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NFL Draft Prospect Preview - Jack Nelson

by J.T. Toth


Photo courtesy of BadgersExtra.


At Draft 412, the NFL draft talk never ends. We will keep you ready for the next set of gridiron stars—from today and all the way until draft night 2024. We will bring you mock drafts, player profiles, individual team needs, and everything else you may need related to the 2024 NFL Draft.


Today’s Spotlight - Wisconsin, Tackle, Jack Nelson


Name- Jack Nelson

Pos- Tackle

Team- Wisconsin

HT/WT- 6’7” 315 lbs.

Born- N/A

Home – Stoughton, WI


Jack Nelson was a four-star recruit by 247Sports, ESPN and Rivals and was awarded the Joe Thomas Award as the state’s best offensive lineman and 2nd best overall prospect in the state of Wisconsin. Despite numerous offers, Nelson decided to stay home and play for the Badgers.


Nelson appeared in one game as a freshman in 2020 and was redshirted. In 2021, he started all 13 games at right guard and helped pave the way for the No. 2 rushing attack in the Big 10.


Last season, Nelson started all 12 games at left tackle and led the Badgers with a PFF pass blocking rating of 83.1. He was named All-Big 10 honorable mention in both 2021 and 2022.


Nelson’s height and length compliment his efficient mechanics and strong base to attack opponents. He has the athleticism to pull effectively and get to the second level, and excels at protecting the outside, keeping pass rushers from turning the edge. He uses his active hands to lock onto defenders trying to get around him. Nelson also brings positional versatility as he has played guard in the past.


On the downside, Nelson has issues against faster, stronger defenders who come via a bullrush. Players have more success going through him than trying to get around him. He forgets to use his feet at times and is stuck battling with just his hands and upper body. Nelson is much better in pass blocking than he is at run blocking, he becomes off balance at times, trying to push defenders in the run game. He can and needs to add weight to his 6’7” frame.


A good comparison to Jack Nelson in 2016 #1 draft pick Taylor Decker out of Ohio State. Decker may be a tad bit stronger, and Nelson a tad bit more athletic, but both play the same style of tackle. Both excel at pass blocking and struggle in the ground game.



Strengths


  • Size

  • Hands

  • Protecting the edge

  • Versatility


Weaknesses


  • Run blocking

  • Footwork

  • Bull rush

  • Sustaining blocks


Final Analysis


Jack Nelson has the prototypical NFL build for a left tackle, and he can still add 15-20 lbs. to his frame. He will need to work out some kinks in his run blocking but should be a 2nd day pick.


Draft 412 Draft Projection- Round 3


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