With the 23rd overall pick the Detroit Lions select… Riley Reiff, offensive tackle, from Iowa.
Riley Reiff is a 6’6”, 313 pound offensive lineman who can play both tackle and guard, and has claimed (himself) he can also play center. Reiff should come in and compete at right tackle instantly, while grooming to become the future left tackle.
Riley did not have a great combine, but what an offensive lineman does while running in a 40 yard straight line, and competing in an actual game is two different things. Reiff demonstrates quick feet and great hand placement which is important for any offensive lineman in the NFL. Riley started 37 of 39 games for the Hawkeyes. He started at left tackle for 29 games, while he had one start at right tackle and seven starts at left guard.
There is no denying Riley Reiff’s versatility, but there are some people who doubt his arm length. Riley’s arms measure in at 33 ½ inches. While most say left tackles in the NFL should have 34” plus arms, tell that to Jake Long (32 7/8) and Joe Thomas (33 ¼). Also players like St Louis tackle Jason Smith (33 ¾) and Michael Oher (33 ½) were drafted in round one.
Riley was a tight end in high school as long as a defensive lineman. He was recruited to Iowa to play on the defensive line, but was asked shortly after to transition to the offensive line. He quickly impressed the coaches and has never looked back.
Reiff brings versatility to the Detroit Lions offensive line, with the capability to play instantly at multiple positions. Riley’s main strength relies in his pass blocking. With his quick feet and great lateral movement he can move his rushers and seal the edge. His run blocking is also above average. With Riley being a 3-time South Dakota state wrestling champion, he has that nastiness to take on his man and drive him into the ground.
Riley Reiff is a technician with good athleticism. He can start in multiple positions on Detroit’s offensive line with the potential to be the Lion’s future left tackle.
Here are a couple of links with Riley playing against Oklahoma and Nebraska: