New York Giants 7-round mock draft: Following Joe Schoen, Brian Daboll’s Bills playbook
Round 5, pick No. 173: C Luke Fortner, Kentucky
With it being unknown as to when or IF current center Nick Gates is returning after suffering a gruesome leg injury this season, the NY Giants should look to find a new center in case Gates is not good to go. I believe a good candidate to draft is Luke Fortner out of Kentucky.
Coming in at 6’6, 300 pounds, Luke Fortner had himself a great season at Kentucky this year as both a pass and run blocker.
Using his massive frame and reach, Fortner dominates opposing defenders in the run game, making it easy for running backs to gain easy yards up the middle. Fortner gained a run-blocking grade of 84.7 this season, per, PFF.
However, what could become a big problem for Fortner is his lack of foot movement during pass-blocking snaps. There are far too many times in which Fortner barely moves his feet during pass-blocking snaps, leading to him getting pushed back too easily for a center, while this is not a problem in the run game, it is something that must be fixed if he wishes to have a successful NFL career.
Luke Fortner possesses impressive lateral mobility for his size, being able to get out into the open field quickly to make blocks in the open field.
If Fortner can clean up his footwork in pass-blocking snaps, I believe there is a good chance he can succeed in the NFL, if not at center, then definitely at guard.