When it comes to the latter parts of the NFL Draft, teams are betting on experience, versatility, and athleticism. Perhaps no player better encapsulates those three elements in the 2021 NFL Draft than South Carolina offensive guard Sadarius Hutcherson. He confirmed his athleticism at the Gamecocks’ Pro Day. Now, can he translate that into a selection on Day 3 in Cleveland?
Sadarius Hutcherson NFL Draft Player Profile
- Position: Offensive Guard
- School: South Carolina
- Current Year: Redshirt Senior
- Height: 6’3 1/2″
- Weight: 321 pounds
Tony Pauline’s Sadarius Hutcherson Scouting Report
Positives: Strong, wide-bodied blocker who is only effective in a small area. Patient, stays square, and shows strength at the point. Solid position blocker who keeps his feet moving, works blocks, and seals defenders from the action. Explosive at the point, anchors in pass protection, and works through the whistle. Keeps his head on a swivel.
Negatives: Neither quick nor fluid getting out to the second level. Shows a lot of stiffness in his game. Not a natural knee bender and blocks very tall.
Analysis: Hutcherson was a solid lineman at South Carolina and comes with next-level size, but his inability to block with leverage hurts his chances at the next level.
Sadarius Hutcherson Player Profile
Although he heads to the 2021 NFL Draft as a versatile offensive lineman, Hutcherson flexed his versatility and athleticism in a very different way at the high school level. The Tennessee native lined up on both sides of the ball for Huntingdon High School but never on the offensive line. He played tight end on offense and excelled as a defensive end.
During his senior season for Huntingdon, Hutcherson racked up 45 tackles and 6 sacks, helping the team to a 10-2 record and advancing to the second round of the playoffs.
A three-star recruit, who was the 63rd ranked strong side defensive end in the 2016 recruiting class, Hutcherson received a small number of offers, including Power Five proposals from Louisville, Memphis, and Arizona State. With Louisville considered a favorite early on, a November 2015 offer from South Carolina led to him continuing his football journey with the Gamecocks.
Hutcherson’s college football career at South Carolina
Hutcherson committed to South Carolina with the expectation that it would give him the potential to start immediately at the college level. However, he redshirted in 2016 but hit the weight room with impressive results. Hutcherson also put the work in on the practice field, earning the Offensive Scout Team Award for his contributions there.
Having built the requisite physique to transition to offensive guard for South Carolina, he was ready to rumble in 2017. Although he wouldn’t see the field in the first three games of the season, an injury to the Gamecocks’ starting guard gave him the opportunity to make an impact. Hutcherson made his debut against Lousiana Tech, going on to start four games and emerging victorious in three of them.
During spring practice of 2018, the South Carolina offensive guard earned the Joe Morrison Offensive Player of the Spring, setting up for a full season as a starter. Hutcherson demonstrated his versatility, lining up at both right and left guard. Meanwhile, his full-time addition had a positive impact on the offense. South Carolina had been ranked 99th in total offense in 2017 but jumped up to the 57th ranked unit.
Hutcherson flashes his versatility and athleticism
During the offseason of his redshirt junior season, Hutcherson was named as one of “Feldman’s Freaks” for his sheer strength. He put that strength to the test during the season, moving to left tackle to protect the blindside for freshman quarterback Ryan Hilinski.
In arguably his best season for South Carolina, Hutcherson returned to offensive guard as a senior. Starting all 10 games as a team captain, he led the line as the Gamecocks recorded their first 1,000-yard rusher since 2013. Hutcherson received third-team All-SEC recognition in addition to being named the SEC Offensive Lineman of the Week following a dominant performance against Vanderbilt.
Following the season, Hutcherson declared for the 2021 NFL Draft. His performances earned him an invite to the NFLPA Bowl and NFL Combine, although both events deviated from their usual format. During the South Carolina Pro Day, he demonstrated his pure athletic ability with a 4.95 40-yard dash time and flashed his strength with 36 bench press reps.
Sadarius Hutcherson’s best fits in the 2021 NFL Draft
The combination of his versatility, experience, and athleticism makes Hutcherson an intriguing late-round prospect in the 2021 NFL Draft. Although he has some work to do from a technical perspective, his sheer strength is alluring. Moreover, his experience playing both guard position and tackle could see him secure a spot on a roster.
He is best suited to playing the role of mauler in an inside zone scheme at the next level. As such, some team fits include the Miami Dolphins, San Francisco 49ers, and Minnesota Vikings.
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Oliver Hodgkinson is a staff writer for Pro Football Network. You can follow him on Twitter at @ojhodgkinson.