We start our weekly series about possible Ravens draft prospects. Today we take a look at first round prospect offensive tackle Zack Martin from Notre Dame. Martin is often mocked to the Ravens at their 17th overall pick in the first round and would fit a need for a right tackle.
Martin, at 6-foot-4 308 pounds, is an undersized tackle that lacks the ideal arm length to keep rushers on the outside of his frame. However his smaller frame gives him ideal quickness to run a zone blocking scheme. He also shows good football intelligence and instincts on who and when to block that gives him leverage on the outside against speed rushers. Against a bull rusher, Martin would have some problems getting pushed into the backfield as he sometimes allows a pass rusher's hands to get inside. He does a very good job of moving laterally and scraping while maintaining good blocking form which a zone blocking scheme requires of tackles.
Martin's smaller frame and lack of ideal strength leaves him at a disadvantage when run blocking. He doesn't show road grader tendencies and could use to bulk up slightly and gain a mean streak when engaging. Martin does block to the whistle and seeks out players to block. He frequently had a tight end lined up next to him on running plays and didn't have a lot of runs to the outside to showcase ability to turn guys inside. On runs to the left guard and left tackle, he would take his player to the ground in a way that would see penalties at the pro level.
Martin is a two time captain with a great work ethic. A blue collar player and person that plays 'like a Raven'. A highly respected player that played all 52 games during his 4 year stint (he was red-shirted as a freshman). A high character person that would be welcome in the locker room and could potentially be a leader as he gets older.
Martin is a good prospect that wouldn't excel at the left tackle position but would do well at the right tackle spot in the zone blocking scheme that the Ravens are looking to run. He looks to be at the same level, if not slightly higher than former Ravens right tackle Michael Oher in overall ability. If he could add some size and strength, he could potentially move inside if necessary and perform well. A very clean technique player and a very clean personality that would see his name out of the papers. He doesn't have the greatest upside as a player but is ultimately reliable and consistent in his play.
The Ravens would be happy to have the right tackle spot squared away for 5 years at a very low price. He would help solidify a line that has had some shake ups over the past few years.