The Pittsburgh Steelers are one of many NFL organizations who could be looking at an interior offensive lineman in the upcoming 2021 NFL Draft. However, unlike the other franchises who are looking to add to their current offensive line depth chart, the Steelers possess the 24th overall pick.
Not really conducive to getting a top tier prospect, but what about on Day 2 of the draft? There are a lot of talented players who could be available to the Steelers at in the mid-to-later rounds.
There is the chance the Steelers choose to take a versatile interior lineman to bolster their offensive line depth in 2021, and if Wisconsin-Whitewater guard Quinn Meinerz is available when the Steelers pick, is he an option as a mid round talent?
I did some digging on Meinerz, and put together a brief synopsis of the kind of player he is, and will be when becoming a professional. Below you’ll see draft profile breakdowns, film room breakdowns and game film for you to enjoy.
Don’t listen to me, or anyone else, form your own opinion on Meinerz. I plan on doing this for other prospects as the draft approaches. If there is a specific player you’d like to see covered, simply let me know and I’ll be glad to put it together!
Let us know your thoughts on Meinerz in the comment section below, and be sure to stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news and notes surrounding the Steelers as they prepare for the new league year, NFL Free Agency and the 2021 NFL Draft.
The Draft Network
Quinn Meinerz is a well-developed player from the Division III ranks who’s appeared in 33 games for one of the more historic programs across the country. An exact guard body type, he plays just as strong as his frame indicates. Playing strictly left guard (based on 2019 film), he’s found a comfortable home on that side of the line. He’s a below-average athlete, but he makes up for it with his knowledge of concepts and strength levels. Constantly showing Herculean-like strength against his surroundings, he’s been able to create and sustain high levels of production during his time as a starter. Despite his experience, Meinerz is an extremely raw prospect overall. A below-average athlete, there are often times where he will sacrifice his technique in order to use his strength to bully targets. Balance has also been a constant issue for him, as he makes frequent trips to the ground because of his eagerness to overwhelm the opposition at the point of attack. Proving to be much more comfortable in a man/gap/power scheme, he’s a blocker that is best suited in a downhill scheme that allows him to perform quick pulls and kick-out blocks frequently. A system that revolves around quickly getting a body on a body with lots of single blocks in order for him to exhibit his strength to impose on defenders would be ideal. Technical aspects and footwork of the position will need to be instructed to him as he was taught some unconventional techniques during his collegiate career that may not be as effective on the next level. He has a background as a wrestler while at Hartford Union High School (WI).
Ideal Role: Developmental guard that will need time on the practice squad to develop in hopes of eventually becoming a rosterable player by the tail end of his rookie contract.
Scheme Fit: Man/Gap/Power scheme.
Weight: 320 lbs.
Very good size at 6’2, 320 pounds, and has big ten plus inch hands to go along with 33” arms. It’s somewhat hard to glean his traits from his Division III film at Wisconsin-Whitewater since he was so much more physically advanced than kids who have no shot of playing in the NFL, but Meinerz showed so much promise at the 2021 Reese’s Senior Bowl.
Showed a lot of strength at the point of attack in the one on one drills, was thick to contact in team drills, and did well in combo situations, hit the backside of ACE blocks better than I expected, climbed to the second level when he needed to, and did the same on the front side of ACE blocks.
He played with excellent leverage and grip strength, gets that inside hand in tight, and limits defenders space while driving his legs through targets and showing impressive functional and core strength. I think it’s important to note that Meinerz hadn’t played football since 2019 due to COVID-19, yet he was able to show up big against SEC, BIG-10, and other Power-5 players.
Meinerz played guard in college and lined up at center during the Senior Bowl, where he showed interior positional versatility. He also does well to latch that post hand and steer defenders in the run game and the passing game, if necessary.
He has the posterior strength to anchor down against the bull-rush, re-sink his hips, adjust his hands as needed to defenders counters—I don’t have many worries about his ability to pass protect. However, early in the Senior Bowl, he did seem to struggle with immediate power, but he quickly adjusted to the counters.
Overall, Meinerz looks to be following the steps of Ali Marpet as a small school Senior Bowl player who skyrockets up the boards because of that week in Mobile. Meinerz’s effectiveness that week speaks to his football character and preparation ability.
He was a wrestler in college who had to cut weight, but since there was no wrestling in 2020, he was able to keep his playing weight and adjust to that lifestyle.
The darling of this year’s Senior Bowl, Meinerz has broken through and onto NFL draft boards despite moving up from Division III and having no 2020 tape. He flashed at times in 2019, but his tape was nothing like what we saw against upgraded competition across from him at the Senior Bowl. His hands have improved greatly and his movement appears to be much more efficient and powerful. The step up to NFL competition will require an adjustment period as a full-time move to center likely awaits him. He has the ability to move and finish drive blocks and his pass protection is clearly improving. He has the strength and demeanor to become an impactful starter in the near future.
- Above-average length and hand size as a center.
- Strong week of Senior Bowl practices.
- Former wrestler with premium core strength.
- Operates with good knee bend and wide, sturdy base.
- Leverage and leg drive to push flesh around.
- Outstanding improvement as block finisher from 2019 tape.
- Effective hand flashes to keep rushers guessing.
- Able to throw punches in flurries.
- Athleticism to work down the field in the screen game.
- Strong hands to latch in and cinch up the block.
- Adequate lateral movement to mirror the rush.
- Needs to improve footwork into block fits.
- A little too much forward lean off the snap and into first contact.
- Can improve bringing feet with him in settle steps.
- Level of speed and competition could create adjustment period.
- Average getting to proper landmarks on the second level.
- Plays power game but will need to add a level of finesse and patience.