Nate Solder, OT, Colorado (Projection: Mid First Round)
The Cowboys have one of the oldest offensive lines in the game and it’s not even one that can really compare to the other aging lines. It hasn’t played up to it’s potential and has been inconsistent to say the least. Nate Solder offers the Cowboys the ability to begin rebuilding that offense line for the future and give Felix, Tashard, and Tony the best chance to be successful in “The House that Jerry Built”
Solder is a physical marvel. He stands at 6-8, 314 lbs. His 40 time is still considerable given his size at 4.89. Solder has been considered dominant as an offensive lineman and has handled pass rushers with relative ease. In one-on-one drills against peers Solder seems to be unbeatable and seemingly immovable. He handles defensive rush moves (swim, bulrush) very well and has quick feet. His agility allows for him to move quickly as a rush blocker as well.
Not much to knock on arguably the top offensive lineman in the draft. Despite his solid intangibles he could still improve on his technique during pass blocking situations. His biggest issue will be how he learns to use his size against smaller defenders who will attempt to out leverage him.
How He fits:
Like I stated earlier, the Cowboys really need to start rebuilding this offensive line and cementing Solder and Free on the outsides will make it much easier. I honestly think that Solder is the best pick the Cowboys could make in the first round even over a CB. That being said, Solder would be in an instant starter and greatly impact the mobility of the offense while affording Romo enough time in the pocket to start making safer decisions. If the Cowboys go with him, they will be going with a perennial pro-bowler who will be wearing Cowboys Blue for his whole career.
Going for Solder will allow the Cowboys to trade down and amass more picks throughout the draft.