COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Fewer than two years ago, Reid Fragel was a Big Ten tight end. Today, he's an NFL offensive lineman.
Ohio State's starting right tackle for all 12 games of its undefeated season in 2012 was selected by the Cincinnati Bengals in the seventh round (240th overall) of Saturday's NFL Draft.
After arriving in Columbus in 2009 as a three-star tight end prospect, Fragel spent three seasons backing up Jake Stoneburner at that position. A starter in nine games in the first three years of his college career, Fragel caught 14 passes for 185 yards and a touchdown while playing tight end.
Upon Urban Meyer's arrival following the 2011 season, the decision was made to convert Fragel into an offensive lineman. After a preseason-long battle with then-freshman Taylor Decker, the Grosse Pointe Farms, Mich. native took ahold of the Buckeyes' starting right tackle position, which he held onto for the remainder of the season.
As seen evident on Friday night, Fragel's position switch paid dividends for the 6-foot-8, 310-pounder. With just one season on the offensive line under his belt, it is possible that Fragel will eventually develop into a starting left tackle at the professional level.
"Reid just has a tremendous amount of talent," OSU offensive line coach Ed Warinner said. "That's why he's being heavily sought out in the NFL."
Fragel's draft stock was helped in part to a stellar outing at February's NFL Scouting Combine, where he placed in the top five of offensive linemen in three separate categories, including bench press (33 reps), vertical jump (30 inches), and broad jump (113 inches).
Converted tight ends like Fragel -- such as Joe Thomas and Eric Winston -- have found recent success as offensive tackles in the NFL.