Rodger Saffold – Offensive Tackle – Indiana
Height: 6-4⅝ | Weight: 316 | 40-Time: 5.20
He never left the starting lineup after sliding in at left tackle midway through his true freshman campaign. Saffold was the 2009 Don Howell “Outstanding Offensive Lineman” Award recipient, given to the outstanding offensive lineman in memory of Don Howell. He started 41 games and appeared in 42 in his career.
2009 Honors: Selected second team All-Big Ten by the conference coaches and named honorable mention by the league’s media … earned second team All-Big Ten recognition from Phil Steele’s magazine.
2009 (Senior): Team captain started all 12 games at left tackle … anchored an offensive line that allowed just 16 sacks on the season, a total that ranked second in the Big Ten and shared 28th nationally … front five surrendered one sack per 27.5 pass attempts, which ranked second in the Big Ten … Saffold allowed just one sack on the year … Hoosiers finished second in conference games only with 262.4 passing yards per game … also ended year fourth in overall games and 35th nationally with 247.9 passing yards per game … team rushed for over 180 yards on four occasions, including 197 yards at No. 23 Michigan and 196 yards vs. Purdue … 197 yards were IU’s second-highest rushing total in 60 all-time games vs. Michigan … selected a game captain five times.
2008 (Junior): Started all 10 games in which he appeared at left tackle … battled a back injury the entire season and missed two games with a knee injury … the Hoosiers broke the 2,000-yard rushing mark (2,003) for the second straight year, the first time since 2000 and 2001 an IU team produced back-to-back 2,000-yard rushing seasons … Indiana averaged 4.5 yards per carry and carded 19 rushing scores, its best numbers since 2001 (5.5, 33) … the team rushed for over 250 yards four times with a season-best 297 yards in the season-opening win over Western Kentucky.
2007 (Sophomore): Started all 13 games at left tackle … helped the Hoosiers average 157.4 yards per game on the ground and 393.8 yards of total offense, the highest averages in each category since 2001 … the Hoosiers also set a new school record with 412 points and finished second in school history averaging 31.7 points per game … a key component of an IU rushing attack that went over 100 yards nine times and over 200 yards five times.
2006 (Freshman): Played in seven games, starting six times … started at left tackle for six straight contests, beginning with the Hoosiers’ game against Wisconsin … in those six starts, the Hoosier running game topped 100 yards five times and averaged 138.5 per contest.
Prep/Personal: Offensive tackle and defensive end at Bedford High School for head coach Brian Staats … a 2005 first team All-Lake Erie League, all-district and honorable mention all-state selection at the same high school that produced former Wisconsin and NFL wide receivers Chris Chambers and Lee Evans … recorded 18 tackles as a defensive end … also notched a 94-percent blocking efficiency as a senior … competed in the 2006 Ohio North-South All-Star Game … parents are Rodger Saffold II and Angela Coopridge … born on June 6, 1988, Rodger P. Saffold III is a SPEA management major … Rodger II played at the University of Iowa in the mid-1970s.
Adequate height — Good bulk — Excellent athleticism — Natural knee bender — Shows nimble feet and polished footwork — Nice balance and agility — Slides well laterally — Plays with great leverage — Able to protect the edge — Understands positioning and angles — Mobile with terrific range — Offers some positional versatility — Tough — A hard worker — Leader — Lots of experience versus quality competition.
Doesn’t have real long arms — Not very strong or powerful — Won’t get a big push in the run game — Isn’t overly stout at the point of attack — Lacks a violent initial punch — Feet will go dead on contact at times — Does not always finish blocks — Durability might be a concern.
Was a four-year starter for the Hoosiers — Played left tackle in college but could also project inside to guard at the next level — Father, Rodger II, played football at Iowa in the mid-1970’s — Named 2nd Team All-Big Ten in 2009 — A team captain as a senior — Attended the same Ohio high school as Chris Chambers (Kansas City Chiefs) and Lee Evans (Buffalo Bills) — Was hampered by knee and back injuries as a junior — Arguably the star of this year’s East-West Shrine Game and shot up draft boards after that performance — A finesse blocker whose best fit might come in a zone blocking scheme — Underrated prospect with both the physical tools and intangibles to be a starter in the NFL.