What the Colts are getting in OT Blake Freeland
The Indianapolis Colts continue their trend of the 2023 NFL draft by addressing needs with the selection of offensive tackle Blake Freeland.
The tall (6-foot-8) tackle prospect helps fill the need for depth for the position and also gives Bernhard Raimann some competition for the starting left tackle spot.
Freeland just isn’t a big player, he also is one of the more athletic tackle prospects to enter the league. His 10-yard split, vertical jump, and broad jump were the best numbers among all offensive linemen at the combine.
According to his RAS score, he has good to elite athletic grades and ranks as the 23rd-best tackle since 1987.
Blake Freeland was drafted with pick 106 of round 4 in the 2023 draft class. He scored a 9.83 #RAS out of a possible 10.00. This ranked 23 out of 1294 OT from 1987 to 2023. https://t.co/9IqzQvVuDF pic.twitter.com/0w77yoDyC4
— Kent Lee Platte (@MathBomb) April 29, 2023
His traits are what helped him translate to the position because he didn’t start playing on the offensive line until his freshman year of college. In high school, he played quarterback, tight end, and defensive end. He also was a state champion in shot put and javelin while also earning All-State honors in basketball.
Despite not having any experience playing in the trenches, Freeland was a four-year starter at BYU. He played at both tackle spots so he gives the Colts a swing tackle option if Raimann does secure the left tackle spot as most expect. He uses his length to his advantage in his pass blocks and can tie up rushers with his hands.
The length for BYU OT Blake Freeland really popped on this rep. Was also able to play with enough bend to work back inside after the initial rush. Really nice rep. pic.twitter.com/B3Axt1eclg
— Ryan Roberts (@RiseNDraft) February 1, 2023
You can see his footwork in open space and does a very well job at climbing to the second level to secure rushing lanes for his backs.
Blake Freeland is a LT that will be at the Senior Bowl. Larger than Rams typically draft as he is 6’8. Still, with his size, he’s gets to the second level and has quick feet. pic.twitter.com/u8iDzDBqUx
— Blaine Grisak (@bgrisakTST) January 26, 2023
The biggest thing that he will have to work on is his technique playing the position. Which will come with time playing the position since he is still relatively new to it. He can play with a high pad level which doesn’t help him win with leverage. Freeland can also have his struggles with edge rushers that bring a variety of moves.
Overall, Indianapolis lands an athletic tackle that has the tools to develop into a quality starter at either tackle spots. His addition also gives some competition in training camp for the left tackle spot and a future option at right tackle with Braden Smith only having two years left on his deal after the 2023 season.