April 26, 2012 |
No. 4 Minnesota Vikings: T Matt Kalil, USC - - The younger brother of Carolina's Ryan Kalil, the highest-paid center in the NFL, Matt is widely viewed as the top tackle in the draft. He initially backed up Tyron Smith at right tackle, then, as a sophomore, beat out Smith for the vacancy at left tackle. Kalil has a large collection of remote-controlled cars that he raced this off-season when he wasn't working out for the draft. Comment: Christian Ponder was sacked 30 times in 10 starts and the Vikings surrendered 49 sacks overall.
September 2, 2008 |
While the Beanie Wells watch continues in Ohio this week, USC's open date on Saturday allows the Trojans to turn inward. The focus, as per Pete Carroll's bye-week formula, will be on freshmen. Offensive linemen Tyron Smith, Khaled Holmes and Matt Kalil are expected to get extensive work with the first-team offense when the Trojans return to practice today. "We'll see how far they can take it," Carroll said. "I don't have any goal in mind." For all of the talk about competition and positions being up for grabs on a daily basis at USC, only one offensive lineman has gone from reserve to starter status based on merit during a bye week after an opener.
September 8, 2009 |
USC's offensive line has played only one game in its current configuration and is readying for a test on Saturday at Ohio State. But the unit left quite an impression on San Jose State Coach Dick Tomey . On Monday, after reviewing tape of the Trojans' season-opening 56-3 victory over the Spartans, Tomey said the Trojans' line was "the best I've competed against as a coach," adding that the Trojans "might have four first-round draft choices...
April 29, 2011 |
At USC's pro day workout last month, Tyron Smith said he accepted an invitation to New York for the first round of the NFL draft without fear that he might sit fidgeting in the green room at Radio City Music Hall. The offensive tackle's confidence was well-founded. Taken ninth by the Dallas Cowboys, Smith didn't have to wait long Thursday. The former Moreno Valley Rancho Verde High star was the first offensive lineman chosen and the first offensive lineman in 30 years to be selected by the Cowboys in the first round.
November 7, 2010 |
USC's last-minute, 34-33 victory over Arizona State cast the spotlight on Trojans special teams ? for better and worse. The good: The Trojans blocked two punts and also an extra-point attempt, Torin Harris returning the latter for two points and setting the stage for Joe Houston's winning field goal four minutes later. Jake Harfman averaged 43.5 yards a punt, and Mitch Mustain completed what turned out to be a crucial two-point conversion pass. The bad: Houston missed two field-goal attempts, and the Trojans gave up a 100-yard kickoff return.
August 19, 2011 |
USC's Matt Kalil is regarded as one of the elite left tackles in college football, a top prospect at one of the NFL's premium positions. But the 6-foot-7, 295-pound junior is trying to put 2012 draft forecasts out of his mind. "It's pretty cool having those [projections] about you, I'm not going to lie," he said this week. "But I care about the ones after the season. "It's all about my team right now. That's what I'm focused on. " Kalil returned Friday after sitting out a few days of practices because of knee soreness.