OG Rodney Austin (Elon) - Undrafted Free Agent
Rodney Austin is one of three offensive guards who joined the Detroit Lions as an undrafted free agent this offseason. He is one of four undrafted free agent offensive linemen, but as noted on Tuesday, Quinn Barham is the lone tackle. Austin, along with Pat Boyle and J.C. Oram, are now among the offensive guards on the Lions' roster.
Positives: Wide-bodied blocker who is effective in motion. Quickly sets up off the snap, bends his knees and easily adjusts to oncoming defenders. Jolts opponents at the point of attack, keeps his feet moving in pass protection and shows some explosiveness in his game. Moves well on his feet, covers a lot of area on the field and easily gets out to the second level or into the defensive backfield and removes opponents from plays. Leverage blocker who stays square and seals defenders from the action.
Negatives: Lacks strength at the point of attack, does not play to his size and struggles finishing blocks. Indecisive and does not attack assignments.
Note: He is No. 64.
Outlook for 2012
Unlike at offensive tackle, there is no logjam of talent at offensive guard. In fact, aside from the two starters, there is only one offensive guard from last season still on the team. This means that after Rob Sims and Stephen Peterman, Jacques McClendon is the lone offensive guard who wasn't signed as an undrafted free agent this year. While the Lions may not keep more than the two starters because center Dylan Gandy can play some guard as well, somebody like Austin could certainly earn a spot on the 53-man roster with a strong training camp and preseason.
More scouting reports: Riley Reiff, Ryan Broyles, Dwight "Bill" Bentley, Ronnell Lewis, Tahir Whitehead, Chris Greenwood, Jonte Green, Travis Lewis, Kellen Moore, Stephfon Green, Troy Burrell, Patrick Edwards, Jared Karstetter, Wallace Miles, Alex Gottlieb, Austin Wells, Quinn Barham