2014 NFL Draft: OT/OG Zack Martin Selected By Dallas Cowboys

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Zack Martin, OT/OG – Notre Dame, 6’4”, 308 LBS

Drafted Round 1, Pick 16 (Dallas)

Combine Results: 29 Reps Bench Press | 28.0″ Vertical Jump | 106″ Broad Jump

  • Tied for 11th in the bench press and the broad jump
  • Tied for 14th in the vertical jump
  • Did not run the 40-yard dash due to a tight hamstring 

Accolades:

  • 2013 Pinstripe Bowl MVP
  • Named team captain for the second time in 2013 (18th player in school history)
  • Set the school record by making his 51st career start in the game at Stanford (holds record for consecutive starts as well)
  • Moved into third place on Notre Dame’s chart for most career wins as a starter (36) with the team’s victory over BYU 

NFL Impact: The question regarding Zack Martin as he goes to the NFL level is whether he fits in as a tackle (which he played in college) or as a guard. Scouts and teams are pretty split on this issue, but, one thing is for sure, he is a first round talent. My personal opinion on the matter is that he falls into the guard mold. His height and arm length (32 7/8′) is not long enough to be a prototypical left tackle in the NFL. I see him as a guard to start and maybe could move out to tackle if an injury takes down the starter.

On the field and in the locker room, Martin is a pure leader. He was a two time captain with the Irish and four year starter that is reportedly a guy that is a vocal leader that holds teammates accountable for their actions. He is also a guy that works at perfecting his craft on the field and someone that will put in the hours to become the best he can be. He is a tough guy that holds his blocks until the whistle and will finish the defender with a takedown to the ground. His awareness is some of the best I have seen on tape. Watching his highlights and games over the years, he is rarely beaten, even by the best pass rushers across from him. He is rarely out of position and is aware of pre-snap adjustments that need to be made in order to execute the play. He picks up stunts and blitzes well in both the run and pass game. 

Overall, Martin’s blocking is solid in technique and there are not many holes in his game. In the pass game, he is quick to get into position and is good at getting inside position to push the pass rusher outside. He is good at keeping his position throughout the play and uses his quick hands to keep rushers in check. He does struggle with pass rushers that are longer (a reason he should be a guard in the NFL). For the run game, he has good power to push off the line and get movement up the field. He is great with his angles and positioning. He struggles with blocking linebackers consistently. 

The question for Martin is where he plays. If he is a tackle, he will struggle due to his measurables, but has a ton of experience to draw from. If he moves to guard, he fits better, but is a raw prospect at that position.

Fantasy Impact: Martin will have an impact right away. He is a plug and play guy that will fit in and provide a solid blocker in both the pass and run game. I just did not see him as a need right now for the Cowboys (they need defensive help badly).  Fantasy wise, Martin will plug in at the guard position and help keep Tony Romo upright and help the running attack develop as a much needed complement to Romo throwing the ball over and over and over.  He will help DeMarco Murray’s numbers slightly this season.

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Agree or disagree?