For the last two seasons, Bryan Stork has started at center for Florida State, where his All-American abilities helped propel the Seminoles to back-to-back years among the NCAA‘s top 10 scoring offensives. Now a year later, and 10 pounds heavier, the fourth-round draft pick should look to strengthen the New England Patriots‘ steamrolling scoring machine, where for the past 10 years, New England has ranked in the top 10 in NFL scoring offense.
The magnets on the magnetic depth chart have Stork listed as a center, but the rookie who could pass for Logan Mankins‘ younger brother is a quarter-ton worth of versatility. Stork should not look to see much action at his listed position, where the ever-durable Ryan Wendell has snapped the pigskin to Tom Brady for the last two seasons, as well as 14 games in 2011. Wendell also signed a two-year extension this March, so unless an injury happens, Stork — the 2013 Rimington Trophy Winner (the top center in all of college football) — will have to find work elsewhere.
He did work elsewhere in Tallahassee, where he was recruited as a tight end and transitioned to offensive line as a red shirt in 2009. Stork worked in as a right guard a bit as a freshman, then took over full-time right guard duties the next year. Focusing toward the 2012 season as a tackle, Stork converted to center, and the All-American accolades followed. Stork helped shutdown the likes of Pittsburgh‘s Aaron Donald and Clemson‘s Vic Beasley, two other All-Americans, in two crushing ‘Nole wins during their 2013 national championship season.
Offensive line might be where Bill Belichick drafts best, with all five projected starters (Nate Solder, Mankins, Wendell, Dan Connolly and Sebastian Vollmer) combining for 28 professional seasons, all in New England. Stork’s adaptability to play anywhere on the offensive line was likely a large key to why the 6-foot-4, 310 pound center was drafted, and should he play to his abilities, look for Stork to play a role on one of the best offensive lines in football in 2014.