Idaho offensive tackle Mike Iupati, considered the top offensive guard prospect in the draft, looked every bit the part on Thursday as offensive linemen talked to reporters. Although he’s considered a guard, at 6-foot-5, 331 pounds with 35-inch arm length, in a thick, muscle-filled frame, Iupati is considered a possibility to move out to tackle in the NFL
Iupati talked about his versatility, with an ability to play both guard and tackle. But with some gentle coaxing, Iupati beamed when asked about his first love in football -- playing defense. He even saw some time on the defensive side of the ball for the Vandals on goal-line situations.
“I really love defense,” Iupati said. “That’s my favorite passion of the game of football, because I know I’m very physical. I can hold up two gaps, take on double teams and stuff like that. I always tried to push my coach to make me a defensive player because I know I’m very good at it, but they really like me on offense and they need me on the offensive line.”
Iupati said he’s been working out individually in Southern California with Hall of Fame offensive tackle Jackie Slater on playing offensive guard and tackle. Iupati said the Seahawks talked to him during a meet and greet on Wednesday.
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NFLDraftScout.com senior analyst Rob Rangs talks about the possibility of Iupati playing defensive tackle at the next level in this post on his scouting combine blog.
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