You thought the Cleveland Browns were finished in the fifth round after drafting CB Buster Skrine? They weren't. The Browns traded both of their sixth-round draft picks (No. 168 and No. 170 overall) to the Minnesota Vikings. With that pick, the Browns drafted OT Jason Pinkston out of Pittsburgh. I think Pinkston was a tremendous value pick for the fifth round, as I originally projected him to go in round 3 or round 4. He is also teammates with Jabaal Sheard, the defensive end the Browns drafted yesterday in the second round.
While Tom Heckert has stated that Tony Pashos is projected to be their starting right guard, Cleveland was lacking youth on the right side of the offensive line. They don't necessarily have "studs" all of the sudden, but Shawn Lauvao and Pinkston give them some options for the future on the right side of the line. Even if just one of those guys works out to be a starter, it'll be a big "win" for Cleveland. After the jump is a scouting report on Pinkston from Mocking the Draft.
6'4, 305 pounds | Offensive tackle | Pittsburgh
Agility: Pinkston's is not a very fluid athlete and struggles to remain balanced. He plays with a high pad level and he bends at the waste rather than at his knees. These factors lead to a lack of balance and uncoordinated movements. However, Pinkston shows quick feet especially while in his kick slide.
Movement: High pad level and uneven weight distribution result in Pinkston being off center. He is often falling forward and out of control when trying to apply a block. In pass protection, his feet get to wide hurting his ability to anchor after contact. His short arms also lead him to lunging forward and loosing his balance.
Pass blocking: Lack of balance and arm length lead to struggles in pass protection for Pinkston. He tends to raise his pad level and over extends his body in order to reach the pass rusher. He has quick feet but that is negated by his lack of balance. Speed and power rushers alike give Pinkston trouble. The speed guys can get underneath him and turn the corner while the power rushers can get into his body and push him backwards. Pinkston is more of a puncher than a Velcro blocker. Overall, Pinkston is going to struggle protecting the passer in the NFL but his quick feet might be his only saving grace.
Quickness: Pinkston has quick feet and is explosive out of his stance. These two attributes are what gives him a fighting chance in pass protection. He is able fire off the ball and get into the defender quickly in the running game.
Run blocking: Keeping his feet underneath him and remaining balanced are problem areas for Pinkston. He has a tendency to lung at his target rather than sitting into his stance and taking solid steps. Pinkston appears to be compensating for his less than idea arm length. He lunges to try and get inside hand placement but it often results in missed blocks. Being off balanced limits the push off the line Pinkston is able to generate. I also question Pinkston football IQ as he appears lost and unable to identify the proper target. This is most noticeable when Pinkston attempts to make a block in the 2nd level.
Strength: Pinkston has strength but his lack of balance limits his playing strength. His natural ability allows him to get some movement on the line but his forward lean limits the potential. Pinkston has a good power punch and is able to recoil quickly. However, he is more of a puncher than a Velcro player and his short arms allow defenders to slip past him.
Technique: Lacking a natural bend hinders Pinkston's ability to sink his hips and anchor. This is compounded by his tendency to play high. Pinkston's steps are long and uncoordinated which lead to poor balance in both the passing and running game. While in his kick slide, Pinkston keeps his hands out in front of him with little wasted motion and this allows him to be an effect puncher.
Final word: Pinkston is not a prospect that I see developing into a contributor in the NFL. He has limited athletic ability and poor overall technique. These problems are closely related as some poor technique is a result of limited athleticism. Pinkston's best fit might be as a right tackle but in order to be successful he needs to work on remaining balanced in the running game. I see Pinkston as a late round tackle prospect.