2018 Vs: Ohio State, 2019 Vs: Penn State, USC
Struggles to locate defenders in the second level and take proper targeting angles. Tends to overstep the corner which makes him susceptible to inside counter moves. Wirfs mainly needs to improve his hips and keep his lower body parallel to the line of scrimmage when pass blocking. The RT needs to sit lower in his pass set and bend his knees to anchor better against the bullrush. Tristan's lack of arm length might be his downfall at the next level and could force him to be moved to guard.
All in all, Tristan Wirfs is a semi-polished elite athlete at the right tackle position, who's physical abilities equal to an insanely high ceiling with the floor of a quality starting guard. His length may force him inside if he's not able to clean up from a technical standpoint. His versatility and physical intangibles are going to have several O-line needy team's salivating at the opportunity to take him within the first 10-15 picks come April. He's truly a rare athlete that any offensive line coach would love to mold into a pro bowl tackle or guard. If moved inside, he's likely the best interior offensive lineman in the draft but that depends on who drafts him and his continuous growth from year to year. Best suited for a zone blocking scheme.
Wirfs is the epitome of a freak athlete and is riddled with god-given ability from a physical traits standpoint. His combine performance was outstanding but still needs to translate his athleticism into playing the tackle position. And he's shown the ability to do so as he drastically improved his technique from year to year. His change of direction is top-notch and recovers very well when being forced to redirect his momentum and 320lb frame. Was moved to LT due to injury and proved he can play across the line.
Movement off L.O.S.
Pull & Block Outside
Adjust in Space
Use of Hands
Big Play Ability
Strong at the point of attack but lacks the tenacity you'd hope to see from someone with his athletic prowess. Wirfs often creates movement off the line of scrimmage but needs improvement with his hand placement and punch in order to cut down on his inconsistencies as a run blocker. Although he's an amazing athlete, he tends to wiff when blocking in space and especially in the second level due to his inability to change targeting angles once up to speed. His quickness out of his stance and agility allow him to move across the line and out into space with ease. IF locked onto his target once he's built momentum, Wirfs is very destructive and often opens up massive run lanes that spring open big gains from his running backs. Head placement and finishing when reach blocking can certainly improve.
Excellent quick set and ability to jump the edge of speed rushers. He protects the corner extremely well but has shown to struggle against long-armed bull rushers who take advantage of his non-prototypical length. As a pass blocker, Wirfs' feet are very smooth and has a pro-level kickslide that'll translate day one in the NFL against elite edge defenders. Wirfs' biggest flaws in the passing game are his inability to anchor against rushers who are able to get off balance with speed to power and inside counter moves. His reaction time is slightly lacking and often allows rushers to take advantage once his hips aren't parallel with the line of scrimmage. All that said, these are all teachable skills that once he's mastered and combined with the agility and power, he could be a dominant pass blocker.
Ability to Combat Inside Move
Play strength and power doesn't necessarily equal toughness and tenacity. Tristan lacks the "nasty" you'd like to see from someone who's that gifted. The fact that he started as a true freshman and played all 3 seasons without any injuries that caused him to miss time is very promising. The technique is still inconsistent but the effort has never lacked. The production as both a run blocker and in pass protection speaks for itself.
Wirfs is an athlete first and it shows when overwhelmed by stunts and lack of assignment knowledge on overloaded blitzes to his side. The Iowa right tackle's improvement from year to year is a very important trait that shows he's growing at the position. His combo blocks and ability to pass on his assignment inside is solid but not perfect by any means.