Offensive linemen are the most tight-knit guys you could ever meet. Most of the time they are big and humble, but come with plenty of personality. They do everything as a group and are a great foundation to the overall team aspect of professional football. Despite the fact these are some of the biggest guys you could ever see, they need to be quick with their feet. All it takes is a defensive lineman to step on an ankle or roll up awkwardly on their leg and just like that their season could be over.

But with the 2018 season on the horizon we’re now in fantasy football preparation mode. Do O-lines collect points? No. However, these big fellas matter. A strong offensive line helps the run game. Having two reliable tackles to stop the outside pass rush are key to protecting the quarterback. Offensive lines should garner some consideration when you’re drafting your team so make sure you don’t overlook these units on draft day.

  1. Philadelphia Eagles

The Eagles are terrifying, simply put. They’re coming off a Super Bowl victory where Carson Wentz didn’t even play due to a season-ending injury. Yet the offensive line was crucial to the Eagles success last season. Philly averaged 29.0 points per game, 130.8 rushing yards per game, and 247.1 passing yards per game. All those stats were top eight in the NFL. The Eagles are threats to repeat not just because of Carson Wentz ’s return, but also because of consistency in name recognition on this offensive line.

Names to Know: Jason Kelce (2017 All-Pro first team member) at center and Lane Johnson (another 2017 All-Pro first team member) at tackle are two of the more recognizable names on this line, but don’t forget about Brandon Brooks at right guard who didn’t allow a single sack up the middle last season in pass protection. The biggest concern for the Eagles offensive line will be the health of Jason Peters . He tore his ACL and MCL last October and was unavailable for Philadelphia’s Super Bowl run. He’s also 36 years old now, but he should be ready for training camp. But at his age and coming back from injury, how effective can he be? Here’s how the Eagles stand on the depth chart:






Jason Peters

Stefen Wisniewski

Jason Kelce

Brandon Brooks

Lane Johnson

Halapoulivaati Vaitai

Chance Warmack

Isaac Seumalo

Darrell Greene

Taylor Hart

Jordan Mailata

Aaron Evans

Jon Toth


Matt Pryor



Ian Park


Toby Weathersby

The Scheme: While most of the media clamors for Philadelphia’s prospensity for the run-pass option (RPO’s), Pro Football Focus found something a little more intriguing about Philadelphia’s running attack: The Trap. Nobody executed the trap rushing attack more often or more effectively than the Eagles last season. To sum it up, this rushing technique is meant to keep defenses off balance and it’s especially useful if you think the opposing defense is catching on to your play calling. This is a good slap in the face kind of running play. PFF defines the trap as “any run that leaves an interior defensive lineman unblocked by the adjacent offensive linemen for another pulling lineman, tight end or fullback to block. The key is to catch that unblocked player off guard and have him take himself out of the play almost on his own.” Nobody benefitted from this play more than the Eagles considering they ran the most trap plays last year (43), gained the most yards off it (280), and registered the most first downs via the trap (10).

A good example is in the attached video. If you skip ahead to the 2:05 mark you’ll see the Eagles use a trap play to burn the Patriots in this year’s Super Bowl. Once the play starts Stefen Wisniewski pulls from his left guard position as left tackle Halapoulivaati Vaitai picks up Marquis Flowers while James Harrison is left unblocked and out of the play. Instead, Wisniewski pulls to the right and into the hole that was made and picks up a block on Patrick Chung to help spring Jay Ajayi for a 20+ yard run. Its simple, yet effective trickery like this that helped the Eagles march through the playoffs, but don’t forget this is a well-balanced attack that can win on the ground and through the air.

  1. New Orleans Saints

This ranking may come as a surprise to most people, but the Saints surrendered the fewest total pressures in all of the NFL last season. They may not have the recognizable named from the All-Pro list like the Eagles do, but make no mistake about it this is a great offensive line and certainly one of the most-improved groups last year as Saints running backs averaged 2.56 yards before contact which was second-best in the league. The Saints were also first in the league in total yards per game, yards per play, rushing yards per attempt, sacks per pass play, and fourth down efficiency. They were also top five in points per game, rushing yards per game, and first downs per game.

Names to Know: The Saints lost Zach Strief to retirement in the offseason and they lost Andrus Peat to a broken leg in the postseason, but he’s expected to be ready in time for training camp. New Orleans will have the rare luxury of having their five starting linemen from a year ago: Terron Armstead , Andrus Peat , Max Unger, Larry Warford, and Ryan Ramczyk. Ramczyk, especially, was a pleasant surprise for the Saints last year in his rookie season. A year ago at this time Unger and Armstead were both dealing with injuries and their status heading into training camp wasn’t optimistic although they came around and played well. With their best players healthy and Ramczyk looking to build upon his rookie season it’s possible that the Saints O-Line tops Philly by the end of 2018.






Terron Armstead

Andrus Peat

Max Unger

Larry Warford

Ryan Ramczyk

Michael Ola

John Fullington

Will Clapp

Jermon Bushrod

Rick Leonard


Trevor Darling

Josh LeRibeus

Landon Turner




Cameron Tom

Andrew Tiller




Jack Allen



The Scheme: The Saints had such an explosive offense last season where they totaled over 2,000 rushing yards and over 4,300 passing yards. That’s a testament to the overall talent on offense and it helps when a quarterback like Drew Brees is making it all happen. But Alvin Kamara , Mark Ingram , Michael Thomas , and Ted Ginn Jr. all had great seasons. The offensive line never fully committed to one particular blocking scheme. However, the Saints utilized man/power blocking schemes the second-most in the league last year and they averaged 4.3 yards per attempt on said runs. They were able to face up and block man-to-man in power blocking on short yardage plays and were effective when Ingram or Kamara ran to the outside looking to cut back upfield in zone blocking. Additionally, going back to what was mentioned earlier in regards to sacks per pass play; this is because the Saints offensive line gave Brees ample time to make the best play downfield. If it was a short yardage pass Brees would get rid of it quickly, if it was a play that needed time to develop then the tackles would ward off the defensive ends. This is all due to giving up the fewest amount of pressures in the league. With this group being healthy heading into training camp, expectations are sky high for this group in 2018.

  1. Tennessee Titans

The Titans came into the 2017 season projected as the top offensive line in the league in last year’s draft guide. Ranking them third isn’t a knock on them by any means, but they did struggle to meet expectations at times. Plus, other teams were better and more consistent. The Eagles won the Super Bowl on the backs of a great O-Line and the Saints exceeded expectations greatly. The Titans are still great, let’s be clear about that they could very well finish as the top O-Line in football by season’s end.

Names to Know: The Titans locked up the offensive line a little bit by re-signing right guard Josh Kline in the offseason. Across the line they’re one of the more well-balanced groups in the league. Taylor Lewan was an All-Pro tackle last season and a two-time pro bowler and Jack Conklin was All-Pro in 2016. These two holding down the edges contribute to the great pass blocking for the Titans offense. Josh Kline , Ben Jones, and Quinton Spain round out the interior offensive line that allowed the Titans to boast one of the best rushing attacks in the NFL with 116.7 rushing yards per game (ninth overall), and 4.3 rushing yards per attempt (eighth overall).






Taylor Lewan

Quinton Spain

Ben Jones

Josh Kline

Jack Conklin

Tyler Marz

Kevin Pamphile

Nico Falah

Xavier Su’a-Filo

Dennis Kelly

Matt Diaz

Cody Wichmann


Corey Levin

John Theus

Elijah Nkansah




Aaron Stinnie

The Scheme: Tennessee catered more towards zone blocking than man blocking or power blocking as some may call it. Pro Football Focus notes that the Titans averaged 2.12 yards before contact on zone running calls, which was third best in the league. They were particularly good on inside zone plays. On 129 attempts last year they averaged 4.8 yards per carry and 2.2 yards before contact according to Pro Football Focus. Oddly enough though the Titans averaged 2.5 fewer rush attempts in 2017 compared to 2016. And it isn’t like they were putting the ball in Marcus Mariota ’s hands either as he had just two more total pass attempts in 2017 than the year prior. The Titans signed Dion Lewis in the offseason to pair with Derrick Henry in the running game. Perhaps this is a signal of Tennessee’s goal of running the ball more in which case we can expect to see more zone runs.

