Photo of D.J. Fluker
Grade
85.5 ?
  • 5.31 SEC
    Top Performer
  • 21 REPS
    Top Performer
  • 6'5" Height
  • 36 3/4" Arm Length
  • 339LBS. Weight
  • 10 1/2" Hands

Overview

Fluker’s been through his share of adversity in recent years. His family was displaced by Hurricane Katrina in 2005, attended three different high schools due to family issues, and then had his apartment ripped apart by the tornado that swept through Tuscaloosa in April 2011. So even though Fluker did not block for star running backs Mark Ingram or Trent Richardson in 2012 (although Eddie Lacy and T.J. Yeldon aren't half bad), don’t expect him to back down from any challenges coming his way during his NFL career.



He was a consensus high school All-American despite his changes of venue. Fluker redshirted his first season with the team in 2009, watching Alabama win their first BCS title under head coach Nick Saban. Saban and his staff didn’t waste any time getting Fluker on the field the following year, starting him at right tackle in the 2010 season opener. An injured groin cost him four starts and three games that year, but SEC coaches saw enough in his nine starts to put him on the Freshman All-SEC team. He stayed healthy in his sophomore year, starting all 13 games at right tackle while the team won its second BCS title in three years. As a junior, Fluker once again started all 14 games at right tackle, totaling 36 during his collegiate career.

Analysis

Strengths

Tall, long, thick right tackle prospect with huge hands and a solid (not sloppy) build. That pure size gives him the power to collapse the edge to create running lanes. Defensive ends must be very quick off the snap to beat him on their initial pass rush move because of his length and hustle. Has improved his anchor against bull-rushes, wide base and length make him tough to move. Flashes footwork to reach linebackers at the second level, who can’t separate from him once he locks on. Shows some bend for his size in his stance, can get low to cut-block on quick passes and in short-yardage situations.

Weaknesses

Gives up too many secondary rushes, lacks recovery speed to stay in front of his man if the quarterback holds onto the ball. Must get his hands up more quickly to sustain blocks, both in pass protection and in the run game. Quicker players in space can avoid him if they see him coming. Loses his balance regularly when overextending towards his target, often ending up on the ground.

NFL Comparison

Phil Loadholt

Bottom Line

Though not as dominant or purely athletic as the Tide’s last mammoth pro tackle prospect, Andre Smith, Fluker has the girth, length, and respectable movement skills to become a top-notch starting right tackle. His struggles were apparent against Western Kentucky, but when Fluker can get his hands on the pass rusher in a balanced position, his opposition has no chance of winning the individual battle.
C
Grade Title
9.00-10 Once-in-lifetime player
8.00-8.99 Perennial All-Pro
7.50-7.99 Future All-Pro
7.00-7.49 Pro Bowl-caliber player
6.50-6.99 Chance to become Pro Bowl-caliber player
6.00-6.49 Should become instant starter
5.50-5.99 Chance to become NFL starter
5.20-5.49 NFL backup or special teams potential
5.01-5.19 Better-than-average chance to make NFL roster
5.00 50-50 Chance to make NFL roster
4.75-4.99 Should be in an NFL training camp
4.50-4.74 Chance to be in an NFL training camp
No Grade Likely needs time in developmental league.
NFL News
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