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Mike Mayock on Zack Martin: 'He's even better than I thought'

Notre Dame offensive tackle Zack Martin wasn't an unknown commodity to NFL Media draft analyst Mike Mayock heading into practices for the Reese's Senior Bowl.

Mayock serves as the analyst for NBC's telecasts of Notre Dame games and was familiar with the Irish's left tackle. "I had a high opinion of Zack Martin coming in," Mayock said.

But that didn't mean Martin still didn't wow Mayock this week.

"I was really impressed by how good a football player he is," Mayock said on NFL Network on Friday. "He's even better than I thought."

Martin measured 6-foot-4 and 305 pounds during Monday's Senior Bowl weigh-in, and his lack of size and less-than-ideal arm length (32.25 inches) will be issues for some teams, Mayock said. There also is some concern about Martin's position at the next level.

Martin started 52 consecutive games for Notre Dame at tackle, with all but two coming on the left side. Still, his size has led some teams to question whether he can handle the left side in the NFL, and there is some talk he would be better on the right side or even at guard.

"Is he a tackle?" Mayock said. "Is he a right tackle? Is he a guard? My answer ... is he's a football player, and next season he's going to start 16 games for somebody."

Fellow analyst Charles Davis said Martin's talent and versatility is "going to make some team very happy."

Davis said Martin is known as a technician, which oftentimes is a nice way of saying the lineman is a finesse guy rather than being a physical player. But in Martin's case, Davis said, "He's got some nasty to him."

Martin always was known as a physical run-blocker with the Irish, and he gradually improved his pass-protection skills. He is athletic and moves well laterally. Martin, who redshirted as a true freshman at Notre Dame in 2009, earned a degree in management entrepreneurship and played this fall as a grad student.

Mike Huguenin can be reached at mike.huguenin@nfl.com. You also can follow him on Twitter @MikeHuguenin.

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