  1. Atlanta Falcons

The 2017 NFL season was a bit of a disappointment for the Atlanta Falcons. After coming close to winning Super Bowl LI the Falcons made the playoffs last season, but it was a bit of a frustrating season offensively for the dirty birds. It’s very rare that an incoming offensive coordinator has to come in and learn the offense left behind by his predecessor, but that’s the situation Steve Sarkisian was in exactly one year ago. But little-to-no blame can be placed on the offensive line. If the Falcons had a weakness to address in the offseason they did so on the interior offensive line by signing Brandon Fusco . Fusco played in a very similar offense with San Francisco last season under former Falcons offensive coordinator, Kyle Shanahan. The Falcons were somewhat middle-of-the-road when it came to pass blocking as Matt Ryan faced pressure one out of every three drop backs, but this offense didn’t use many combinations meaning there is consistency. Add in Fusco who is already familiar with this offense and there’s potential for this group to finish as one of the best offensive lines in the league.

Names to Know: The interior line had some issues last season especially once they lost Andy Levitre towards the end of the season. But the team still boasts consistency with Alex Mack and center with Jake Matthews and Ryan Schraeder holding down the outside at tackle. Matthews has had his growing pains, but he’s heading into a contract season and he’ll be looking to perform at his best to earn a big contract after this season.






Jake Matthews

Andy Levitre

Alex Mack

Brandon Fusco

Ryan Schraeder

Ty Sambrailo

Ben Garland

Sean Harlow

Wes Schweitzer

Austin Pasztor


Salesi Uhatafe

JC Hassenauer

Jamil Douglas

Daniel Brunskill




Matt Gono


The Scheme: It’s no secret that the Falcons run one of the best zone blocking schemes in the league. It took a while to get the ball rolling with Kyle Shanahan but this style of offense got them to the Super Bowl in 2016. No team ran more zone blocking plays on the ground than the Falcons last season and they found success averaging nearly 4.5 yards per play on these runs. Hopefully with a full year under his belt trying to run this offense does Sarkisian a lot of good. The offense struggled at times last year and a lot of the blame was put on Sark. The good news is that Chris Morgan, the offensive line coach, knows what he’s doing. Last year, despite all the pressure Ryan faced, the Falcons O-line gave up just 24 sacks, which was the third-fewest in the league. The zone blocking helped the offense break 230 big plays (plays for 10+ yards), which was fifth most in the league. There’s plenty of reason to assume this group only improves on what they did last year.

       5. Pittsburgh Steelers

The Steelers may not be as young or as talented as the Cowboys, but this is still one of the better offensive lines in the league that can tout a total of ten Pro Bowl selections from the entire group. Similar to Dallas, they dealt with a couple injuries and some suspensions that kept this group from finishing as an elite unit in 2017. Yet Ben Roethlisberger was still sacked on only 3.6% of his pass attempts last year, which was the second-lowest sack rate in his career. Only in 2016 was he sacked at a lower rate, but he had 50 less pass attempts that year compared to 2017. All in all, it was a decent performance in 2017 with plenty of reason for optimism heading into this year.

Names to Know: David DeCastro is easily the biggest asset to the Steelers offensive line. The 2012 first round pick has made the Pro Bowl the last three seasons and made the NFL’s All-Pro team in 2015 and 2017. Maurkice Pouncey, like DeCastro, has quite the resume himself with six Pro Bowl selections and surprisingly enough Pouncey will only be 29 years old at the start of the season. That’s one of the perks of being drafted at the ripe age of 20. Alejandro Villanueva had somewhat of a disappointing year considering he gave up 46 pressures at left tackle, but was somehow still named to the Pro Bowl. Similar to Villanueva, Ramon Foster had a pretty bad year himself following a 2016 season where he gave up just one sack with an overall grade of 87.1 according to Pro Football Focus. That grade dropped heavily in 2017 to 48.1 so hopefully age isn’t getting the best of him.






Alejandro Villanueva

Ramon Foster

Maurkice Pouncey

David DeCastro

Marcus Gilbert

Bryce Harris

BJ Finney

Parker Collins

Matt Feiler

Chukwuma Okorafor

Jake Rodgers

Patrick Morris

Patrick Morris

Joe Cheek

Larson Graham


RJ Prince


Chris Schleuger


The Scheme: The Steelers have an array of talented players on their roster. Le’Veon Bell, Antonio Brown , and JuJu Smith-Schuster are the more notable players that Big Ben likes to get the ball to. As far as the run game goes, the Steelers offensive line wasn’t necessarily elite but they’re still better than most teams in the league. 1.46 yards before contact doesn’t do the offensive line justice, but this group is elite when it comes to pass blocking. Take away the one bad performance against Jacksonville last October and Big Ben threw just nine interceptions in 14 games. For the offensive line, this is a group that dealt with an injury to Marcus Gilbert and sub-par performances on the left side of the line from Villanueva and Foster. If they can avoid disastrous injuries this season, the Steelers are capable of finishing as a top five offensive line.

Update (8/18): Ramon Foster was carted off the field earlier in training camp hasn't practiced since. The good news for Pittsburgh fans is that the injury isn't believed to be serious and he will return in time for Week 1. But Foster is 32 years old and in the final year of his contract with Pittsburgh. For now, B.J. Finney has filled in for Foster.

       6. Oakland Raiders

The Raiders offensive line was somewhat disappointing in 2017 compared to 2016’s impressive season. Oakland running backs averaged 1.42 yards before contact and while this is normally a reflection of the run blocking up front, it’s also worth mentioning the Raiders didn’t have an explosive, quick running back last year. After all they let a 31-year-old Marshawn Lynch carry the ball over 200 times last season. But while 2017 was a bit disappointing it can’t be forgotten how good this group performed in 2016 and there is still potential for that kind of a performance from them.

Names to Know: The progress of Kolton Miller and Brandon Parker will be worth monitoring up through training camp. Miller was Oakland’s first round pick in April and Parker was their third round pick. The front office was clearly a bit worried about the offensive line’s performance and invested in some youth. Donald Penn , Kelechi Osmele, and Rodney Hudson have combined for seven Pro Bowl selections. Last season Hudson was by far the best performer on this line as he allowed just a whopping three pressures all season long. Perhaps a tertiary concern for the Raiders heading into 2018 will be Donald Penn ’s age. Currently he’s the only projected starter over 30 years old (he’s now 35) and they may be cautious of a potential dropoff in performance this year.






Donald Penn

Kelechi Osemele

Rodney Hudson

Gabe Jackson

Kolton Miller

David Sharpe

Denver Kirkland

James Stone

Jon Feliciano

Vadal Alexander

Brandon Parker

Ian Silberman


Jordan Simmons

Breno Giacomini


Cameron Hunt



Jylan Ware

The Scheme: With Jon Gruden reclaiming the reigns of the Oakland Raiders he’s made comments about trying to throw the game back in time. And this could be somewhat disastrous considering the team parted ways with Michael Crabtree in order to bring in an aging Jordy Nelson . Additionally they restructured Marshawn Lynch ’s contract to lower his cap hit, but also guaranteed him more money. The Raiders signed Derek Carr ier and Lee Smith , two blocking tight ends, while also signing fullback Keith Smith . It seems like Gruden wants to run a bruising powerful offense without spreading too much of it out. While the general trend is that defenses may be getting smaller and quicker in size, Gruden seems to be building for a powerful offense that will attempt to bowl opposing teams over. There may not be too many zone blocking plays. Rather there could be more dump off passes to whoever is the running back in the backfield at the time, be it Marshawn Lynch or Doug Martin .

       7. Los Angeles Rams

Left tackle is arguably the most important position in football. The only position that could be more important is quarterback. So you tell me, what’s more important? The quarterback, or the position that protects the quarterback’s blindside? Food for thought! But this is a small concern for the Rams, or at least it should be heading into 2018. A more detailed breakdown is coming shortly in regards to this little tease. Now the Rams had the most improved offense going from 2016 to 2017. The offense was much more explosive and the offensive line in particular, performed very well. The Rams averaged 14 points per game in 2016 and they doubled that average with 28.9 points per game in 2017. Can the Rams improve upon last year’s performance? It’s possible, but the success hinders on the performance of the offensive line.

