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Alabama Football 2015 NFL Draft Profiles: Arie Kouandjio

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Breaking down Alabama offensive guard Arie Koundjio's ability to succeed at the professional level

Kevin Liles-USA TODAY Sports

Arie Kouandjio

Position: Offensive Guard

Age: 22

Height: 6'4" and 3/5

Weight: 310

Arm Length: 34.125 in.

Hand Width: 10.875 in.

Wingspan: 84.375 in.

40-Yard Dash: 5.48s

20-Yard Split: 3.09s

10-Yard Split: 1.84s

Short Shuttle: 5.38s

Three Cone: 8.4s

Bench Press: DNP

Vertical Jump: 25.5 in.

Broad Jump: 8.33 ft.

SPARQ*: 86.8

Z-Score*: -1.3

*Note: These values were calculated by Zach Whitman of Fieldgulls.com and 3sigmaathlete.com. A higher SPARQ score means that player is more athletic. A positive Z-score means that the athlete has above average athleticism for an NFL player at his position, and a negative means that he is below average. If you want a more in depth explanation, here is my previous article.

Strengths

Arie Kouandjio is the older brother of the Bill's 2014 second-round draft pick, Cyrus. Like his younger brother, Arie possesses lengthy and powerful arms. Due to this, he has a strong initial punch at the snap that often surprises defensive linemen and stops them in their tracks. His arm length helps him to be an above-average pass blocker, as he can reach pass rushers who would be out of range for many guards. As a fifth year senior and two-year starter, Arie is very technically sound both in his knowledge of what defenders to block in what schemes, and in his arm technique.

Weaknesses

Before earning a starting job, Kouandjio tore ligaments and had surgery multiple times in both knees over the course of his first three years at Alabama. His knees have always been an issue, and it obviously limited the development of his mobility over his career. He is very stiff below the hips, moves sluggishly, and does not have a strong lower body drive when run blocking. He tends to get outmatched in open space by more limber defenders when being used as a pulling blocker, and struggles to move laterally when pass blocking. He also really struggled in 2014 with pre-snap penalties, but reduced his infractions significantly this year.

Verdict

After a train wreck of a season as starter in 2014, Arie Kouandjio showed leaps and bounds in his improvement for his senior season. He has a powerful upper body and great technique for big man, but knee injuries have really derailed his ability to move well with his lower body. He is an adequate-at-best guard with above average pass-blocking skills, and would fit best in a scheme that does not require much run blocking. CBSsports.com optimistically projects Arie as a 3rd to 4th round pick, but I could see his injury history scaring off teams and dropping as low as the 6th round.