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Instant analysis of Detroit Lions selection of OL Colby Sorsdal

Quick thoughts breaking down the Detroit Lions’ fifth-round selection, OL Colby Sorsdal.

2023 NFL Draft - Rounds 4-7 Photo by David Eulitt/Getty Images

With their sole fifth-round pick, the Detroit Lions selected William & Mary offensive lineman Colby Sorsdal. Many expected the Lions to add a piece to their offensive line to solidify its future, and Sorsdal is an interesting prospect who could potentially be that patented Brad Holmes Day-3 pick.

Let’s take a closer look at Sorsdal.

Offensive line experts love him

Former NFL guard Brian Baldinger was all over Sorsdal in the pre-draft process. He tweeted this back at the top of the month:

His conclusion on Sorsdal:

“You watch him and he dominated his level of competition. Physically dominated people. That’s what you want to see. But he’s got size, he’s got good movement, and he throws guys off the screen. And then you watch him right here, and you go, ‘This is kinda what you want.’ You want a guy that’s got a little goon in him—just never, never hears the whistle. You go and you finish. That’s what you see from him.

He’s training with Duke Manyweather down in Dallas right now getting ready for the draft. I believe he’s a Day 3 draft pick that can end up starting at guard or tackle for you.”

As for Manyweather—one of the most well-respected offensive line trainers in football—he thinks Sorsdal’s future is bright, too.

Future guard competition?

While it’s entirely possible Sorsdal could be developmental depth for a swing tackle, don’t count out a potential move inside to guard. Sorsdal told the Detroit media that he only started at tackle at William & Mary, but he was taking reps inside during the East/West Shrine Game week. With only 33-inch arms, a move to guard would certainly make sense—and the Lions just so happen to have a huge long-term need there with Graham Glasgow, Halapoulivaati Vaitai and Jonah Jackson all on contracts that currently expire after 2023.

Off draft experts’ radar

If you put any stock into draft experts’ rankings—and I know most of you don’t—Sorsdal represented a significant reach. He wasn’t among Dane Brugler’s top 50 offensive tackles, nor did he make PFF’s big board. The only major analyst that had him ranked was Lance Zierlein. Although, Chad Reuter of did have Sorsdal go in the fifth round of his latest mock draft—173 overall, just 21 picks after he actually went.

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