Joe Alt Draft Profile
Standing at 6’8 322 lbs. Notre Dame Left Tackle, Joe Alt has a rare combination of size and athleticism. He’s built like a Ford but moves like a Ferrari, he is what every team looks for in a blindside protector. Born and raised in the midwest, Alt is the son of left tackle, John Alt, who is in the Chiefs’ Ring of Honor. At Notre Dame, Alt started 33 games in three seasons and is a 2x first team-All American. On top of being a team captain, Alt was in the running for just about every award possible for a collegiate offensive lineman. There will be high expectations for Alt from day one due to his collegiate resume and family history, but I think he has the chance to exceed all of them.
It is rare to see someone so big, move so well; Alt has rare size with very good movement ability and excellent feet. When guys are that big it is easy to play high and have a tight lower half, but that isn’t the case with Alt. He does a very good job at sinking into his hips against power rushes and bending around the corner in the run game. His ability to move in space when getting up to the second level and when isolated against an edge rusher is untenable; he is the prototype. Alt isn’t just tall, but he is long which gives him some slack in what he is allowed to do. If he gets beat in either the run or pass game, his length can get him back in position to make a block. In a similar manner to how Brock Purdy gets praised for his ability to operate the 49ers’ system exactly how Kyle Shanahan intends; Alt makes his coaches’ visions a reality on a consistent basis. He is a Xanadu for offensive line coaches.
From a mentality standpoint Alt has the blend of toughness and intelligence that teams crave in an offensive lineman. Whether it is the subtle, petty shoves after the whistle or him finishing his blocks to the ground, Alt possesses the nastiness that is wanted from the position. An underrated aspect of his game is his intelligence— and it isn’t just blitz or stunt recognition (which he has); it is his hat placement. He understands positioning and has the athleticism to win the leverage battle. Whether it’s reach blocks on the frontside of outside zone or drive cut-offs on the backside, Alt is capable of gaining leverage even if the defense is in the perfect look. Against rush games on the defensive line, Alt does a great job at recognizing different twists or additional rushers. He’s not just a space eater, he is a really savvy player that is also willing to get dirty.
In the pass game, Alt’s biggest strength is his ability to keep defenders off of him and lock out his arms. While he has a very good anchor, he doesn’t let edge rushers get into his body which makes life frustrating for power guys. I can always tell when my roommate John is coming down the stairs because he is so heavy on his feet, it’s like “bang, bang, bang”. For someone who is 6’8 300+ lbs. you’d expect the same thing; but that’s not the case for Alt. His feet are light and quick; his ability to mirror edge rushers on an island allows him to matchup well against speed rushers. He doesn’t ever get too narrow in his stance, which enables him to sit when defenders convert from speed to power. His hands aren’t super powerful and there isn’t a ton of pop at the initial point of contact, but he is smart. The most frustrating thing for defensive lineman is when they can’t use their hands, so Alt grabs their wrists which wilts their ability to do anything but drive with their legs. That is where being the son of an offensive lineman has its advantages. Every defensive lineman tries to use Newton’s second law of motion to their advantage, net force is equal to mass times acceleration. So Alt likes to get out and jump set. In doing so, Alt doesn’t let rushers gain any acceleration which weakens their rush plan all together. Since Alt is so quick to jump set, he will occasionally get beat by some type of cross over step, but he is athletic enough to recover and reposition himself properly. Alt gets better as the game goes on and most importantly is reliable as a blindside blocker. While he isn’t the most powerful player, he makes it up with his athleticism and football IQ.
As a run blocker, Alt thrives when moving laterally. His ability to bend around the corner is freakish for his size, and his length allows him to attach to defenders in space. He is able to get out of his stance and close off angles. He is so athletic, Notre Dame will occasionally move him to the right side just so they can run right behind him. While I do believe his movement ability is perfect for a zone-based running team, gap schemes will be able to utilize that athleticism on GT counters and anything where he is pulling. If Alt catches a defender with his hands inside, he has shown the ability to take them into the earth. His finish is better than his knock back; at the point of contact he isn’t going to provide a Mike Alstott type of force, but he is capable of taking the defender for a ride. Since he is so eager out of his stance to gain proper hat placement, he will occasionally over-pursue allowing defenders to cross his face and disrupt the play behind the line of scrimmage. The good news is offensive line coaches would rather have to tell Alt to reel it in instead of trying to find ways to bring it out of him. Alt is the ideal left tackle for a zone based running scheme and will get picked extremely high because of what he does as a run-blocker.
In the NFL, Alt will start as a left tackle from day one. I believe he has the potential to be the best left tackle in the National Football League. Ideally, he goes to a zone based running scheme and a move the pocket type passing game (also known as a west coast offense). He reminds me a lot of Andrew Whitworth in his ability to move as well as he does for being as big and long as he is. I believe he’s going to be a good left tackle from day one, with rare upside. He is one of, if not the best players in the draft and won’t get out of the top five picks this year.
Feet + COD: 10.67/12 (Excellent)
Movement Ability in Space + Bend: 9.33/12 (Very Good)
Strain + Seal + Strength: 7.78/10 (Very Good)
Anchor + Sink: 7.78/10 (Very Good)
Football IQ: 7.78/10 (Very Good)
Mentality + Violence: 6.67/10 (Good)
Point of Contact + Punch: 5.33/8 (Good)
Recover + Poise: 6.22/8 (Very Good)
Patience + Hands: 4.67/6 (Very Good)
Overall: 66.23/88 (.752)
Final Rating: Good Left Tackle
Pro Comparison: Andrew Whitworth
Scheme Fits: West Coast Offense
Draft Projection: Top Five Pick
Draft Grade: Top Three Player