Names to Know: Now the reason for the concern at left tackle is because Andrew Whitworth is 36 years old right now, but he turns 37 in December. While he started the season playing great he did have a very poor performance in the Rams lone playoff game against Atlanta back in January. Additionally, John Sullivan at center turns 33 in August. So age is a concern for Los Angeles and they couldn’t necessarily address it with top end talent in the draft. They didn’t have a first or second round pick this year, but oddly enough their first two picks of Joe Noteboom in the third round and Brian Allen in the fourth round should help provide some depth at left tackle and center: the two positions with age concerns.






Andrew Whitworth

Rodger Saffold

John Sullivan

Jamon Brown

Rob Havenstein

Cornelius Lucas

Austin Blythe

Brian Allen

Jake Eldrenkamp

Darrell Williams

Joe Noteboom

Jamil Demby

Aaron Neary

Jeremiah Kolone


The Scheme: While the Rams offense trudged along to poor numbers in 2016, Sean McVay brought an exciting attack to Los Angeles that saw the Rams become one of the better zone blocking teams in the league. McVay took some pages out of Mike Shanahan’s zone blocking playbook and it turned Todd Gurley back into the superstar everyone thought he could be. Pro Football Focus actually graded the Rams as the top outside zone rushing attack in the entire league last season. The big question is whether the two aging linemen can keep up with the pace and offensive scheme heading into 2018.

       8. Dallas Cowboys

Injuries and holes at certain positions played a significant role with the Cowboys offensive line last year. Tyron Smith dealt with some nagging injuries and replacing Doug Free and Ronald Leary proved to be challenging at times. However, this group still contributed to the Cowboys 135.6 rushing yards per game, which was good enough for second-most last season. This upcoming season could be quite challenging for this offensive front. With a passing game that looks entirely different it’s quite possible the Cowboys lean a little more on the run, which could lead to defenses stacking up to eight men in the box against their talented offensive line.

Names to Know: It’s hard to envision a world where the Cowboys offensive line isn’t ranked in the top five in the league. They’ve been one of the better units in the league for quite some time with a foundation built around Tyron Smith Travis Frederick , and Zack Martin . All three are under the age of 28 and have already combined for 13 Pro Bowl selections. La’el Collins struggled with the move to right tackle after Doug Free’s retirement after the 2016 season, but perhaps he’s in line for a better performance with a year under his belt at a new position. And the only notable hole on the offensive line was at left guard where the Cowboys went and drafted Connor Williams out of the University of Texas with their second round pick. Ultimately the Cowboys desperately need Tyron Smith to stay healthy. His absence was definitely felt last season against the Falcons when Adrian Clayborn repeatedly beat Chaz Green at left tackle for six sacks and two forced fumbles in one game. If the Cowboys can get a complete and healthy season out of this line they could resume their spot at the top of this list.






Tyron Smith

Connor Williams

Travis Frederick

Zack Martin

La’el Collins

Chaz Green

Kadeem Edwards

Marcus Martin

Joe Looney

Cameron Fleming

Jake Campos

Damien Mama


Dustin Stanton

Bryce Johnson

The Scheme: Following the 2016 season Dallas utilized one of the more efficient zone blocking schemes that catapulted Ezekiel Elliott to over 1,600 rushing yards in his first season. And it helps having a versatile interior line with Frederick and Martin to shift sideways and open up seams in the zone running game. The offense has been criticized at times for being a little too simple and predictable especially last season. Dak Prescott struggled in his sophomore campaign and Zeke averaged nearly a full yard less per rushing attempt in his second year. The passing game will look very different this year without Jason Witten and Dez Bryant . But the running game will be the same and should dominate with Zeke being available for a full season. This youthful offensive line stands to dominate once again in 2018.

Update (8/25): It takes a lot to actually change up rankings to the offensive line, and unfortunately that is the case for Dallas. Injuries to Zack Martin and La'el Collins as well as the unfortunate news regarding Travis Frederick's health will knock this offensive line down a little bit. You hope the best for Frederick as there is no timetable for his return.

Old Rank: 5       New Rank: 8

      9. Green Bay Packers

The Packers are an interesting group because they have two elite offensive tackles when both are healthy and playing at their best. They might be a little weak on the interior portion of the line, but despite that they’re rushing attack averaged 1.83 yards before contact, which was good enough for fifth-best in the league. Green Bay doesn’t seem too concerned with any interior offensive line issues. They didn’t make any big splashes in free agency to help the line and they used just one draft pick, a fifth rounder, on Cole Madison out of Washington State.

Names to Know: David Bakhtiari and Bryan Bulaga are the cornerstones of the offensive line. When these two are on the field there might not be a better offensive tackle duo in the league. Bulaga tore his ACL in November last year, but the front office is optimistic he’ll be ready in time for the start of the year. The Packers obviously need both their tackles healthy and playing well to keep Aaron Rodgers from suffering another season-altering injury. While Corey Linsley and Lane Taylor will likely hold their own at center and left guard respectively, right guard is a bit more wide open. Justin McCray graded poorly last season, but the Packers have depth at their disposal to insert a couple different guys during training camp and see who comes away with the job.






David Bakhtiari

Lane Taylor

Corey Linsley

Justin McCray

Bryan Bulaga

Jason Spriggs

Lucas Patrick

Dillon Day

Kofi Amichia

Kyle Murphy

Adam Pankey

Alex Light

Austin Davis

Cole Madison

Byron Bell




Ethan Cooper


The Scheme: The Packers are wiping the slate clean on offense. Sure 2017 was difficult because Aaron Rodgers suffered an injury that basically derailed the Packers chances at the playoffs, but the offense has gradually been performing worse. So now it’s a little unclear how the Packers will look on offense this year. There will be continuity on the offensive line since there aren’t too many new faces, but the team also signed tight end Jimmy Graham . He’s far from the player he was in New Orleans, but Seattle grossly misused him during his tenure there. But Joe Philbin returns to Green Bay as the offensive coordinator and both he and head coach Mike McCarthy are looking to rebuild the offense from scratch. The Packers also promoted James Campen to run game coordinator while also maintaining his responsibilities as the offensive line coach.

Update (8/18): David Bakhtiari and Bryan Bulaga seem like they're going to be 100% by the time the season starts. This is huge for Green Bay to have their offensive line completely healthy heading into the year. That was almost ruined with right guard Justin McCray left Thursday night's game with a calf injury. Fortunately the Packers dodged a bullet and the injury is only minor. His progress will be worth keeping an eye on, but this doesn't appear to be serious.

        10. Jacksonville Jaguars

The Jaguars feel confident enough in their running game that they’re more than happy utilizing Leonard Fournette more than they probably should. But hey they get paid big bucks to make the tough calls. What should help Fournette avoid injuries is the fact he’s coming in about 11 pounds lighter and he’s even said that he feels quicker and that he plays his best around 224 pounds, which is where he’s currently at. In 2016, Jacksonville ranked 23rd in rushing attempts per game at 24.5 but last season they led the league with 33.1 rushing attempts per game. And it wasn’t just because of Leonard Fournette . Sure he’s a special talent that the Jaguars are heavily vested in, but they also had a much-improved offensive line heading into 2017, and the same can be said heading into 2018.

Names to Know: It’s somewhat mind boggling that Brandon Linder hasn’t yet made the Pro Bowl because he’s arguably the best center in the league and the Jaguars decided about a year ago to pay him as such. This past March, the Jaguars went and signed 2017 first-team All-Pro guard Andrew Norwell making him the highest paid guard in the league. Add in right tackle Jeremy Parnell and you’ve got three really good all around offensive linemen. A weakness for the Jags is Cam Robinson who is coming off a pretty tough rookie season where he was called for 12 penalties in 13 games. Perhaps the silver lining is that he can only get better?






Cam Robinson

Andrew Norwell

Brandon Linder

AJ Cann

Jeremy Parnell

Josh Wells

Chris Reed

Tyler Shatley

Brandon Thomas

Will Richardson

KC McDermott

Josh Walker



Sean Hickey





William Poehls





Brandon Smith

The Scheme: While this may very well be a zone running league, Fournette did most of his damage on power blocking plays running straight up the middle. It worked out for him pretty well as he rushed for over 1,000 yards in his rookie season. But don’t discount the Jaguars as a non-zone blocking team. They did attempt a fair amount of inside zone runs a year ago. While they may have lacked the athleticism in 2017 to be an effective zone blocking team they could surprise some people this year. Last season the Panthers ranked as the second-best inside zone running teams according to Pro Football Focus. And coincidentally enough, the Jaguars went and stole Andrew Norwell from Carolina to help improve their own inside zone runs to help get Leonard Fournette to the next level. Cam Robinson is going to need to make massive strides in his sophomore campaign and the Jags will need to figure out their issues at right guard. But right now, Jacksonville has three guys that make up a pretty impressive unit.

