Prospects

Prospects
Photo of T.J. Lang
T.J. Lang (OT)
Height: 6'4"
Weight: 316
Conference: Mid-American
Hometown: Ferndale, MI
High School: Birmingham Brother Rice
Featured Prospects
Selected by: Green Bay Packers
Round: 4
Pick (Overall): 9 (109)
Discuss
Pick Analysis: Lang elevated his play each and every year. He came into last season as a prospect who was not really highly regarded. He's got good punch and is a combative, physical player. His challenge may come in playing against speedy defensive linemen. He's going to add strength and zone-blocking ability to the Packers' offensive line.
  1. Overview
  2. Analysis
Overview

Originally recruited as a defensive lineman, Lang made a remarkable transformation over the last three years. Despite coming into his own as a tackle in 2008, many professional scouts feel that his drive-blocking ability, reach and quick hand placement could see him shift inside to guard or center.


Lang started 36 consecutive games, including his last 26, at left tackle. He registered 169 knock-downs and 21 touchdown-resulting blocks during his junior and senior campaigns. He had 16 tackles (eight solo) and blocked two kicks during his 43-game career at EMU.


Lang began his prep career at Lakeland High School, lettering in both football and baseball as a sophomore. He transferred to Brother Rice High as a junior, where he helped the team to the state finals and was named the squad's Most Improved Lineman.


As a senior, Lang started on both lines. He earned All-State Division II first-team honors and was ranked 33rd on the Fab 50 list of the Detroit Free Press, adding All-North accolades from that news service. He was named his team's Lombardi Award winner as the Most Outstanding Lineman and was nominated for the Gatorade Player of the Year award in the state of Michigan.


Lang recorded 93 tackles (59 solo) with 8.5 quarterback sacks and one fumble recovery, making the Associated Press All-State Division II squad as a high school senior. He also won the Defensive Line award at the University of Michigan 2004 summer camp.


In 2005, Lang was one of seven true freshmen to letter at Eastern Michigan. He appeared in all 11 games, seeing action in seven contests on defense while starting the season opener vs. Cincinnati at left defensive tackle. He finished the season with 11 tackles (four solo), as he assisted on a stop behind the line of scrimmage and blocked a kick vs. Western Michigan.


As a sophomore, Lang switched to the offensive line, starting 10 contests at right tackle and two more on the left side. He also switched from jersey #93 that he wore in 2005 to #50, which he'd wear for the rest of his career. He posted 74 knockdowns with seven touchdown-resulting blocks and was named Player of the Game vs. Louisiana-Lafayette. He also collected three tackles (two solos).


Lang started all 12 games at left tackle in 2007, delivering 83 knockdowns and 10 touchdown-resulting blocks. He also blocked a kick and recorded a solo tackle. The team averaged 337.5 yards in total offense as the front wall ranked second in the Mid-American Conference, allowing just 1.42 quarterback sacks per game, the 24th-best figure in the nation.


As a senior, Lang again manned the left tackle slot in all 12 games, garnering All-Mid American Conference recognition. He registered 11 touchdown-resulting blocks to go with 86 knockdowns, as he also came up with a solo tackle, but turned the ball over after handling a reception for a 4-yard loss. The Eagles relied on him protecting the blind side, as EMU ranked 20th nationally in passing, averaging 269.33 yards per game.


High School

Graduated from Brother Rice (Birmingham, Mich.) High School, playing football as a junior and senior for head coach Al Fracassa...As a senior, Lang started on both lines, earning All-State Division II first-team honors and was ranked 33rd on the Fab 50 list of the Detroit Free Press, adding All-North accolades from that news service...Named his team's Lombardi Award winner as the Most Outstanding Lineman and was nominated for the Gatorade Player of the Year award in the state of Michigan...In his final prep campaign, Lang recorded 93 tackles (59 solo) with 8.5 quarterback sacks and one fumble recovery, making the Associated Press All-State Division II squad, helping the team to the state finals and was named the squad's Most Improved Lineman...Also won the Defensive Line award at the University of Michigan 2004 summer camp...Began his prep career at Lake-land High School, lettering in both football and baseball as a sophomore.


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Analysis

Positives: Good height with a thick, strong body. Absolute mauler who works hard every play. Versatile enough to start at all three interior OL spots. Gets down quickly and is effective on cut blocks. Strong enough to stone and pancake his opponent. Fires out of his stance and uses his hands well on run plays, gets inside his man's jersey and doesn't let go. Punches and extends his arms to hold off defenders in pass protection. Good enough feet to get to linebackers, pull and trap. Aware enough to help the tackle and center on the same play. Hustles downfield on screens and reverses to throw the late block.


Negatives: Must learn to play inside in the NFL because he lacks the athleticism, arm length and hand size to be more than a short-term solution outside. Leans into his man, enabling the tackle to rip him off or pull him forward on a second effort. Tries to grab opponent's jersey on most every play instead of punching and resetting, which will be a problem against quicker defensive tackles.


Compares To: KRIS DIELMAN, San Diego -- Lang is a former defensive lineman and a relative neophyte as an offensive lineman coming out of college. He's made steady progress thanks to weight-room dedication. With his pass protection skills, he could bring better value as an interior lineman while his body fills out. In a zone blocking scheme, he could find a home at guard. With his hand quickness, he could also be used as a center late in his career.


Injury Report

No major injuries reported.


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