Day 1 prospect: Samuel Cosmi, Offensive Tackle, Texas
Samuel Cosmi looks to build his draft stock in 2020 by improving from his impressive 2019 season. After redshirting his freshman year, he entered the season, starting all 27 games for the Longhorns over the last two seasons, 26 of those being at left tackle. In 2019, Cosmi earned Second Team All-Big 12 and was an honorable mention Big 12 Offensive Lineman of the Year. Heading into the 2020 season, the redshirt junior was named preseason First Team All-Big 12.
For Cosmi to put his name in the hat of the 2021 NFL Draft prospects, he will likely want to hear that he is a possible day one option from teams. If he does find his way into the first round, it will likely happen in the back half. Unlike other offensive tackles who will be taken earlier, including Oregon’s Penei Sewell, Cosmi is still a somewhat raw prospect who still has improvements needed to excel as a full-time starter in the NFL.
Standing at 6’7″ and 310 pounds, Cosmi has room to put on some additional weight. Adding 15-20 pounds shouldn’t be a problem when looking at his build. He’s still raw when it comes to pass protection in several areas, including technique, play strength, and timing. All three are areas that can be coached up. Putting on additional mass as he matures will go a long way of helping him deal with power rushes. Cleaning up his hand technique to become more consistent with timing and placement is another developmental trait.
Being a raw prospect, what makes Cosmi worthy of a first-round pick? One of the traits that can’t be taught is athleticism. The Longhorn offensive tackle has excellent athleticism and mobility for an offensive lineman at all three levels. Lack of play strength due to his size has forced him to win in other ways. That means beating defenders to spots on the field, whether pass protecting or in run blocking.
Cosmi is a highly athletic and intelligent player at the offensive tackle position. His advantage in the run game comes by getting in front of defenders to wall off run lanes instead of winning with just power. If he falls behind in pass protection due to footwork, he has the ability to recover quickly. Picking up stunts and twists consistently and always looking for additional work in the passing game.
The Chiefs want to run an outside zone rushing attack but have lacked the offensive line talent to succeed in the last couple of years. Since Mitch Morse left for Buffalo, the offense has lacked that athletic lineman that can either pull to one side as a lead blocker in gap concepts or climb to the second level quickly and sustain blocks for bigger gains in the running game. Not only does the redshirt junior have the athleticism, but he secures blocks and rarely allows defenders to escape his grasp once he latches on.
While he might not be an immediate starter, Cosmi would be an excellent fit for Kansas City. The Chiefs could let him sit behind Schwartz and Fisher for the 2021 season as he develops his technique and builds some mass to fill out his frame. Both starting tackles are signed through 2021, but after that, they both become free agents. Finding the future tackles to protect the long-term investment at quarterback is a must, and Cosmi could be a high ceiling project to work opposite of Niang down the road.