        11. New England Patriots

Some may call this a bit of a “homer” pick, but oh well. The Patriots spit out a solid offensive line last season that ranked seventh in the NFL in yards before contact. To be completely honest the loss of Nate Solder  isn’t as significant of a loss considering he allowed 51 pressures last season and while he’s one of the classiest individuals off the field and always shows up for charitable work, he just isn’t worth being the highest paid tackle in the league. As long as Dante Scarnecchia is the offensive line coach for the Pats, they will continue to boast a respectable line each year.

Names to Know: The Patriots were well aware they were losing Solder in free agency and needed to make an acquisition to sure up the offensive line. They went out and acquired Trent Brown  who is coming off an injured shoulder and drafted Isaiah Wynn  with their first pick in this year’s draft. So on the left side of the line their may be growing pains at first, but there is some consistency and continuity on the right side with Marcus Cannon  at right tackle, Shaq Mason at right guard, and David Andrews at center. The Patriots will likely rotate guys in and out to keep them fresh and not wear them down too much so take the following depth chart with a grain of salt.






Trent Brown

Joe Thuney

David Andrews

Shaq Mason

Marcus Cannon

LaAdrian Waddle

Isaiah Wynn

Luke Bowanko

Ted Karras

Matt Tobin

Ulrick John

Jason King

James Ferentz

Cole Croston

Andrews Jelks

The Scheme: The Patriots don’t necessarily stick with one offensive game plan. In recent years they’ve enforced power rushing attacks with a bruiser like LeGarrette Blount  , but they’ve also employed more versatile backs that can catch passes like James White  , Dion Lewis  , and Rex Burkhead  . In the passing game, as much crap as people may want to give Tom Brady  for being a “dink & dunk” passer, the passing game is quick and efficient and it moves the ball down the field. This is why it was frustrating watching Nate Solder  at times. With Brady getting rid of the ball quickly, he didn’t require much time to be blocked. Yet Solder still yielded over 50 pressures and Brady was sacked 35 times last year. It’s not fair to place all the blame on one particular person, but it was clear the left side of the line needed improvements and the Pats put forth the effort in the offseason to make said changes. Expect more of the same from New England in 2018. New England’s knack for rotating guys in and out likely won’t produce any standouts on the offensive line, but it should keep the big fellas healthy and fresh.

UPDATE (8/18): The Patriots first-round pick Isaiah Wynn  tore his achilles Thursday night against the Eagles which effectively ends his rookie season before it even starts. Sure it sucks because the Patriots invested so much in him, but this is the nature of the game and he would have upgraded the offensive line very much. For now this gives more opportunities to Ted Karras and Joe Thuney  to play for first-team reps. The Patriots still looked good enough to survive the injury Thursday night. Scarnecchia and Belichick are known for rotating guys in & out to keep them fresh so despite the injury to Wynn they'll tread on with the "next man up" mantra. Unfortunately, this will definitely impact their ranking heading into the season.

Old Rank: 7     New Rank: 11

  1. Detroit Lions

Detroit cracks the top 12 because of the efforts that have been made to improve the offensive line over the past couple years. It hasn’t translated to a good running game, but this is an offensive line that’s on the rise and fairly underrated. Despite Matt Patricia being the Lions new head coach, there is some continuity with Jim Bob Cooter remaining as Detroit’s offensive coordinator and the team is adamant on establishing a solid running game and they’ll definitely need the offensive line to step up after a disappointing running attack in 2017.

Names to Know: Nobody can say the Lions haven’t tried to build up the offensive line. Heading into 2017 Detroit went out and signed T.J. Lang and Rick Wagner to improve the right side of the line. Unfortunately before the season even started it was announced that left tackle Taylor Decker would miss the first half of the season after recovering from shoulder surgery. However, when Decker did return the offensive line performed much better. Additionally the Lions went out and drafted one of the top-ranked offensive linemen in this year’s draft, Frank Ragnow . T.J. Lang is the oldest of the group at age 30, but even that isn’t too old by an offensive lineman’s standards. This group could be really good in the years to come.






Taylor Decker

Frank Ragnow

Graham Glasgow

TJ Lang

Rick Wagner

Tyrell Crosby

Kenny Wiggins

Wesley Johnson

Beau Nunn

Corey Robinson

Brian Mihalik

Joe Dahl

Leo Kolomatangi


Dan Skipper


John Montelus



Adam Bisnowaty

The Scheme: The Lions ran an outside zone running scheme last year and despite their best efforts, they weren’t very good at it. However, with still a relatively young offensive line and a good, young running back in Kerryon Johnson this is a much better makeup for success in this same running attack. The Lions also went out and signed LeGarrette Blount to a one-year deal, but don’t expect him to be heavily involved in any zone running scheme. Johnson should be the beneficiary of that role and as long as the group can stay healthy they could run this offense with ease considering it would be the same running concepts called by Cooter last season. The Lions offensive line is a dark horse to finish as a top five unit in 2018.

  1. Washington Redskins

2017 wasn’t a particularly great year for Washington’s big guys up front. Kirk Cousins was sacked a career high 41 times at a 7.1% rate. Additionally the running game wasn’t worth writing home about either as Washington averaged just 90.5 rushing yards per game, good for fifth-worst in the league. To be fair they were dealing with a ton of injuries to the offensive line so there is some optimism surrounding the offense with a new quarterback as well as a promising rookie running back heading into 2018.

Names to Know: Trent Williams and Brandon Scherff are both former top five picks in the NFL Draft and they have combined for eight Pro Bowl appearances. Williams was one of the players mentioned previously that dealt with a knee injury that limited him to ten games before being placed on injured reserve back in December. Williams and Scherff are two of the very best offensive linemen in the league. The issue is that there is a bit of a drop off in talent from these two. Morgan Moses seemed to get a bit fat & happy last season after signing a new five-year contract with the team and Chase Roullier struggled as a rookie at center. But again, Roullier had a hand injury that probably held up his ability to perform at a higher level. Washington doesn’t seem too concerned about either player’s performance because they didn’t make any significant free agency signings to improve the offensive line, but they did draft Geron Christian, an offensive tackle, in the third round of this year’s draft that they could shift to left guard because it’s still a weak spot.






Trent Williams

Shawn Lauvao

Chase Roullier

Brandon Scherff

Morgan Moses

Ty Nsekhe

Kyle Kalis

Demetrius Rhaney

Tyler Catalina

TJ Clemmings

Geron Christian

Tony Bergstrom

Casey Dunn

Cameron Jefferson

John Kling


Isaiah Williams


Alex Balducci

Timon Parris

The Scheme: With a new veteran quarterback and a shiny new rookie running back the Redskins will definitely have a fresh look to them. Alex Smith will take hold of the offensive reigns and while he’s not the sexiest name out there he is coming off a career year. The team also drafted Derrius Guice who could easily lead the team in carries. By comparison, Guice is just a little bit lighter than Leonard Fournette (if Fournette is true to his word that he’ll be playing around 223-224 pounds this year) with Guice weighing around 218 and he ran a 4.49 40-yard dash at the combine. The big fella can move. So what does this mean for the offensive line? Well assuming that everyone is healthy this line should be better than last year to keep the quarterback safe. Additionally Guice isn’t afraid to run people over and his quickness makes him an elusive threat Washington was missing last year.

  1. Chicago Bears

In 2016, the Bears offensive line was one of the best in the league that helped spring Jordan Howard to over 1,300 rushing yards in his rookie season. 2017 was a bit of a step backwards for the offensive line. With a mild uptick in carries Howard still had a great season, but rushed for almost 200 yards less. Heading into 2018 the Bears will have to replace Josh Sitton who is a four-time Pro Bowler and they’ll need improved performances from their youngest stars on the O-line.

