2020 Preseason All-American Projections: Offensive Tackles



By Charlie Campbell
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Heading into the 2020 college football season WalterFootball.com will debut our projections for the nation’s leaders during the fall. The All-American teams always have some surprises and the stars of next fall could be the headlining players next April in the 2021 NFL Draft.

First-Team Offensive Tackles:

Penei Sewell, Oregon

The 6-foot-6, 325-pound Sewell had a dominant sophomore season as the blind-side protector for Justin Herbert. For his excellent season, Sewell won the Outland Trophy and was the Pac-12 co-offensive player of the year. Sewell was a shutdown pass protector not allowing a sack in over 926 snaps as a sophomore. He only was credited with allowing seven pressures and two hits all season.

Last year was his second straight good season, and Sewell should continue to dominate as a junior. Possessing good size, length and athleticism, Sewell has a good skill set that could end up making him one of the top prospects for the 2021 NFL Draft. It would be surprising if he didn’t play well and earn a lot of postseason honors, like All-American status.



Alex Leatherwood, Alabama

Leatherwood played well for Alabama in 2019, showing he has a first-round skill set of size, quickness and athleticism. Taking on LSU, Leatherwood showed that he still needs some development in his technique, with Tigers edge rusher K’Lavon Chaisson giving Leatherwood some problems. Leatherwood was wise return to school to improve before going pro, but he has a lot of upside and the skill set to be special.

The 6-foot-6, 322-pounder could be much better as a senior after having a year of experience starting at left tackle. Leatherwood previously played guard for the Crimson Tide, but after Jonah Williams left for the NFL, the coaches moved Leatherwood to left tackle. Having a year under his belt playing on the edge in the SEC could help elevate Leatherwood as a senior, and another year working with the Alabama coaches will definitely help him to be a better player in 2020.



Second-Team Offensive Tackles:

Walker Little, Stanford

Little was impressive as a freshman starter at left tackle for Stanford in 2017. He did an effective job in run blocking and helped Bryce Love to a huge season. Little was solid as a sophomore and showed an improved ability to protect the passer doing a respectable job in keeping pressure off of quarterback K.J. Costello. His junior year went off the rails as Little suffered a season-ending injury in the season opener. Little wisely returned for his senior year.

At the point of attack, Little is strong and does a nice job of sustaining blocks. He has good length to him with a developed frame. Stanford has a reputation for tough players at the point of attack, and that should help Little to get a lot of postseason honors if he has another good season in terms of protecting the quarterback.



Sam Cosmi, Texas

Last fall, team sources told me they liked Cosmi and thought he was a better prospect than Connor Williams was at Texas. They felt Cosmi was raw and needing development, but athletically, he was an interesting prospect. Cosmi needs to get stronger for the NFL. Team sources believe he had to go back to school if he wanted to be a secure first-round pick in his draft class, and Cosmi wisely decided to go back to Austin for his senior year.

As a redshirt freshman, Cosmi earned a starting spot at right tackle for the Longhorns and had an impressive debut. He did a good job in pass protection, showing some length and athleticism on the edge. For the NFL, it would help Cosmi to get stronger, but as a young player, he probably will add weight and strength as he ages and gains more experience. Cosmi has a lot of upside, and he could be in store for a big senior year due to taking advantage of the weak Big XII defenses.



Third-Team Offensive Tackles:

Jalen Mayfield, Michigan

Ohio State defensive end Chase Young dominated college football in 2019, destroying opponents on a weekly basis to lead the nation with 16.5 sacks. Perhaps the only offensive linemen who was truly impressive versus Young was Michigan’s Jalen Mayfield. In plenty of one-on-one matchups, Mayfield got the better of Young, and there were other plays on which Young had Mayfield on the ropes but the young Wolverine was able to recover in time to keep Young from making his typical game-changing play. It was a breakout performance for the Wolverines right tackle to conclude the regular season.

After being a backup as a true freshman, Mayfield showed improvement throughout his sophomore year, playing better against Young and Ohio State than he did in earlier games, like Penn State for example. It was an impressive debut for Mayfield, and Wolverines head coach Jim Harbaugh has been bullish about Mayfield being even better in 2020. Mayfield (6-5, 319) has plenty of upside and could earn a lot of postseason hours as a junior.



Liam Eichenberg, Notre Dame

Eichenberg was solid, but not overly impressive, for Notre Dame in 2019. He was wise to return for his senior year. However, the 6-foot-6, 305-pounder has a solid skill set with some athleticism to block on the edge. After the starting the past two seasons, Eichenberg has earned a lot of experience and he is capable of playing at a higher level in his final season. He could definitely be a candidate to earn a lot of postseason honors.

Honorable Mentions: Ohio State’s Thayor Munford, Florida’s Stone Forsythe, North Dakota State’s Dillon Radunz, Iowa’s Alaric Jackson, BYU’s Brady Christensen, Washington State’s Abraham Lucas and Texas A&M’s Dan Moore Jr.


2020 Preseason All-American Projections:
QB | RB | WR | TE | OT | G | C | DE | DT | OLB | ILB | CB | S | K/P

2020 Preseason Postseason Award Projections:
Thorpe Award | Biletnikoff Award | Outland Trophy | Rimington Trophy | Mackey Award | O'Brien Award | Doak Walker Award | Jet Award | Walter Camp Award










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