Film Room: OT Le’Raven Clark – Well, It’s Depth

Omar Khan is keeping us busy this offseason. On Friday afternoon, the Pittsburgh Steelers signed veteran OT Le’Raven Clark to a one-year deal. There was no way the team was going to go into the draft with two and only two offensive tackles, Dan Moore Jr. and Chukwuma Okorafor, on the roster. Adding a veteran with versatility was an obvious looming addition. Enter Clark, going on seven years in the league, appearing in 64 games with 18 starts and experience at both tackle spots along with right guard.

So is Clark any good? Like we’ve done before, I’ll do a brief Good/Bad breakdown and visit some tape to show you what I mean.

The Good

— Big lower half and great size overall with rare and elite-level length
— Aggressive run blocker who runs his feet and finishes, able to create movement up front
— Uses size to wash defenders on down blocks
— Length can make him hard to get around
— Able to stick in run game when he gets hands on
— Shows decent anchor and power, hard to beat down the middle in the pass game
— Experience at both tackle spots and right guard, also used as a tackle-eligible in run-heavy packages

Clark’s size is interesting enough with over 36 inch arms. He has a big lower half and looks like the type of offensive lineman the Steelers are putting together. Big, strong, and long. In his two main games of action I watched last year against Houston and and Dallas late in the season and he showed some ability, especially versus the Texans, to throw his weight around when working with angles. He has the size, length, and strength to wash defenders down the line.

He’s the RT, #61 in all these clips.

He’s better at dealing with bull rushes than speed rushes with his power and strength. It’s still not something he’s good at, getting walked back and allowing a forced fumble against the Texans, but it’s better than when he’s asked to move laterally. But aside from the basics of his resume and that angle blocking, there isn’t a lot of “good” to discuss. Now onto the bad.

The Bad

— Fails to get width on his kicksets and too slow out of his stance
— Extremely vulnerable to outside and speed rushes and routinely allows a soft/short corner
— Lacks foot speed to meet pass rushers on the edge
— Can’t defend his outside shoulder when defenders swipe and club
— Struggles to redirect and move inside, doesn’t handle chips well when defenders get bumped and change directions
— Can’t be left on an island and needs tight end or preferably, guard help with the line sliding to his side to eliminate pass rushers having two-way go’s
— Has difficulty reaching and cutting off in the run game
— Loses balance too often and ends up on the ground as a run blocker

The bad…yeah, it’s pretty rough. Being an NFL tackle is hard but Clark really struggles in pass protection. The tape does the talking and watch him just get chewed up on the edge in the two games I broke down. Viewer discretion is advised.

He’s the RT in all these clips, #61. The last one against Houston is him betting beat with power/bull rush.

Pretty ugly. And against Dallas, he wasn’t even seeing much of Micah Parsons.

He’s a better run blocker than pass protector but still lumbers in space a bit too much. He has grip strength and can latch and drive but he’s not going to be effective in zone schemes as the backside cutoff.

Statistically, here’s the breakdown of Clark’s career snap count, per PFF.

LT – 445
LG – 0
C – 0
RG – 318
RT – 392
TE – 69

In 2022, had saw 98 snaps at right tackle, ten at left tackle, and six as a tackle-eligible/tight end.

Final Thoughts

Bottom line is he’s this year’s Trent Scott. And like Scott, having him be one snap away from seeing action is a worrying thought. Clark is a better run blocker than Scott but is just as poor in pass protection and will need lots of help (and the right kind of help) in order to mask his lack of lateral athleticism.

Certainly, this does not prevent the Steelers from drafting a tackle and there’s no guarantee Clark even makes the 53-man roster out of camp. I could see him being beat out by someone, even an undrafted free agent. But Clark is a reminder of the size/length traits the Steelers are gravitating towards and having a veteran who has played both spots.

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