Names to Know: Kyle Long is a three-time Pro Bowl selection, but he dealt with a few injuries to his ankle and finger that hampered his play a bit last year. The final straw was aggravating a shoulder injury where the Bears were forced to put him on IR on his 29th birthday. Tough break, right? Additionally, Cody Whitehair followed up his strong rookie season with a somewhat subpar sophomore year. But Charles Leno Jr. had a good year at left tackle and the team went out and invested a second-round pick in James Daniels to presumably fill in at guard. While 2017 was a disappointing year, there’s plenty of reason to be excited about the Bears if they can stay healthy under new head coach Matt Nagy.






Charles Leno Jr.

Bradley Sowell

Cody Whitehair

Kyle Long

Bobby Massie

Dejon Allen

James Daniels

Hroniss Grasu

Jordan Morgan

Matt McCants


Jeremi Hall

Eric Kush

Earl Watford





Brandon Greene


The Scheme: Overall the Bears offense was pretty boring in 2017. They were 29th in scoring and second-to-last in passing yards per game. Suffice it to say the goal is to be more innovative in 2018. Enter Matt Nagy, the former offensive coordinator of the Kansas City Chiefs who boasted one of the best offenses in the league last year. The Chiefs utilized a healthy amount of zone runs last season and were actually one of the best at outside zone runs so expect Nagy to incorporate similar plays with Chicago. This team brought in Taylor Gabriel , Trey Burton , and Allen Robinson in the offseason so they’re putting forth a solid effort to put weapons around Mitchell Trubisky . Here’s a small caveat, it may take a while to get the wheels in motion learning a new offense, but this could be a top ten offensive line and one of the more exciting offenses this year if everything clicks.

  1. San Francisco 49ers

There sure is plenty to be excited about if you’re a 49ers fan. Kyle Shanahan’s offense came on strong to finish the year once they started Jimmy Garoppolo . Here’s something to think about, it took Matt Ryan a full year to grasp Kyle Shanahan’s offense in Atlanta. But once he did, the team went to and almost won the Super Bowl. Jimmy Garoppolo seemed to grasp the offense in a relatively short amount of time. Is this a prediction that San Francisco will make the Super Bowl? Hardly, but it’s a testament to Jimmy G’s football IQ and the offense could make massive strides similar to last year’s Rams with a fairly underrated offensive line.

Names to Know: Kudos to John Lynch and the 49ers front office for knowing to protect their franchise quarterback investment. The 49ers drafted Mike McGlinchey, an offensive tackle out of Notre Dame, with the ninth overall pick in this year’s draft and signed Weston Richburg to a big contract. Richburg, when healthy, is one of the league’s best centers and he has a toughness and nastiness to him that could give this offensive line some bite. Joe Staley is a six-time Pro Bowler and will turn 34 before the season begins, but he’s still performing at a high level. Additionally the team traded Trent Brown who was a solid pass blocker, but terrible in run blocking as he didn’t really fit Kyle Shanahan’s scheme. So this is where McGlinchey will slide in on the zone blocking O-line. If there’s a weakness on this line it’s with the interior at the guard spots. Laken Tomlinson re-signed with San Francisco after starting 15 games last year. He wasn’t great, but he wasn’t terrible either. There are also questions surrounding 2016 first round pick, Josh Garnett who missed all of last season with a knee injury. He didn’t perform too well as a rookie and since he’s coming off an injury his progress will be worth monitoring.






Joe Staley

Laken Tomlinson

Weston Richburg

Josh Garnett

Mike McGlinchey

Darrell Williams

Jonathan Cooper

Mike Person

Erik Magnuson

Garry Gilliam

Andrew Lauderdale


Coleman Shelton

Najee Toran

Pace Murphy



Alan Knott


Jamar McGloster

The Scheme: It’s no secret Shanahan loves to run side-to-side with his offense in zone concepts. This was one of the facets of his offense in Atlanta that helped the team reach the Super Bowl in 2016. In 2017 Shanahan didn’t have the personnel to effectively implement this running attack. Trent Brown just wasn’t that mobile and struggled in zone blocking. But this year promises to be better if Richburg can return to his top form and McGlinchey lives up to expectations of being one of the best offensive line prospects from this year’s draft. Additionally, the 49ers signed Jerick McKinnon who sits at the top of their running back depth chart and don’t sleep on Matt Breida either. This offense could be very good this year and don’t be surprised if this is a top ten offensive line come season’s end.

  1. Indianapolis Colts

The Colts, for a long time, have been the shining example of how not to protect your quarterback. They tried putting the best weapons around Andrew Luck by bringing in veteran players like Andre Johnson and Frank Gore . In reality what they needed to do was protect their franchise quarterback. Luck missed the entire 2017 season and he’s slowly eased his way back into throwing a football. With a new head coach, new offensive coordinator, and some improvements to the offensive line there won’t be immediate success, but they’re heading in the right direction.

Names to Know: Anthony Castonzo has never made a Pro Bowl, but he’s been very valuable at left tackle for the Colts. Last year he was really the only one that played well and was healthy for all 16 games. The same cannot be said for Ryan Kelly whose season was book-ended with injuries. Jack Mewhort started five games before going down for the season with a knee injury. However, the Colts went out and drafted arguably the most exciting offensive line prospect in recent memory by taking Quenton Nelson from Notre Dame with the sixth overall pick in April’s draft. His college hightlight reel is basically pornography to any offensive line coach. He’s a big, mean guy that can push around the best of them and he seems like he can already play at a Pro Bowl level. And credit to the Colts for also taking Braden Smith 37th overall out of Auburn. Heading into 2018 the Colts certainly have more depth on the offensive line and they could crack the top 15 by the end of the season, but they will need more luck staying healthy this time around.






Anthony Castonzo

Quenton Nelson

Ryan Kelly

Matt Slauson

Denzelle Good

Tyreek Burwell

Matt Slauson

Deyshawn Bond

Braden Smith

Austin Howard

Le’Raven Clark

Mark Glowinski


Joe Haeg

Tyreek Burwell


Jeremy Vujnovich



Jared Machorro

The Scheme: Had Josh McDaniels actually followed through as the Colts head coach you’d expect the offense to look similar to the Erhardt-Perkins offense the Patriots run. However, McDaniels got cold feet and decided to stay in New England, likely to be the heir to Bill Belichick’s throne. So the Colts went out and signed Frank Reich to be the new head coach and he’s brought along Nick Sirianni as his offensive coordinator. Reich comes over from the Philadelphia Eagles, fresh off a Super Bowl championship, and could likely implement a similar offense. The Eagles were notorious for their RPO’s, but also don’t forget about the previously-mentioned trap plays they would run with the offensive line. This is still a relatively younger line with a rookie offensive guard that will have no problem pushing people around. It’s hard not to get a bit excited about this group because of Nelson’s natural talent, but for now it may be wise to temper expectations.

Update (8/18): 2014 second-round pick Jack Mewhort announced his retirement surprisingly earlier this month at the ripe age of 26 years old. Mewhort has dealt with a few knee injuries over the last two seasons and struggled to get back to form so he's decided to hang up the cleats while he's still young. Matt Slauson has been promoted to the first-team filling in for Mewhort at guard.

  1. Cleveland Browns

There’s no doubt that Cleveland’s offensive line is going to look a bit different next year. Joe Thomas was a mainstay in the Cleveland trenches for over ten years. From 2007 to 2016 he made the Pro Bowl each year. The one year he didn’t was his last year, a season cut short by an injury after logging over 10,000 consecutive snaps. Once Thomas went down the pass blocking on the corners certainly suffered, but the run game was still okay. 2018 could be a challenge for the Browns as they look to replace Thomas as well as build upon the young talent they’ve drafted over the past two years.

Names to Know: Despite the departure of Thomas there are a couple guys that can perform at a higher level for Cleveland. Joel Bitonio was signed to a five-year contract extension this past March to continue to helm the left guard spot, and Chris Subbard is coming over from Pittsburgh to play at right tackle. And don’t forget last year the team had a ton of cap space and signed Kevin Zeitler and JC Tretter in free agency. While Shon Coleman did struggle at left tackle in Thomas’s absence, the Browns drafted Austin Corbett 33rd overall in this year’s draft. The left tackle position will be worth keeping an eye on in case Cleveland opts to go with the rookie coming out of training camp.






