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2015 NFL Draft Prospect You Need To Know: Pac-12

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Stanford tackle Andrus Peat (70) could distinguish himself as the top offensive lineman prospect in the country. Photo by David Madison/Getty Images.
Stanford tackle Andrus Peat (70) could distinguish himself as the top offensive lineman prospect in the country. Photo by David Madison/Getty Images.

Late in the first quarter of the 100th Rose Bowl game, Stanford faced a 3rd and 11 on Michigan State’s 24-yard line. The call was an inside pitch to Anthony Wilkerson, who didn’t manage to pick up the first down, though the Cardinal would come away with a field goal and a 10-0 lead.

There were two dozen plays that had a greater impact on the eventual outcome of the game (a 24-20 Spartans win). But there’s something that occurred on that play that wasn’t mentioned in the game broadcast and likely went unnoticed by everyone other than Mike Bloomgren, Stanford’s offensive coordinator and offensive line coach.

Andrus Peat, the Cardinal’s sophomore left tackle, did something you rarely see. He got himself in position to block two different defenders in two different places in stunningly quick succession.

One MSU defender was lined up directly across from Peat, another outside. On the snap, Stanford’s left guard, David Yankey, pulled to lead Wilkerson. That left Peat with two defenders. Peat stood up the guy in front of him – second-team All-America defensive end Shilique Calhoun – and released him for Stanford’s center to come finish him off. Meanwhile, the linebacker to the outside had already gotten around Peat, read the play and was rallying to the ball when Peat pounced.

It was as if Peat pushed off Calhoun to propel himself toward the other defender, it happened so fast. Before he’d taken a second step, Peat positioned himself to block the backer and pushed him off his path of pursuit.

Two guys blocked, in two different spots, in about two seconds.

It’s one thing for an offensive lineman to get his block at the point of attack and then continue on to pick up a second block in the second level of the defense. But to make a play at the line of scrimmage on one guy – especially a guy as talented as Calhoun – and be able to get back and in position to make another block behind the line, that’s something you don’t see. Not from a college sophomore, at any rate.

It’s the kind of play that speaks to what makes scouts excited about Peat’s potential. He’s an explosive athlete, whose hands are as quick as his feet. He shows a powerful punch that can stave off a guy like Calhoun, and there are times where it seems almost foolhardy to try to beat him with a speed rush.

Peat possesses the kind of measurables (6-foot-7, 312 pounds) that scouts love, and it’s easy to see why the Sporting News once considered him the top prospect in the country. Another year’s familiarity with the playbook sets up Peat for a monster season, one that could land him in the top 5 of the 2015 NFL Draft.