Thursday , July 7 2022

Minnesota offensive tackle Daniel Faalele tips NFL combine scales at 6-foot-8, 384 pounds

INDIANAPOLIS — In a game that features some of the planet’s biggest and fastest people, Minnesota offensive tackle Daniel Faalele is officially one of the biggest players in NFL scouting combine history.

Faalele measured 6-foot-8 and weighed in at 384 pounds Friday. ESPN Stats & Information records that date to 2006 indicate Faalele is the heaviest player at the combine in that span and he is believed to be the heaviest player at the combine since Wisconsin’s Aaron Gibson weighed in at 386 pounds at the 1999 scouting combine.

Ole Miss’ Terrell Brown, who played just two games in his senior season, was not invited to the 2013 scouting combine, but measured 6-10, 388 pounds at the school’s on-campus pro day that year. Several scouts contacted Friday said Brown was the player most similar in stature to Faalele that they had seen.

Faalele said during an interview session Thursday he weighed 426 pounds when he arrived at Minnesota, where he went on to play in 34 games, with 31 starts.

“I would say how athletic I am for my size, and how powerful I am,” Faalele said Thursday when asked how his size impacted how he plays. “Just how strong I am. Being a bigger body I have longer arms, so just using those intangibles to my advantage.”

Asked what the biggest challenge of playing at his size, Faalele added: “The biggest challenge is always pad level. I can always get lower. That’s something I’ve worked on throughout my career.”

Faalele, a native of Melbourne, Australia, said in Indianapolis this week he has taken inspiration from fellow Aussie Jordan Mailata, a Philadelphia Eagles tackle. The Eagles list Mailata at 6-8, 365 pounds.

“Just seeing how he plays is motivational and his story, kind of similar story,” Faalele said.

ESPN’s Mel Kiper Jr. and Todd McShay both have Faalele ranked as the sixth-best offensive tackle in the draft.

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