Shon Coleman

Joel Bitonio

JC Tretter

Kevin Zeitler

Chris Hubbard

Austin Corbett

Spencer Drango

Austin Reiter

Geoff Gray

Greg Robinson

Desmond Harrison

Fred Lauina

Anthony Fabiano

Avery Gennesy

Victor Salako





Christian DiLauro

 The Scheme: Expect the Browns, like a lot of the NFL, to run their share of zone schemes. Believe it or not the Browns were one of the best teams in the league in 2017 with inside zone runs. On 124 attempts they averaged 4.4 yards per attempt and 1.7 yards before contact. You should expect more of the same in 2018. Despite a 1-31 record in two years as head coach, Hue Jackson is back for more with either TyRod Taylor or Baker Mayfield at quarterback. They also went out and signed Carlos Hyde who is familiar with Kyle Shanahan’s zone running offense and drafted Nick Chubb in April.

  1. Kansas City Chiefs

This is around the spot in the list where things take a turn for the worse. Not to say Kansas City has a terrible offensive line. For what it’s worth, this group serves its purpose with the explosive players around them. The Chiefs offense finished seventh in scoring last season and sixth in total yards per game. They didn’t make too many moves to address the line via the draft or free agency so they seem pretty content with the collection they have.

Names to Know: In 2017, for the second straight year, Mitchell Schwartz was named second team All Pro. Eric Fisher and Laurent Duvernay-Tardif f both performed well with the bigger problems coming with the interior spots at center and left guard. Some people will cut Mitch Morse some slack at center. He played with an injured foot before being place on IR to end his season. If he can bounce back and play to the level of everyone else he’ll be fine. Bryan Witzmann is signed through 2018, but it’s no guarantee he’ll return to his spot at left guard.






Eric Fisher

Parker Ehinger

Mitch Morse

Laurent Duvernay-Tardif f

Mitchell Schwartz

Cameron Erving

Kahlil McKenzie

Jordan Devey


Bryan Witzmann

Dillon Gordon


James Murray


Andrew Wylie

Bentley Spain


Tejan Koroma


Ryan Hunter

The Scheme: While they may not have made a big acquisition to improve the offensive line there are some aspects where the O-line was a weakness, particularly in zone blocking. The Chiefs were one of the best outsize zone running teams in the entire NFL. They averaged 5.16 rushing yards per attempt on outside zone calls, but they were horrible on inside zone plays where their running backs averaged only 2.93 yards per attempt (0.90 yards before contact). Again, Morse battled a foot injury most of the year, but left guard was a massive weakness too. Don’t expect the scheme to change, but definitely look for Kansas City to try to find a better option in house at left guard.

  1. Los Angeles Chargers

The Chargers have potential to move up, but even putting them at 19 is being generous. The offensive line last year wasn’t stellar by any means, but there were some significant injuries they had to push through. But the Bolts trimmed some fat and are looking at a better season where they can improve upon both run and pass blocking.

Names to Know: Russell Okung struggled to stay healthy to begin his career in Seattle. After a short stint with the Broncos in 2016, Okung signed a hefty contract prior to the 2017 season with the Chargers, but he lived up to expectations and earned a trip to his second Pro Bowl. He was about the only highlight for this offensive line. Before the season even began, Los Angeles’ 2017 second round pick, Forrest Lamp , tore his ACL and missed his entire rookie season. He also underwent a minor knee procedure this offseason so there’s still some concern about how healthy he’ll be to start the year. Dan Feeney, the Chargers 2017 third round pick, struggled in his rookie season when he took over at guard when Matt Slauson went down. Slauson’s now with Indianapolis so L.A. is clearly hoping he performs better in his second season. They also went out and signed Mike Pouncey to play center and he will only be 29 at the start of the season and is still capable of playing well. The Chargers desperately needed an upgrade at center after Spencer Puller allowed the most pressures in the league for centers according to Pro Football Focus. The continuity won’t be there, but the fresh faces can only be better than what Los Angeles had last year in the trenches.






Russell Okung

Dan Feeney

Mike Pouncey

Forrest Lamp

Joe Barksdale

Sam Tevi

Michael Schofield

Scott Quessenberry

Donavon Clark

Brett Boyko

Trent Scott

Cole Toner

Spencer Pulley

Chris Durant

Zachary Crabtree


Zack Golditch




The Scheme: Anthony Lynn is a former running back who deeply favors zone running, both outside and inside. Los Angeles struggled with this scheme a year ago at times, probably because they were stricken with injuries. This seems to be a re-occurring theme specifically with the Bolts. They’re already going to be without Hunter Henry for the season after he tore his ACL during OTA’s. Without Henry, they’re missing a big target in their passing attack. While they can’t completely abandon the running game, it’s possible they utilize Melvin Gordon a little more in the passing game. In his three seasons in the league, Gordon has seen an increase in targets and receptions each year. Last year he topped out at 58 catches on 83 targets. Another increase in workload for Gordon in the passing game could be monstrous for his fantasy production. But Lynn wants to improve on the running game and Gordon’s 3.9 yards per carry. Getting the line healthy and mobile to run his zone schemes will go a long way toward this offense being successful with Henry.

  1. Denver Broncos

In last year’s NFL Offensive Lines preview, the Broncos were picked as one of the more underrated groups in the league. However, as the season played out they proved to be fairly awful in pass protection. The offensive line was responsible for giving up over 30 sacks and over 200 pressures last year. But they didn’t make too many drastic moves in the offseason, save for addressing a need at right tackle. There’s still reason to be optimistic about Denver, but given their performance in 2017 they don’t deserve to crack the top half of the rankings.

Names to Know: The Broncos were without Ron Leary for the final five games of 2017. He suffered a back injury that placed him on IR, but heading into 2018 it’s expected they’ll move him back to left guard, which is where he shined as a member of the Cowboys. Garett Bolles did well with run-blocking but he struggled mightily in pass protection as he was called for 14 penalties. But these are growing pains with rookies. Denver isn’t going to quit on him just yet. Matt Paradis had a pretty good year at center as he started all 16 games for the third consecutive season. Connor McGovern was sub-par at right guard in his rookie season. It’s possible with a full training camp receiving first-team reps he could improve. Jared Veldheer should start at right tackle after being acquired in a trade from Arizona. He is coming off an ankle injury, but if he’s healthy he should return to form as a good right tackle.






Garett Bolles

Ronald Leary

Matt Paradis

Connor McGovern

Jared Veldheer

Andreas Knappe

Max Garcia

JJ Dielman

Sam Jones

Menelik Watson

Cyrus Kouandjio

Jeremiah Poutasi

Austin Schlottmann

Billy Turner

Elijah Wilkinson





Leon Johnson

The Scheme: The Broncos were reportedly growing frustrated midseason with Mike McCoy’s offense last year, so they replaced him with Bill Musgrave who has experience as an OC and as a Quarterbacks coach. Musgrave is a bit of a forward thinker and will likely run more of a spread offense in Denver. Musgrave was instrumental in Derek Carr ’s improved performance in 2016 as he implemented similar RPO’s that the Rams, Eagles, and Cowboys run. This offensive system is ideal for younger quarterbacks because they call for easier reads of defenses. Now he’s getting a slightly more experienced quarterback with Case Keenum taking over, but it should still be a balanced offense that will allow Devontae Booker and Royce Freeman to run the ball a fair amount.

  1. Carolina Panthers

The Panthers offensive line actually was pretty good last season. The problem is that certain players are getting older, they lost their best linemen from last year, and they did little to find new additions via free agency or the draft. Is there upside? Yes because this group was pretty effective running the ball last year averaging 129.9 rushing yards per game. However, despite the success of the running game last year there are concerns about the imbalance from the right side of the line to the left.

Names to Know: The Panthers bid farewell to Andrew Norwell who was easily one of the best guards in the league last year. They brought in Jeremiah Sirles to replace Norwell. Sirles was primarily a backup last season in Minnesota, but he enters 2018 reunited with Norv Turner who was the offensive coordinator for the Vikings from 2014-2016. Now to the “imbalance” mentioned earlier. On the right side of the line, Trai Turner (no relation to Norv) and Daryl Williams were outstanding. Williams actually earned second-team All-Pro honors, and Turner has made three straight Pro Bowls. There’s hardly a concern on that side. However, center Ryan Kalil is now 33 years old and was limited to just six games last year as he dealt with a neck injury. Perhaps its time he hangs up the cleats and focuses on his movie-producing career. Kalil’s younger brother, Matt, is entering his second season with Carolina and hopefully it goes better than the first. Kalil didn’t have the best season of his career with the Panthers and it’ll be interesting to see if Taylor Moton gets an opportunity to compete with Kalil for the left tackle job. Moton was Carolina’s 2017 second-round selection.






