Shows some pop as a run blocker and able to get position as a zone blocker. Shows some leg drive and is able to lock on as a run blocker. Plays with good mean streak and does a good job finishing his blocks. Can get out on the second level and drive linebacker into the dirt. Initiates contact in pass protection. Shows some ability to adjust in space in pass protection and lock onto defender.
Has slow feet and opens up his stance too early. Gets perpendicular with line of scrimmage and struggles against speed. Can get beat with the quick inside move as well. Short-armed player that needs to improve his punch in pass protection. Is too much of a waist bender and gets overextended and can fall flat on his fface. Doesn't get his hands up quickly enough to deliver blow to defender as a run blocker. Gives up ground trying to block laterally and on the move. Struggles to adjust in space when blocking on the second level, and can be slow to hit assignments there.
Thorson is too athletically limited to play tackle and is a much better fit inside at guard or center. He started the past 16 games at Kansas at right tackle, starting previous 8 at left guard. He transferred from Wisconsin after the '08 season because he had already graduated with a business degree after two years there. He spent two years as a reserve center at Wisconsin. Moving back to center probably will help his pro career.
You like his mean streak, and his past as a wrestler shows up on the field. He can be effective in a short area for that reasons which is why he's a much better fit inside at guard or center. His footwork is slow and poor, and his technique is sloppy as well to try and match up with defenders on the edge. He doesn't quite have the hand speed that I want in a center. But he can get better there with development. His value early on is his ability to add depth at both guard and center which should help him stick early on. You like his smarts, graduating from Wisconsin by the end of his redshirt sophomore year, but not sure whether it directly translates on the field. If it does, coupled with his mean streak, he can stick as a reserve at the next level. Down the road, he could even be a decent stopgap starter for a team. But that's not going to happen until his second contract at the earliest. He's a guy that can develop into a decent journeyman reserve, but probably doesn't have enough polish to stick long-term anywhere. But he's too limited an athlete and his arms are too short to really like his chances in a starting lineup. He can wind up being effective stopgap because of his mean streak and smarts, but is the type of player that teams will be constantly trying to upgrade over with bigger, stronger, and more athletic players because his upside is limited.
Thorson can compete as a reserve center and guard here in Atlanta. With his mean streak, he stands a chance here in Atlanta. If he can land a practice squad spot as a rookie, then he has a chance to stick next year as a reserve behind Hawley at center, and his ability to play guard as well makes him more valuable. He's a career backup that could stick long-term if Boudreau likes his mean streak and his academic intelligence translates in the film room.
Thorson is too limited with his upside to merit a draft pick. A team can bring him into camp and see if he can compete for a practice squad spot.
1-poor, 2-weak, 3-above average, 4-very good, 5-elite
Pass Blocking: 2.0
Run Blocking: 2.0
Mean Streak: 4.0
Scouting reports of the centers, guards, and tackles in the 2011 Draft.
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