I spend most of my time at the Senior Bowl practices following skill players around the field. I don’t watch a lot of line play in Mobile. Even so, it was difficult not to hear about Central Michigan left tackle Eric Fisher. The 6-foot-7, 305-pound Fisher was one of the most praised players on the field last week. The most noteworthy praise came from a great source that wasn’t even in Mobile.
Larry Zierlein is a football lifer. He has been an offensive line coach for the Buffalo Bills (2006), Cleveland Browns (2001-2004), and Pittsburgh Steelers (2007-2009). He has also coached the offensive lines of the Houston Cougars (1978-1986), Tulane Green Wave (1988-1990 and 1995-1996), LSU (1993-1994), and the University of Cincinnati (1997-2000).
The reason the last name Zierlein may also be familiar to you is that his son Lance is a sports radio host based in Houston, as well as a blogger for The Sideline View. I had a brief conversation with the younger Zierlein after practice and it was there that he told me what his father thought of Fisher. The elder Zierlein said that he would look at the rest of the tape his son sent him, but it didn’t take him long to realize that Fisher is what coaches call a “six-play” player -– a prospect who you can tell will deliver the goods on a consistent basis as a professional after watching just six plays.
It’s little wonder that a player earning this type of praise from a veteran offensive line coach has been compared to a left tackle like 49ers lineman Joe Staley, who is also from Central Michigan. Staley is known as one of the most athletic linemen in the game, and this high level of athleticism is also Fisher’s calling card. Read the rest at Football Outsiders.