Matt Kalil

Jeremiah Sirles

Ryan Kalil

Trai Turner

Taylor Moton

Blaine Clausell

Amini Silatolu

Tyler Larsen

Dorian Johnson

Norman Price

Quinterrius Eatmon

Greg Van Roten

Kyle Friend

Kyle Bosch

Daryl Williams (inj)


Brendan Mahon


Taylor Hearn


The Scheme: As mentioned earlier, the Panthers were one of the best teams in the league running the ball. Specifically, they were very good with inside zone runs. On 112 attempts they averaged 5.3 yards per attempt. The Panthers would be wise to utilize McCaffrey a little more in this type of scheme with Jonathan Stewart now on the Giants roster. Turner’s offense typically calls for a versatile running back a la Darren Sproles earlier in his career with San Diego. McCaffrey fits that mold pretty well. Turner also comes from the Coryell coaching tree, which is the kind of offense meant to stretch the field vertically. It also benefits big tight ends (Hello, Greg Olsen ) and other wide receiving threats (Devin Funchess and DJ Moore). There’s still a strong likelihood the Panthers mix in power running schemes and zone running schemes since it worked so well last year. But the offensive line will need to be better in pass protection in order for Turner’s offense to work.

Update (8/18): The Panthers took a massive blow to their offensive line when Daryl Williams went down with injury early in training camp. He was diagnosed with a torn MCL and dislocated patella. Anytime you dislocate anything below the waist, just assume it's a lengthy recovery. This could spell the end for Williams' season, but he's got a full year to recover for the 2019 season. He turns 26 at the end of August so he still has plenty of time to build on his successful career resume for the Panthers. To make matters worse for Carolina, it's expect that Amini Silatolu will miss a few games to start the season after having surgery to repair a torn meniscus.

  1. New York Giants

Nobody needed to tell the Giants that their offensive line was awful, they were well aware. Eli Manning was sacked 31 times last year, and 27 of those sacks were from poor blocking by the O-line. Add in the fact the Giants were 26th in rushing yards (96.8 yards per game) and there were obviously some improvements that had to be made with this offense. And to their credit, they have addressed some needs in the offseason.

Names to Know: The Giants went out and signed Nate Solder as an upgrade at left tackle. They made him the highest paid tackle in the league with a four-year, $62 million deal with almost $35 million guaranteed. Solder is good, but he’s susceptible to letting defensive ends slip by. Last season Solder allowed 51 pressures on Tom Brady . The Giants will move last year’s left tackle to right tackle where he may be able to improve, or they could try moving him to guard if he struggles. The team used their second-round pick on guard Will Hernandez, which means they have some depth to work with on the interior line. John Jerry was pretty good last year and the team also gave Patrick Omameh a three-year deal this past offseason. They’ve definitely made some moves to be better. After all, they were 3-13 a year ago, but they’re trying to make another run at a championship with Eli Manning .






Nate Solder

Will Hernandez

Brett Jones

John Jerry

Ereck Flowers

Chad Wheeler

Patrick Omameh

Jon Halapio

John Greco

Nick Becton


Malcolm Bunche

Evan Brown

Kristjan Sokoli




Zac Kerin

Nick Gates





Chris Scott


The Scheme: After a four-year relationship that saw the latter two as head coach, the Giants bid adieu to Ben McAdoo. The offense was awful, and sure they incurred some injuries but there was no denying that a change was needed. So the Giants hired 2017’s NFL Assistant Coach of the Year Pat Shurmur. Shurmur has previous experience as a head coach, albeit a short stint in Cleveland. But he’s done well since his time with the Browns to rebuild his reputation as an offensive coordinator, most notably last year in Minnesota. Shurmur, like Bill Musgrave mentioned earlier, could run a west coast spread offense that’ll call a good amount of RPO’s. Don’t worry fantasy owners, Odell Beckham Jr. will still get his deep shots. But this could be an up tempo offense that could incorporate some zone blocking schemes for the Giants new workhorse running back, Saquon Barkley . The Giants took Barkley with their first-round pick and this gives them a short two-to-three year window to still win with Eli Manning who is now 37 years old.

  1. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Objectively, this might be an unfair ranking of Tampa Bay. They were sort of a middle-of-the-road offensive line last season, much better than 23rd. Maybe it’s just less exposure to them because it’s hard to pass an eyeball test if you can’t see a team that doesn’t get many nationally-televised games. To be fair, they could finish 16th-18th but they have their issues. The offensive line struggled in run blocking, specifically on inside zone runs, they’re most frequently used scheme. On these plays the Bucs averaged a paltry 1.21 yards before contact, good for 26th in the NFL. Part of this stigma with Tampa may hinder on the fact that they were a popular pick as a breakout team last year and they went 5-11. Was the record the offensive line’s fault? Hardly, but they can and should be better.

Names to Know: Demar Dotson was having a great year before being placed on IR in November. He returns to helm the right tackle spot, but he’ll turn 33 in October. Ali Marpet was a nice play at center last season, but he’ll move back to guard since the Bucs brought in Ryan Jensen from Baltimore. The biggest issue for Tampa could be on the left side of the line with the Smiths, Evan and Donovan. Donovan was awful again last year and Evan is really only known for untying Ndamukong Suh ’s shoes during a Thanksgiving game a few years ago, thus causing Suh to stomp on his leg. Should Donovan struggle at left tackle, maybe the Bucs shift Dotson over and insert Alex Cappa, the team’s 2018 third-round pick, at right tackle. Time will tell. It’s also possible Cappa competes for the left tackle job so they can keep Dotson where he’s most comfortable.






DonoVan Smith

EVan Smith

Ryan Jensen

Ali Marpet

Demar Dotson

Leonard Wester

Alex Cappa


Cole Boozer

Caleb Benenoch

Cole Gardner

Givens Price



Michael Liedtke

Ruben Holcomb

Adam Gettis



Brad Seaton

The Scheme: With the Buccaneers investing their second round pick in running back Ronald Jones II out of USC it’s hard to envision a scenario where the Bucs wouldn’t try out similar zone schemes they ran last season, although they were largely unsuccessful. Once Jameis Winston returns from suspension Koetter will likely stick with the offensive planning that has seemingly worked pretty well during Winston’s development. Koetter typically runs a passing attack around plays that stretch further down field that take a little extra time to develop. Naturally this would call for an extra blocker so Winston can find the best target and avoid getting sacked. Tampa definitely wants to get its use out of Ronald Jones II so the O-line needs to be much better.

  1. Miami Dolphins

Before the 2017 season even began, the Dolphins were locked in a contract dispute with Branden Albert. Ultimately they traded him to Jacksonville (oh, what could have been) and he retired at the beginning of training camp. It’s no secret the Dolphins missed Albert’s presence last year. They averaged only 86.8 rushing yards per game, which was fourth worst in the NFL. Even more embarrassing, Miami running backs averaged just 0.59 yards before contact last year. That was far and away the worst out of all 32 NFL teams. They did okay in pass protection, but they have a long way to go to be better on the ground and it starts with the offensive line.

Names to Know: After Albert was traded Laremy Tunsil transitioned from left guard to left tackle and it wasn’t an easy transition at all. The 2016 first-round pick was supposed to be a sure fire prospect and while he did okay in his rookie year the move to tackle proved to be difficult. But Miami seems confident in his ability to improve, as they didn’t make a significant addition during the draft. Really the only notable acquisitions the Dolphins made were trading for Daniel Kilgore to replace Mike Pouncey and signing Josh Sitton . Sitton will slot in nicely at left guard. Miami’s hoping to get any sign of good play out of the 32-year-old Pro Bowler while Kilgore isn’t the greatest center by any means, but he has no real competition at the spot.






