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The NFL has become accustomed to seeing blue-chip prospects at every position coming out of Tuscaloosa, and their top talent in next year’s draft class appears to be offensive tackle Evan Neal.
Widely regarded as the top prospect in the nation at his position, Neal is a massive blocker who could end up being a top-five selection in the 2022 NFL draft.
NFL Network’s Daniel Jeremiah recently broke down Neal’s game in an early scouting report, and he had some trouble finding a modern comparison for what the Crimson Tide prospect brings to the table, eventually landing on former Chargers tackle Marcus McNeill:
I couldn’t find a more current comp for Neal. I see some similarities to Orlando Brown, but Neal is a little quicker while Brown plays with better balance and patience. McNeill was an enormous tackle coming out of Auburn. He wasn’t an ideal bender, but he had foot quickness and understood how to use his long arms to keep defenders off his chest. He had a very solid six-year run as a left tackle in San Diego, making a pair of Pro Bowls for the Chargers. I see Neal more as a right tackle, but some teams might give him a shot on the left side.
Neal has the size, athleticism and physicality to be a dominant blocker on either side of the line, and a strong 2021 campaign could lock him in as the top player at his position in next year’s draft class.