would drift high or wide of the QB and the velocity of the snap wasn't consistent.
Average in short yardage situations. Not enough drive and power to move the LOS or create a surge.
Multiple plays the rest of the OL moved prior to his snap and I couldn't tell if they messed up or if he was late snapping the ball.
Older than a normal prospect. Durability question marks. Battled multiple injuries, including upper and lower body and to both feet.
Draft Grade and Pro Comp
Your guess is as good as mine. Let's spin the wheel... and it lands on... 5th round. Creed Humphrey (late 2nd round 2021, Kansas City Chiefs, Oklahoma) or Calvin Throckmorton (UDFA 2020, New Orleans Saints, Oregon)
Throckmorton was one of the "bigger name" OL prospects to go undrafted in 2020. Throck was 6'5'' tall, 317 pounds, 32.5'' arms, 5.57 sec (40 time), 4.98 sec (short shuttle), 27'' vert and 23 bench reps. In terms of academics, Throck was probably one of the most intelligent players in the entire draft. He played tackle in college, but projected as an interior lineman for the pros.
In Luke Easterling's way too early mock draft prior to Throck's final season at Oregon, he was the 34th overall pick (early 2nd rd), ahead of players such as Joe Burrow, Justin Jefferson, Jeff Okudah, Mekhi Becton, Tee Higgins and Jonah Jackson. In Matt Miller's rankings in September of 2019, Throck was the 6th best OT in the draft and named the biggest OT draft sleeper, ranked higher than Austin Jackson (who would be the 18th overall pick in the draft.)
I wrote about Throckmorton in March of 2020 and gave him a late round grade. At that time, he was ranked as a 4th round prospect by CBSSports and an early 5th round player by Drafttek.
Throck started 14 games as a rookie, primarily due to a season ending injury to the seemingly always hurt Andrus Peat. He had a terrible 42.4 PFF grade. Throck again was an injury replacement in 2022, making 6 starts. He had an even worse 38.4 PFF grade, ranking 77th out of 78 qualifying guards. In other words, the last 2 seasons, Bobby Evans and Calvin Throckmorton have had nearly identical effectiveness, per PFF metrics.
Creed Humphrey is considered to be one of the best, if not the best center in the NFL. If a team things that all they have to do is give Patterson time to rest and heal up, maybe once he gets healthy he'll become an elite starter with Pro Bowl potential. On the other hand, a team might think that the 2020 version of Patterson is gone forever, that all the injuries have taken taken too much of a toll on what was only an average athlete to begin with, that he's just a shadow of his former self. In which case, is it worth even drafting Patterson at all? Maybe just to be a deep backup player, a late round prospect.
Jarrett Patterson is a very strange prospect. He could go in the 2nd round or not be drafted at all and neither of those scenarios would shock me. They both could be reasonable evaluations of his projected value as an NFL player. Should the Rams draft this player? Don't ask me, I have no idea. What do you think? He very easily could be the next Barrett Jones (4th rd 2013). Or, he could be the next John Sullivan (Notre Dame, 6th rd 2008).