Taylor Decker, the Big Ten Offensive Lineman of the Year award winner, will bring his ferociousness, physicality and talent to the Detroit Lions, after he was selected 16th overall in the first round.
Decker is an imposing tackle, standing at 6'7 and 310 lbs, with a nasty streak to him. He became a starter as a sophomore at right tackle and transitioned to the blind side for his final two seasons in Columbus, where he was the anchor of the dominant Ohio State offensive line. In 2015, Decker and co. paved the way for Ezekiel Elliott's 1,821 rushing yards and 23 touchdowns. His run blocking is where he will gain instant respect, as the Buckeyes ran behind him when they needed the tough yardage. His pass blocking will need to become more consistent, but Decker is coachable and will constantly improve.
An anonymous scout had to say this about Decker's leadership and toughness, " Just a man's man," said the scout. "Wins you over with his leadership. You could see this guy running for Congress some day. He's like Jon Runyan."
After finishing his career on a high note by bullying the talented Michigan and Notre Dame defensive lines, Decker performed well for someone of his size at the NFL Combine, where he posted a 5.23 40-yard dash, ran 4.76 seconds in the 20-yard shuttle and posted 20 reps on the bench press. He improved at the Ohio State pro day, where he added two additional reps to his bench press total. Decker also spent his draft preparation training at LeCharles Bentley's O-Line Performance, where Bentley is mentoring and training young, successful offensive linemen for the NFL.
Decker does not possess the elite athleticism or arm length to be a cornerstone left tackle; however, he will have a long career as a right tackle and an eventual team captain in the NFL.