Home > News > Sports > NFL > 2016 NFL Draft: Cody Whitehair selected 56th overall by Chicago Bears

2016 NFL Draft: Cody Whitehair selected 56th overall by Chicago Bears

Cody Whitehair - G, Kansas StatePick Analysis


Cody Whitehair – G, Kansas State

Pick Analysis

The Bears have needed offensive line help for years, with the only consistent piece being Kyle Long (and even he’s been less effective since being moved out to tackle). Well, Long is being moved back to guard, and joining him will be one of the best interior offensive linemen in this class in Kansas State Wildcat Cody Whitehair. Whitehair has the skills to start immediately, and will be an instant upgrade to the OL. Pairing up with Long either side of Wil Montgomery give the Bears a really solid interior OL, helping to keep the pressure off Jay Cutler in the middle. Great pick at a position of need. Gur Samuel

Player Analysis

With 50 starts in four seasons, and as an all-conference selection each year, Whitehair brings a huge amount of experience.  In his final season, that included being chosen as first team all-American and receiving some votes for offensive lineman of the year.  Playing the last two seasons as the Wildcats left tackle, he has also played at right tackle and guard during his college career.  While he’s played on the edge a lot and most recently, his best fit for the NFL is to move inside, where his size best suits.  There is the potential however to offer cover at all five spots along the line; that kind of versatility is something that is always considered a big plus to a lineman’s stock.  Though he hasn’t played center for Kansas State, he took some snaps there during the Senior Bowl at the end of January, and teams have worked him out at the position since, he could be an excellent fit there too.  Few O-linemen enter the league as polished and ready to go as Whitehair is.  An excellent pass protector, he has superb footwork with a wide stance setting a strong anchor.  Mirroring the movements of defenders well, his reactions and adjustments are quick and successful, always looking comfortable and in control.  He does have a tendency to play a little too high, with that leverage being one of the few technical issues that could use some work.  In a Senior Bowl in which the defensive line for the most point dominated their offensive counterparts over the course of the week, Whitehair wasn’t mentioned much but was one of the few on his side of the ball that consistently held up both in practice drills and during the game itself.  Another box checked in the process along the way to the draft, which is seeing Whitehair draw some comparisons to a guy like Zack Martin or Joel Bitonio, who similarly made the switch inside after a long and impressive college career outside.  He’s not the same calibre of prospect that Martin was a couple years ago, but should similarly be a strong starter early on as a pro.  That ability to plug and play immediately, along with the versatility he offers gives Whitehair the chance to perhaps be selected near the end of the first round.  At the very least he’s a very safe second round selection. (Rebecca Rennie)

Grade A


2016 NFL Draft: Cody Whitehair selected 56th overall by Chicago Bears

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