On the final day of interviews at the 2023 NFL Combine, I had the opportunity to speak with USC OL Andrew Vorhees. Vorhees has been a staple on the Trojan offensive line for the better part of a half-decade, committing to USC in 2017 after graduating high school a year early. Having spent six seasons in college, I asked Vorhees about his decision to commit to USC and what it meant to him to be a Trojan.
“I was considering a lot,” Vorhees said. “I think it officially came down to Stanford, USC…academics and education was a huge thing. Rich history of football tradition at both schools. Ultimately decided to go to USC and think that was the best decision I could have made. What a special opportunity to wear the Cardinal and Gold. It’s just such an iconic uniform, such an iconic stadium history there of offensive linemen. Incredible to say the least.”
Vorhees started 37 games during his time in college, logging 25 starts at RG, eight at LG, and four at LT. He missed time in 2018 with a meniscus injury and missed most of the 2019 season after needing foot surgery. Vorhees also battled injuries throughout the 2022 season, causing his medical record to be a big component of his draft stock this spring.
Still, Vorhees is one of the most experienced offensive linemen in this draft class and feels that experience and versatility will help him appeal to teams, being a guy that can contribute right away.
“Yeah, you’d say so, right?” Vorhees responded. “I think through my ability to be coachable and just learn on the fly and I just accept great coaching. So, all that just led to the opportunity and whenever it was just took advantage of what was presented. I played every position except for center on the offensive line, I think just under or right around 3,600 career snaps at USC. Whenever you have the opportunity to be out there on the field and just get that rep on the field in a real-life situation setting, I think that’s just tool you can put in your tool belt, as I like to call it.”
Having been at USC for six seasons, Vorhees has faced several talented defensive linemen. However, when I asked him which one stood out, he recalled a matchup in his first year as a starter against a former first round pick that he’ll never forget.
“That’s tough,” Vorhees said. “Six years…a lot of opponents. I think Jerry Tillery at Notre Dame back in 2017 when I was pretty young. I think I was 18 years old when I played him for the first time. He was a pretty impressive player, something I remembered in playing him.”
As Alex Kozora highlighted in a film room on Vorhees at the beginning of the pre-draft process, he is a player that the Pittsburgh Steelers should have interest in given his size, play style, versatility, and experience. When I asked him if he met with the Steelers, Vorhees responded that he had a productive meeting with the team.
“Yeah, I’ve met formally with the Pittsburgh Steelers,” Vorhees confirmed. “Genuine dudes. It was a good one-on-one conversation with Coach Tomlin and the support staff behind him. I felt like it went well.”
Kozora completed the pre-draft profile on Vorhees for the site and I covered his film a lot during the season. One thing that continually stuck out with Vorhees and his tape was his physicality, having that aggressive, physical demeanor to dominate his competition across from him. Vorhees can be a nasty run blocker at times at tape, pancaking dudes into the ground. Still, he recognizes his weaknesses as well and was clear to point them out when asked what his greatest strengths and weaknesses are as well as what he brings to the NFL franchise that selects him.
“You’re getting a dependable, day in/day out kind of guy,” Vorhees said. “Blue collar, hard hat, kind of a dude just looking for an opportunity to stick my claim. Physicality I’d say is best attribute and probably pad level is something I’d need to work on. I think offensive linemen tend to get a little high in times.”