When searching for a small school sleeper to profile, you need to spend a lot of time on game tape. Studying every piece of video to see if and how the prospect can fit what an NFL, roster is looking for. Then there are moments where you run into game tape, like OT Antonio Garcia, from Troy University, and you just sit back and enjoy the ride.
For this small school piece, we decided to treat you guys to pure talent. Garcia is blessed with a thick base, pure strength and strong punch, to be a force in both the run and pass. Mix those traits with his natural athleticism to get out in front of runners, and you have yourself, a “Blue Chip” prospect.
We sat down with the 6’6, 308 lbs, monster, to ask him his take on the Draft process and what he brings to a locker room?
“I don’t get caught up in all of this really, things have been hectic, but I come from a strong core that keeps me humble. Everyday, there is something new about my stock, my draft grade, good and bad. I get that it is a business, so I don’t get too high, or too low, I will just continue to get better as a player.
This whole thing is crazy, but I won’t allow myself to be caught up in the hype, or the drama of it. What happens…happens, and there is nothing I will force, or try to control. You hear it all the time, but its true..you can only worry about what you can control, and that starts with my emotions.
As far as what I will bring to a locker room, what I did bring and what I will continue to do in the NFL? It has to be leadership, that is how I am, I always want to be the guy my team can count on. So I work my butt off, lead by example, and get vocal when it is really needed. My team will always know what I am about and that is being a true leader. That’s what I will bring to my new city.”
The 23 year old, has started 42 career games, allowing only 3 sacks, in over 1,700 snaps. Along with his reliability, Garcia brings a talent, that would fit any teams offense.
“Honestly, I can play all five spots on the line. I know I have the speed and athleticism too fit into a zone scheme, to be able to get out in front of defenders and block. I know I have the skill set and the attitude to be a road grader, and help in the run. So yes, I can fit any type of offensive scheme.”
With the amount of time spent, building an offensive line to protect Carson Wentz. It has become obvious the Birds’, value building up front. With a new culture in place, mentality is a focal point moving forward..and that of Garcia could be exactly what the team are looking for.
“I do need to say this and I am sure you get this all the time. As far as me coming from a small school, it doesn’t matter, I don’t think anyone outplays us..or at least works harder than us. Coming from this small school, we know we have to work harder to get the attention, or the respect of bigger schools. I will always have that chip on my shoulder, so even if I went number one overall, I will always outwork the next man, I will never get comfortable as a player. I can’t, that is the mentality I have, and a lot of us from Troy, or small schools have.”
The Eagles, are strong with depth on the offensive line, but the addition, of Garcia could prove to be a smart move. With his pure talent and value of versatility, he could end up being one of the biggest moves by Howie Roseman and company over the last few years.
Needless to say, Garcia, has the mindset of a winner. Add that to his talent, and we are looking at a future star, a star that would look really good in Midnight Green.
Mandatory Credit: Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports