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Mankins rates among top guards

In his weekly Sunday Blitz column for the National Football Post, Dan Pompei dives into the value of offensive guards, specifically relating to the draft, where two prospects -- Chance Warmack and Jonathan Cooper -- are considered among the best available, regardless of position.

He follows the discussion up with his own take on the top eight guards in the NFL, placing the Patriots' Logan Mankins seventh.

Writes Pompei:

One front office man thought the five-time Pro Bowler was declining a bit at the age of 31, but another thought he still was a pretty special player. “He’s tough as nails, a real physical guy,” one said.

Mankins was limited to just 10 games during the 2012 season and played virtually all of the previous year on a torn ACL. While his play perhaps has not been up to the level it was in 2010 and earlier over the past two seasons, the feeling here is that Mankins has the capabilities to be as good as any guard in football; health and consistency play a big part in that.

As Pompei alludes to, Mankins' toughness and physicality set him apart. Those are strong suits of his game that have earned him the respect of his teammates.

To read the piece in its entirety, click HERE.