OT Lydon Murtha (Nebraska) - Round 7, Pick No. 228
The Lions finally addressed their need for an offensive lineman in the seventh round. By then, though, any pick was going to be more of a long shot to someday actually make an impact. That's not to say that Lydon Murtha, the OT from Nebraska the Lions drafted, won't someday be a player that can contend for a starting job. It's just rare that seventh-round picks make an instant impact. Obviously the Lions felt confident enough in their current players to not worry about the O-line very much in the draft, so let's just hope that doesn't turn out to be a mistake.
Best traits per Scouts Inc.:
Excellent height, adequate bulk and rare top-end speed.
Moves well for player his size. Shows quick feet when gets into space but hips appear a bit stiff in pass protection.
POSITIVES: Sensational athlete still developing as an offensive lineman. Plays with a good amount of quickness, immediately sets up in pass protection, and displays better-than-average footwork sliding off the edge. Keeps his feet moving throughout the action, jolts opponents with good hand punch, and anchors at the point. Effectively uses his hands and works blocks hard.
NEGATIVES: Stiff in his pads and does not look as athletic on the field as he did during combine workouts. Lacks balance, on the ground too much, and he struggles finishing blocks. Not a natural knee bender.
NFL Combine (No. 39):
Outlook for 2009
Murtha will likely be no more than depth this season. He has lots of potential due to his athleticism and size, but that hasn't really translated too well to the football field. If his potential becomes a reality, then Murtha could very well be a pick we look back on and characterize as a steal.