One of the most important cogs in the Iowa offense is up next in our countdown to the kickoff of the 2019 football season — offensive tackle Tristan Wirfs.
From: Mount Vernon, Iowa (Mount Vernon HS)
Size: 6-foot-5, 320 pounds
2019 Projection: Starting right tackle
There is a very real possibility that this season is the last we see of Wirfs in the Black and Gold.
2020 Mock Drafts out there have him going everywhere from the Top-10 to the mid-second round, but the point is this — Wirfs will get a chance at the next level, it’s just a matter of where and when. If Wirfs has a solid year, he’ll likely jet for the pros (as he should) following the 2019 season.
Get your money, dude.
There is plenty of hype going into next season after a fine 2018 campaign that ended him being named honorable mention all-conference by both the coaches and media. I think that was about right, as Wirfs was solid (though sometimes unspectacular) throughout the season.
Another year in the weight room and with the Iowa strength and conditioning staff should certainly help. I mean, just look at this 450 pound hang clean. LOOK AT IT.
A) Those were solid reps at heavy weight. B) He did it *four* times. C) IT WAS A FOUR HUNDRED AND FIFTY FREAKING POUND CLEAN.
Alright, the caps lock button is safely off, but there’s plenty of reason to be excited. As a blocker, Wirfs is certainly in the mold of former Hawkeye offensive lineman — good feet, nearly always good leverage, athletic, but most importantly mechanically sound.
I still think there’s a little bit to be desired in both pass blocking and run blocking and I do not think the nitpicking is unfair. There are some plays where Wirfs gets beat, though no player is going to be perfect 100 percent of the time.
But, again, there’s so much to like.
As I've been studying this Iowa offense in 2018, I can't help but notice RT Tristan Wirfs. True junior in 2019. His size, power, and hand usage are outstanding: pic.twitter.com/NRGN17luUQ— Brandon Thorn (@BrandonThornNFL) April 27, 2019
I mean that first clip in that video is simply incredible. Takes the defender halfway down the field. And his pass blocking in the other bits is also solid, and really helps showcase his mobility.
Despite his size he’s very athletic, as we all noticed with several run downs on interceptions and of course that game-ending run against Penn State.
The play doesn’t go exactly his way here, but, again, you can see how solid he is at moving guys around and opening running lanes. It’s just a job to watch.
So yeah, things are looking up for Iowa along its offensive line this year, especially with the talented Wirfs and Alaric Jackson. I have to imagine lining up against a mean Hawkeye defensive front has only helped and it should not be too long before we see these guys at the next level.
Grass is green, the sky is blue and Iowa’s going to turn out quality linemen.