ESPN has Michigan football player as one of the steals of 2023 NFL draft
When you’re the engine of the best offensive line in the country in college football, then you’re likely to hear your name called early in the NFL draft. Yet, the two outgoing Michigan football offensive linemen, both had to wait until day three of the 2023 NFL draft, oddly enough.
ESPN’s Chris Low isn’t having it when it comes to one of those two Wolverine offensive linemen.
In a roundtable discussing how certain teams and players fared in this past weekend’s grand offseason event, various writers asked themselves who the biggest steal of the 2023 NFL draft was, and Low waxed poetic about Michigan center Olu Oluwatimi, the winner of last year’s Rimington and Outland trophies.
Centers are typically drafted lower than they should be, but seeing Michigan‘s Olusegun Oluwatimi slip to the fifth round was surprising — but great news for the Seahawks that they could wait that long to get their center of the future. The 6-3, 310-pound Oluwatimi will play 10 years in the NFL and be a fixture in the middle of that Seattle offensive line. He played on college football’s best offensive line last season and won the Outland Trophy as the top interior lineman in college football and the Rimington Award as the top center. He has played in three different systems (Air Force, Virginia and Michigan) and will develop rapidly into a top-tier NFL center.
Oluwatimi was selected No. 154 overall in the fifth-round. While that does seem low, there were multiple seven-round mock drafts circulating in the days leading up to the draft that didn’t even have him selected at all. Whether that was because the writers putting together the mock draft had forgotten about him or legitimately didn’t believe he was good enough to make the cut is unknown.
It’s a good thing he did get selected and Low is likely right that he’ll have a long, productive NFL career. But it’s still a shame that he’s being spoken of as a high-value player for the Seahawks, and less because of him being able to cash in on his own ability and going higher in the draft.
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