Iowa OL Tyler Linderbaum Looks Like a Top 10 NFL Draft Prospect

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If there is one thing about the Big Ten, especially the Big Ten West, it is a ground-and-pound, run-first kinda league/division. In order to establish and then maintain this approach, you’re going to need big overpowering offensive linemen, and plenty of them.

Iowa center Tyler Linderbaum, an all league pick last season, is one of the overall best in the entire league. The 6-3, 290 pound junior is also, hands down, the Big Ten lineman with the highest NFL Draft stock, by far.

To see where we have Tyler Linderbaum in our latest NFL mock draft go here.

The Solon, Iowa native is definitely a top ten overall kind of talent, as he brings a lot of versatility to the table. He can play any of the three interior offensive line positions, and that will serve him well to rise up the draft boards.

Said Northwestern coach Pat Fitzgerald, whose side lost to Tyler Linderbaum and the Hawkeyes on the first weekend in November: “He’s not a good player, he’s a great player, with freakish athleticism (on his ability to reach the 3-technique from the center position) and his tenacity to finish.”

The Hawkeyes running game averaged just under five yards a carry, on their way to almost 200 yards on the ground. Linderbaum was a huge part of that, leading the way in the middle of the park.

“So impressed by him, our plan was to throw as many bodies out there as we could,” Fitzgerald added.

Joe Spivak, NU nose tackle and team leader said he has “nothing but respect” for Tyler Lindenbaum, and that he’s a “hell of a player.” Spivak, like Linderbaum has a wrestling background, and he noted how much that shows in his game.

“I think everybody has him top ten overall…his hips, his leverage, plays the way it should be played.”

Fitzgerald also mentioned the wrestling background and influence in his answer.

Paul M. Banks is the owner/manager of The Bank (TheSportsBank.Net) and author of “Transatlantic Passage: How the English Premier League Redefined Soccer in America,” as well as “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry.”

He has regularly appeared in WGNSports Illustrated and the Chicago Tribune, and co-hosts the After Extra Time podcastFollow him on Twitter and Instagram

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