Offensive Center ~ Aviante Collins ~ Texas Christian Horny Frogs ~ 6042/294
The Gutters are riddled with the Corpses of Teams that were built around so-called "skill" Players ~ teams that delighted their Fantasy FootBall Fans every Year, all the way until January...until The Only Games That Really Matter.
It is then, of course, that the Capacity ~ or lack thereof ~ to Move The Chains and protect the QuarterBack against PlayOff Caliber Defenses rears its ugly head. And another Team built for Fantasy FootBall bites the dust.
This is how I break things down, when I'm evaluating Centers:
Power: Above all: Core Power. Torso Power is important, but Core Power, from the Knees to the Ribs, is absolutely crucial. All the upper body Strength in the world will still fail if you simply can't dig in your Heels. But Core Power enables an Offensive Lineman to project Power in the Running Game and to reject Power in the Passing Game.
Agility: Launch Velocity, Acceleration, and above all: Fluidity or Core Agility. Core Agility is even more essential to sustained good Health ~ and to sustained good FootBall ~ than Core Power. The ability to react with Serpentine smoothness is a tremendous Asset in all Aspects of the Game, and certainly in the Hand to Hand Combat that characterizes Trench Warfare. All the Power in the World goes only so far if you're lurching around like FrankenStein.
Frame: Vertical Leverage, Hands, Arm Length, and WingSpan.
Combat Skills: Horizontal Leverage, Paw Positioning, Paw Persistence, and FootWork.
Processing Speed: How quickly and effectively one Reads & Reacts to the Rapidly Roiling Tactical LandScape!!
Motor: Endurance and Drive: How much Work has been put into Conditioning, and how it manifests itself.
Run Blocking: Applying it all: Power, Agility, Frame, Combat Skills, Processing Speed, and Motor.
Pass Blocking: Power, Agility, Frame, Combat Skills, Processing Speed, and Motor.
Broken down into SubCategories, it'd go something like this:
* Core Power ~ lower body Power. Core Power trumps Torso Power. Tyrannosaurus Rex had exceptional Core Power.
* Torso Power ~ upper Body Power. Important, but not crucial. T Rex had lousy Torso Power...yet was King.
* Anchoring Strength in the Passing Game. The capacity to Stand One's Ground.
* Drive Power in the Running Game. The capacity to drive your man back.
* Fluidity, above all things: Core Agility & Flexibility makes everything possible.
* Launch Velocity ~ Speed into Contact off the Snap.
* Acceleration ~ Short Speed or Quickness.
* Vertical Leverage. Height is crucial, but it's actually better, I believe, to be an Inch shorter than an Inch Taller.
* Hands. The larger the better, generally, but compact is never a bad Attribute in The Trenches.
* Arm Length. Absolutely crucial. He who boasts the longer Arms initiates Combat.
* WingSpan. Arm Length + Torso Width. A more complete Measurement.
* Lateral Leverage. Angles. Getting Square or better with the Target.
* Paw Positioning ~ It's all about Angles & Leverage.
* Paw Persistence ~ RPMs: Activity & Persistence.
* FootWork ~ RPMs: Activity & Persistence.
* Reading & Reacting to Defensive Schemes & Stunts quickly and effectively.
* Field Vision: Finding Targets & approaching them effectively.
* Power ~ Drive Power to project Power in the Running Game.
* Agility ~ especially Acceleration DownField or to the Flank.
* Frame ~ especially Vertical Leverage.
* Combat Skills.
* Processing Speed.
* Power ~ Anchoring Strength to reject Power in the Passing Game.
* Agility ~ especially Fluidity to Mirror the Pass Rusher.
* Frame ~ especially WingSpan.
* Combat Skills.
* Processing Speed.
Power: Horrible, but with adequate Potential if he transitions from Offensive Tackle to a much more advantageous Role at Center. Playing Tackle with a WingSpan that's perfectly adequate for Center but horribly short for playing the Edge, Collins routinely leaned and lunged to compensate, thus dramatically dissipating his Functional Power. But if he joins a Team wise enough to move'm to Center and retrain'm to play centered ~ Haw ~ he might improve enough to pass.
Agility: Phenomenal. Tremendous Launch Velocity, impressive Fluidity, and sensational Acceleration and Speed.
Frame: Mediocre. The Right Height for Offensive Guard and arguably a bit short to play Offensive Tackle, but taller than optimal for Vertical Leverage to play Center, which is, nevertheless, his best Fit. Adequate WingSpan.
Combat Skills: Horrible, yet again with Potential, perhaps considerable Potential. Collins developed Bad Habits with both Lateral Leverage and Paw Positioning, trying to compensate for a WingSpan insufficient for playing Offensive Tackle, yet his Persistence is outstanding, and that and his excellent FootWork suggest to me that if he transitions to the more congested Trench Interior, where he doesn't have Responsibility for the Sprawling Swath of Ground that an Offensive Tackle does, he'll be able to play, again, more centered, and thus able to develop far better Blocking Habits.
Processing Speed: Effective. Generally Reads & Reacts with sufficient Speed and Efficacy.
Motor: Outstanding. Tremendous Intensity and extraordinary Stamina.
Run Blocking: This is all Projection, of course, but I'm gonna go with Horrible on a Power Scheme Team and competitive with phenomenal Potential for a Zone Scheme Team. Collins has enormous Work to do, but if he can be successfully retrained as a Center, his currently horrible Power and Combat Skills could improve considerably ~ to decent and excellent, respectively. And should his Field Vision, too, improve, he's got the Speed to become extraordinary.
Pass Blocking: Projection as a Center? Competitive and with exceptional Potential. His Fluidity isn't anywhere near as dynamic as his Speed, but it's impressive, and his Launch Velocity is tremendous. He's got a lot of Work to do, but should he successfully develop the rest of his Game at a far more natural Position, he could excel.
Basing my Scouting Reports, however, on where Prospects ought to be deployed, as I do, I will proceed as such...
As I see it, Aviante Collins is a classic High Risk/High Reward Prospect.
To maximize his ~ and therefore his Team's ~ Chances of Success, it'd be necessary to convert'm to Center. And that'd of course entail intensive Time and Training ~ retraining ~ with the very real Chance of Failure, because there is no Guarantee that he'll be able to break the Bad Habits that took Years to develop, playing out of Position.
And there's also the Power Deficiency, which he may but possibly might not overcome.
On the other hand, we're talking about absolutely sensational Speed, a tremendous Motor, and what appears to be a sharp Mind. His Frame is perfectly fine for Center, and if his Team is wise enough to move'm there and retrain the Lad successfully, the PayOff could be an exceptional Pass Blocker and a magnficent Run Blocker.
Grateful Thanks, as always, for the crucial Work done by the folks at Draft BreakDown!
This is not is even remotely a Complaint, mind you, but rather a Warning: Caveat Emptor!!