As a massive offensive tackle with a tremendous collegiate resume and an NFL bloodline, Notre Dame left tackle Joe Alt seems like a foregone conclusion to be one of the first offensive players selected in the 2024 NFL Draft.
The son of two-time Pro Bowl tackle John Alt, Joe led all offensive tackles with a 91.4 PFF grade in 2022 as a true sophomore. An important rule in scouting is to scout the player and not the helmet, so while Alt projects to be another standout offensive lineman to come from the Fighting Irish program, he has reached that point on his own merit.
What exactly does Alt do well, though? Will he live up to the lofty standards that come with being a Notre Dame offensive lineman? Let’s explore this by breaking down one of the consensus top players in the 2024 NFL Draft.
- Offers tremendous raw size at 6-foot-8 and 315 pounds with great length and a frame that NFL teams will fall in love with
- Has a sturdy anchor, and his raw strength allows him to hold up defenders at the point of attack
- Long arms allow him to lock out edge rushers from the inside of his chest
- With how big and naturally strong he is in his lower half, he’s able to generate good push and control defenders in the run game
- Dominant run blocker whose raw size, power and awareness of his movements make him very tough to beat
- For such a big guy, he has nice acceleration in a vacuum and good short-area athleticism
- Keeps a wide and sturdy base in pass protection which allows him to maintain ideal coordination
- Coordinated athlete who does a good job of rolling his hips through contact to seal off defenders in the run game
- Knows how to utilize well-placed strikes to knock edge rushers out of the play, especially out of the ground game
- Has very good strike placement, but his grip strength is just okay
- Moves defenders well off of pure size and strength but doesn’t really have a super nasty edge in his game right now
- Being a taller offensive tackle, knee bend can be an issue sometimes
- While his pad level is better than most his size, his high center of gravity can make leverage an issue sometimes
Armed with an enticing combination of size, length, athleticism, strength and football IQ, Alt has all the tools to be a reliable blind-side protector in the NFL for years to come.
ESPN’s Jordan Reid compared Alt to Vikings Pro Bowl offensive tackle Brian O’Neill, and that’s an assessment I feel pretty good about. O’Neill hasn’t had a season below a 70 PFF grade since his rookie year, and he’s topped a 75.0 grade in three of his last four seasons. That seems like a realistic outcome for Alt, who checks a lot of those same boxes from a physical perspective and arguably offers better football IQ than O’Neill did coming out of Pittsburgh.
Alt isn’t the flashiest lineman out there in terms of generating highlight-worthy pancake blocks, but he’s a sturdy and reliable blocker with great physical tools. He possesses Pro Bowl upside and seems like a safe bet to end up as a top-10 selection in the 2024 NFL Draft.