Dillon Radunz 2021 NFL Draft Scouting Report
Dillon Radunz is the left tackle for North Dakota State Bison, possessing an NFL profile that could see him remain at the position at the next level. We look at Radunz’s 2021 NFL Draft scouting report today and assess whether he truly does project as a future franchise blind side protector.
Dillon Radunz NFL Draft Profile
Dillon Radunz, OT – North Dakota State
Height – 6’5”
Weight – 304lbs
Class – Redshirt Senior
Hometown – Becker, Minnesota
From Becker Senior High School in Minnesota, Radunz played on both offense & defense, as well as representing the school in shot put and being named to the Conference basketball team.
He was initially recruited as a 2-star defensive end and did turn down FBS offers from Missouri and Wyoming but chose to stay closer to home by committing to the North Dakota State Bison. Once on Campus, he was identified as a potential offensive lineman so redshirted his Freshman year and was tasked with adding bulk to his frame.
After adding 21lbs he moved the scales to 287lbs, he was named as starter for the Bison’s 2017 season opener but tore his ACL in the first quarter. Bouncing back the next season fully healed, he was named to 2nd Team MVFC team giving up only 3 sacks all season. 2019 was an even better for Radunz as he was named to the 1st Team All-FCS Team after giving up zero sacks on the way to the Bison once again winning the FCS Championship. During the Covid season, Radunz played in the Central Arkansas showcase game before receiving an invite to the 2021 Senior Bowl.
Radunz often looked like a man amongst boys whilst at North Dakota State against FCS opposition. Approaching 6’6” and 304lbs, he is the prototypical build that teams are looking for in an athletic offensive tackle and used this size to dominate for the Bison. With an arm length of 33 ¼”, above the generally accepted length required for the position, he has the physical tools to play tackle in the NFL.
What stands out on tape is the athleticism that Radunz has in abundance and his proficiency in various pass sets including the deeper drops. He is able to get excellent depth on his kick-slide and uses quick foot speed to mirror deep into the pass set.
Rarely has to flip his hips and go into recovery mode as he stays square to the defender – giving him a greater chance to react and respond to inside counters. Good awareness of blitzes and stunts, even when engaged with a defender he can identify threats of delayed blitzers.
Radunz displays excellent balance when in pass protection and is rarely over his toes or caught lunging helped by his patience with his punch timing. Generally good placement of his hands and was showing signs of improved hand fighting to regain control on the times he did lose control. Also displayed sufficient anchor against FCS opposition, though that is noticeably weaker opposition than what he will face in the NFL.
In the run game, Radunz had the size and strength to dominate and would routinely clear down the line creating massive running lanes. Impressively, not settling for just clearing a lane he would then show good instincts to release to the second level. Staying low and stalking defenders, Radunz is excellent in space and would routinely locate and engage more agile defenders. Using good balance, a wide base and good grip strength, he can sustain blocks comfortably.
Radunz’s effort noticeably jumps off the screen, it was not uncommon to see him sprinting 30 or 40 yards downfield to support the ball carrier which will endear him to fans, teammates, and coaches alike.
He often uses the slingshot technique to take defenders out of the play and to allow him to get downfield in support as quickly as possible. Another trait that bodes well is the awareness of where to position his body to seal the running lane. It would have been easy for him to rely on his power alone to displace defenders but he also positions himself so the defender cannot make a play. When making the leap to the NFL, where he will not be able to easily overpower defenders, this is a pleasing quality to see.
The anchor against bull rushes is a concern as the sample size of his development in this area is limited to one game in 2020 and the Senior Bowl.
He can occasionally play with a high pad level and I want to see quicker response to a regain of control in the rep, although there are signs of improvement.
The sample size of his ability to anchor against top college defenders is still a cause for concern. He allayed some of those fears with a good showing at the Senior Bowl after a rocky first day.
He also has a habit of stopping his feet when making contact with stronger defenders so will need to keep his feet moving to help sustain blocks and to aid displacement of defenders.
Another area of concern I have is his punch strength. Although he does have good timing, the strength of his punch against top talent could be an issue. Stronger players than what he has faced so far could walk through relatively unscathed. Being able to add more power to the punch without compromising balance could be key to the effectiveness at the next level.
The Senior Bowl was going to be a massive influence on Radunz’s draft stock and whether he would be seen as a raw project with the physical tools or if he could mix it with some of the top players in the draft to put himself in early round consideration.
After a disappointing first day, Radunz came out swinging for the remainder of practices and the game itself. He showed excellent footwork, a wide base to help keep low and most importantly, the ability to anchor against the better opposition.
Since coming in as a 266lb Freshman in 2017, he has added nearly 40lbs of mass and I think his frame could stand to gain even more weight. The benefits of a few extra pounds to help even more with his anchor and his strength need to be balanced with the effect on his athleticism but I feel it is a price worth paying.
Teams will also be impressed by the position versatility after positive reps at guard during the Senior Bowl, showing good core strength and further evidence of improving anchoring ability against defensive tackles. Though the limited sample size is still a concern and I would be wary of stating that it is at a level required to play on the interior in the NFL, but the signs of an upward trend are positive.
Personally, I am not entirely sure why, other than a temporary measure, a team would want to use Radunz with his physical traits and technical ability at anywhere else other than as a franchise left tackle. His skill set will mean he is scheme versatile, but I would like to see him drafted by a team that asks him to use his athleticism to get into space.
I feel that if he would have been able to sustain the performances from his limited 2020 game tape and Senior Bowl over a full season, then he would be challenging Christian Darrisaw as OT3 in this draft.
Dillon Radunz 2021 NFL Draft Projection
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NDSU vs Central Arkansas - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XEfnwYK94hY&t=105s
NDSU vs Montana State - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4nZIzNEeVvs
NDSU vs Northern Iowa - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DoeAaVqW3Qo
NDSU vs James Madison - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1IJIhvXriIs