Skip to main content

News | Washington Commanders -

Five things to know about Brandon Coleman

MicrosoftTeams-image (30)

The Washington Commanders added some depth and competition up front by drafting TCU tackle Brandon Coleman with the No. 67 overall pick. Here are five things to know about the newest addition to the offensive line room.

1. He took a winding path to find his natural position.

Coleman grew up playing basketball but always wanted to try football. He spent most of his childhood in Berlin, Germany, though, so the closest he got to the sport was watching games on television and hearing stories from his dad, who played the sport in high school.

Coleman's first real opportunity to play football came when he and his family moved to the United States to settle down in Denton, Texas. He was about 6-foot-4, so many of classmates encouraged him to try out.

His first position: quarterback.

Coleman didn't know enough about the sport, so that experiment lasted about two weeks. His coaches decided that he should move to the defensive line -- a much easier position to learn. He spent a year on the junior varsity squad before transitioning to the offensive line as a senior.

Coleman initially didn't get much interest from colleges as a three-star recruit. He enrolled at Trinity Valley Community College, where he spent two years with the Cardinals. He quickly became one of the top JUCO prospects in the country, ranking No. 7 in the state and No. 7 nationally for his position.

2. He was one of the most athletic offensive linemen at the combine.

Offensive linemen aren't known for their athleticism as much as skill players like wide receivers or running backs, but don't get it twisted; it's an important skill set to have when you're matching up against pass-rushers.

There were few offensive line prospects in this year's draft who stood out more than Coleman at the combine.

Coleman was one of the most athletic prospects in Indianapolis, earning a Relative Athletic Score (RAS) of 9.97/10. Just as a reference of how rare that is, Coleman's RAS ranks fifth out of 1,524 offensive guards (we'll dive a little more into his position later) from 1987-2024.

Coleman had the fifth-fastest 40 times among all offensive linemen, crossing the finish line in 4.99 seconds. He had a vertical jump of 34 inches, which was better than eventual first-round picks like Troy Fauntanu, Taliese Fuaga and Olu Fashanu. Add that to a 9-foot-6 broad jump, and it's easy to see why Coleman received the highest RAS of all the Commanders' picks.

That doesn't guarantee that Coleman will have a successful career, but he does have the traits to do so.

3. He's got experience at guard...but he's better at tackle.

Coleman moved around the offensive line a lot while playing for the Horned Frogs. He got his first start at right guard during his sophomore year before moving to the left, where he started seven of the final eight games that season. He moved to left tackle in 2022 and started all 15 games. He split time at guard and tackle in 2023. listed him as a guard during the draft process -- probably because of his shorter frame -- but most of his experience is at tackle. And the numbers show that he's far better at the position.

Although Coleman's Second Team All-Big 12 selection came last season, Pro Football Focus' metrics indicate his best season was in 2022, when he was exclusively the starting left tackle. His offensive (80.6) and run blocking (81) grades were the best of his college career. His pass blocking grade was the third lowest in four seasons, but he only allowed two sacks on 421 pass-blocking snaps.

What's more, almost 60% of his 2,120 career snaps were at left tackle.

Position flexibility is always important in the NFL, where there are only 53 players on an active roster, but it seems like the Commanders were right to believe that he can play tackle at the next level.

4. He digs the vibe in Washington.

Coleman was speechless when he got the call from general manager Adam Peters. He didn't have a preference on which team he wanted to draft him, but he's glad that it ended up being Washington. He felt an immediate connection with them from the moment he arrived at the facility for a visit.

"Love the coaches and the vibe. That was really great and I'm just excited to be here."

That sentiment falls in line with how many of the Commanders' draft picks view the coaching staff. They praised head coach Dan Quinn and the staff he had put together, saying how they are all dedicated to doing whatever necessary to help them succeed.

To Coleman, that made Washington feel like home.

"[The] Coaches really cared about the players," Coleman said "When I met with [Offensive Line] Coach [Bobby] Johnson, the way he was coaching all that stuff, it just really felt right. And I loved the way that they were taking care of us in the strength room. You know, the coach was straight up and knew that they were there to work, you know, while also taking care of us. And I just was really excited about all that stuff."

Coleman was born in Virginia, his dad's home state, and spent two months in the area before moving to Germany. So, in a sense, it really is like coming home for Coleman.

Check out the top photo of the Washington Commanders' newest offensive tackle, Brandon Coleman.

5. He's going to compete as a rookie.

Outside of playing tackle, no one knows exactly what Coleman's role is going to be for the Commanders. They do have a need at left tackle, but Washington has other, more experienced options they can put in the starting lineup while Coleman develops.

It sounds like Washington is going to give Coleman a shot, though.

"Brandon I think will come in and compete just like everybody else," Peters said. "And we certainly think he has what it takes to be a tackle in this league. And he's got the feet, he's got the speed, he's got the strength, and he's got the intelligence and he's got the right mindset and so he'll come in and compete just like everybody else."

The Commanders have struggled at offensive line for the past two seasons. There are some promising players, like guard Sam Cosmi, but the collective position group has ranked near the top in terms of sacks allowed.

Coleman might need to sit a year before he's ready, but depending on how he grows, he could be a long-term answer at the position. All Coleman wants is to show what he can do.

"I'm just excited to get a chance and be able to compete at the Commanders and being in the NFL."

Related Content