NFL Draft Prospect Breakdown: Will Hernandez

Other Breakdowns

Quenton Nelson – 93/100
Saquon Barkley
 – 92/100
Tremaine Edmunds – 89/100
Bradley Chubb – 89/100
Derwin James – 88/100
Roquan Smith – 87/100
Minkah Fitzpatrick – 87/100
Harold Landry – 85/100
Rashaan Evans – 84/100
Baker Mayfield – 84/100
Sam Darnold – 83/100
Josh Rosen – 83/100
Lamar Jackson – 82/100
Marcus Davenport – 82/100
Calvin Ridley – 81/100
Josh Allen – 77/100
Leighton Vander Esch – 77/100

Awards and Accolades

Class: Redshirt Senior
Height: 6’2″
Weight: 327 lbs
Awards & Accolades: Second Team All-American (2017), and First Team C-USA (2017)

There are not very many reliable stats for offensive lineman, it really is up to the evaluator to watch the tape, but in terms of measurables, you can tell that Will Hernandez is one big boy. Hernandez racked up 37 reps on the bench press, coming in the 98th percentile, and despite his 327-pound frame, his 5.15 40-yard dash time came in the 71st percentile, which is respectable. His arm length of 35 1/4 inches comes in the 90th percentile.

For this NFL Draft prospect breakdown, I rewatched Hernandez’s games against Oklahoma, to see how he played against a power level team, as well as Army, to see more of what it was like for him week in and week out. As I said in my Marcus Davenport breakdown, judging a player and then trying to take into account who they did it against is one of the hardest things to do when grading a prospect, although I should mention that Army’s defense (80th) actually ranks higher than Oklahoma’s (101st) in Bill Connely’s S&P+ defensive rankings

Pros

Aggressive
Mean streak
Blocks through the whistle
Very agile for size
Pulls tight to the line
Frustrates opposition
Good feet
Can’t be moved

Cons

Very raw
Short
Not great hand technique
Sometimes plays standing straight up
Ocassionly plays with a wide base

Grades

Anchoring – 9.5/10
Grip – 10/10
Awareness – 7.5/10
Mobility – 6.5/10
Run Blocking – 9.5/10

Scheme Fits

Gap – 9/10
Zone – 6/10

Overall Grade: 84/100

A reminder, this where I think he should go, not where he will go, these rankings also DO NOT take into account positional importance

90+ Superstar
85+ Elite Player (Top Ten)
80+ First Round Talent
77+ Second Round Talent
74+ Third Round Talent
66+ Third Day Talent (Rounds 4-7)

10/10 Rating – Best in the class or close to it
7.5/10 Rating – Average
5/10 Rating – Poor

I always like to mention that my grading does not take into account positional importance, so a quarterback in the low 80s will be drafted higher than a guard in the mid-80s. Now that I have that out of the way, Will Hernandez is awesome. He packs almost the same weight as Quenton Nelson despite being three inches shorter than him, and that is while on the UTEP meal plan, he should bulk up even further under an NFL program. In terms of physicality, Will is a beast, but when you look at the tape Hernandez is raw, very raw. His technique is not great, he often plays with his hands outside and his knees not bent, and he just relies on his pure power to get him through games. That is not a good thing, but you can’t argue, it worked for him. Those technique issues are things that I would hope will be fixed with NFL coaching, but with a player as raw and unproven as Hernandez, it’s hard to tell.

Will Hernandez will be a borderline top ten player on my big board, and will probably be even higher on my list of prospect breakdowns because I don’t have time to do every single player. You can’t look past the fact that he plays guard, and so while I think he is a top fifteen talent, when you take into account positional importance, it is more likely he drops to the low 20’s, with the Cincinnati Bengals at 21 a very likely landing spot.

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