College: San Diego State
Position: Offensive Guard
Height/Weight: 6’4″/319 pounds
College Stats: Four-year starter, 2016 All-American, 2-time First Team All-MWC
Nico Siragusa was probably the most hidden of the stars at San Diego State for the last two years, however he may have been more vital to SDSU than Donnel Pumphrey. I’ll take the speculation one step further: if Siragusa wasn’t as stellar as he was, Pumphrey might not have even cracked Top-10 in NCAA all-time career yards.
Siragusa has a low center of gravity, which is imperative for any blocker. As a result of that, he’s able to adjust his position better when pulling off his man, or often times when necessary, become an excellent drive blocker up front. It’s that drive blocking that allowed Pumphrey to sneak through the left side so often.
Siragusa has also had great longevity: he started the last 41 games of his career, and was a constant workhorse, hardly was injured. According to the NFL scouting report, Siragusa has no issues in the locker room and was well-liked by coaches and teammates. Often times, this is a hidden measure for a player to see time or more regularly, stay on one team.
For a guard, he was often huffing and puffing after each play. This winded appearance might keep some teams away from drafting him, or even if they do, he might not see significant playing time anytime soon. Another thing that might keep Siragusa from the higher levels of the draft, was the lack of pass protection shown throughout his career. This is not solely his fault, and to run-heavy NFL teams, it should not really matter, however that small caveat might prevent him from being drafted on Friday.
Siragusa has a lot of upside to him, and for teams that need a strong run-protection guard, he’s going to be a great mid-round pick. Here’s a side note: Siragusa is a San Diego-bred player, through and through: landing with the Chargers would have been a dream…if the Chargers had stayed in San Diego. Still though, the Chargers need a guard and Siragusa might be a good fit, if Los Angeles decides to focus more on the run game and less on Phillip Rivers heroic antics. Other potential landing spots: San Francisco (after they figure out their QB situation) and Jacksonville with possible Friday picks, or if Siragusa goes on Saturday, he could fit with the Vikings or the Rams.
Overall, I see Siragusa going to the LA Chargers in the 4th Round with the 113th pick.