Laremy Tunsil

Josh Sitton

Daniel Kilgore

Jesse Davis

Ja’Waun James

Sam Young

Isaac Asiata

Jake Brendel

Ted Larsen

Eric Smith

David Steinmetz

Connor Hilland

Mike Matthews


Zach Sterup





Roubbens Joseph

The Scheme: So this offense is odd. For all the credit Adam Gase gets for being a quarterback guru, he’s definitely struggled with Miami. Now he’s only been there two years and didn’t have Ryan Tannehill last season. It was actually a rather forgetful season with Jay Cutler . But Gase hasn’t struck a cord with the offense yet. He’s been heavily critical of it, especially last year. The team fired offensive coordinator Clyde Christensen, but oddly kept him on the staff to be the director of football/player development. To replace Christensen they hired Dowell Loggains. Who, you ask? Exactly. The last two years Loggains has been the offensive coordinator for the Chicago Bears, who have had moderate success with Jordan Howard and they possibly have a franchise quarterback with Mitchell Trubisky . The issue with Loggains is that he just isn’t a great play caller. Not like Gase would give up play calling duties anyway, but back in November ESPN ranked him last among the 32 eligible play callers. Gase’s offense incorporates some West Coast aspects to it, which probably caters to Ryan Tannehill ’s passing abilities. It doesn’t require him to throw too deep and for the offensive line this works because they’re pretty good in pass protection. But does Miami go back to the well for another year attempting the same offense? Or do they take some insight from the offensive coordinator who was considered one of the worst play callers just eight months ago?

  1. Baltimore Ravens

2017 was a season the Ravens would like to forget. They were on the brink of making the playoffs before the Bengals pulled out a miracle win late in the game to let the Buffalo Bills sneak into the playoffs while the Ravens were on the outside looking in. Despite numerous injuries to the offensive line last season they actually performed pretty well. Baltimore was tenth in the league in rushing with 116 rushing yards per game, and they weren’t terrible in pass protection. The problem for Baltimore heading into 2018 is that they lost some key pieces and they’re going to address aging players at some point.

Names to Know: Marshal Yanda was easily the Ravens best lineman heading into 2017, but he suffered a broken ankle last September and it ended his season right there. Yanda will be at full health this season, but the six-time Pro Bowler turns 34 in September and you have to wonder how much he has left in the tank. Ronnie Stanley made great strides at left tackle earning a decent 76.2 overall grade from Pro Football Focus. He started 15 games last season, missing one due to a concussion. From Yanda and Stanley there’s a drop off in talent. They lost Ryan Jensen to Tampa Bay, so they’ll likely see a diminished performance from Matt Skura who struggled last season when he was asked to fill in for Yanda. Orlando Brown should win the starting right tackle job. He was Baltimore’s third-round pick in this year’s draft and he should be an upgrade over James Hurst .






Ronnie Stanley

James Hurst

Matt Skura

Marshal Yanda

Orlando Brown

Greg Senat

Nico Siragusa

Bradley Bozeman

Jermaine Eluemunor

Alex Lewis

Justin Evans

Andrew Donnal



Maurquice Shakir





Randin Crecelius

The Scheme: The Ravens run a fairly balanced offensive attack. John Harbaugh wasn’t thrilled with Marc Trestman’s insistence on throwing so much so he was fired before 2016 and Marty Mornhinweg was promoted and has kept it a little balanced. The Ravens are at their best when Flacco isn’t throwing the ball more than 38 times per game. In 2017, the Ravens averaged 28.8 rushing attempts per game and 35.4 passing attempts per game. If you think that’s a lot of pass attempts just let it be known that Flacco and the Ravens led the league in 2016 in pass attempts with 42.4 per game. Right around 35-38 is where the Ravens want to be. Mornhinweg and Harbaugh are comfortable sticking with a West Coast style of offense. It’s what the Ravens have run for a few seasons now and there’s no reason to mix things up and make Joe Flacco learn a new offense. Baltimore went out and acquired John Brown , Willie Snead , and Michael Crabtree . This receiving corps can only be better than the minions they deployed last year. For 2018, the pass protection should be fine with Stanley and Brown covering the outside, but there is concern about the interior line and Yanda’s health.

  1. Cincinnati Bengals

To say the Bengals had offensive line problems in 2017 would be an understatement. Last offseason they lost Kevin Zeitler to the Browns and Andrew Whitworth to the Rams. Pro Football Focus mentions an amazing stat from last season: “The Bengals averaged just 3.17 yards (and 0.93 yards before contact) on outside zone runs, which was fifth-lowest in the NFL and third-lowest among teams that used this concept at least 100 times.” That’s insane. They were awful. The offense was so bad that they didn’t score any points until the second quarter of week two last season, and they didn’t score their first touchdown until their third game. To no surprise, offensive coordinator Ken Zampese was fired after two games.

Names to Know: To the Bengals credit, they know they’re weak up front. They used their first-round pick this season to select center Billy Price out of Ohio State, but there are some draft pundits who think Cincinnati reached for Price in the first round. The Bengals also went and acquired Cordy Glenn from Buffalo. Glenn only played in six games last season, but he’ll only be 29 in September so the Bengals should get a couple good years out of him if he’s healthy. The lone bright spot last season from Cincinnati was probably Clint Boling who is fairly durable having made 90 consecutive starts at guard.






Cordy Glenn

Clint Boling

Billy Price

Trey Hopkins

Jake Fisher

Cedric Ogbuehi

Christian Westerman

TJ Johnson

Alex Redmond

Bobby Hart

Kent Perkins


Brad Lundblade

Rod Taylor

Justin Murray

Javarius Leamon




Austin Fleer

The Scheme: The Bengals started 0-3 last season, but finished 7-6. Obviously transitioning away from Zampese paid off because they scored only nine points in their first two games, yet scored 24 points in an overtime loss to Green Bay in week three. Bill Lazor took over for Zampese and was named the full-time offensive coordinator for Cincinnati this past offseason. Lazor comes from a few different backgrounds. He’s worked with Joe Gibbs learning the Air Coryell offense that stretches the field vertically, he learned a West Coast style of offense under Mike Holmgren back in Seattle about a decade ago, and more recently he worked as a quarterbacks coach under Chip Kelly’s up tempo offense. He also worked as Miami’s offensive coordinator back in 2014 and 2015 turning Lamar Miller into a 1,000-yard rusher. With a full offseason and training camp Lazor may be able to implement a better running attack and get the most out of Joe Mixon and Giovani Bernard . It’s likely the Bengals may try and stick with a zone running scheme, though it didn’t work in 2017. This offensive line will need to greatly exceed expectations this year and improve their zone blocking.

  1. Minnesota Vikings

The Vikings had one of the worst offensive lines in 2016 and they tried to address some of those issues heading into 2017. While the offensive line improved slightly, they were still one of the ten worst offensive lines last year. They didn’t allow many sacks, but Case Keenum did a good job scrambling to avoid going down. The run blocking wasn’t great. Don’t be misled by the Vikings 117.9 rushing yards per game last year. They also averaged almost 30 rushing attempts per game. With a new quarterback in town, the Vikings O-line will need to be a lot better if they want to make another deep playoff run.

Names to Know: Joe Berger was easily the best asset on the offensive line last year. He started all 16 games at right guard, but unfortunately he retired so the Vikings will be without him this year. Minnesota will look to turn to Riley Reiff at left tackle after he had a rough first year in Minneapolis after coming over from Detroit. Mike Remmers , the other notable 2017 free agent acquisition, did well enough to not garner much criticism. But Minnesota hasn’t made any significant free agency moves this year to address the line and add experience. They did draft Brian O’Neill in the second round of this year’s draft. He’ll enter training camp in a position battle with Rashod Hill for the start right tackle gig.






Riley Reiff

Tom Compton

Pat Elflein

Mike Remmers

Rashod Hill

Aviante Collins

Danny Isidora

Cornelius Edison

Tom Compton

Brian O’Neill

Dieugot Joseph

Colby Gossett


Cedrick Lang

Storm Norton


Josh Andrews


Chris Gonzalez


The Scheme: With Pat Shurmur leaving as offensive coordinator to become the head coach for the Giants, the Vikings had a big hole they needed to fill. They made a significant splash hiring John DeFilippo to fill the void. DeFilippo comes over from Philadelphia fresh off a Super Bowl win where he was the quarterbacks coach for two years learning from Doug Pederson. In DeFilippo’s lone previous season as an offensive coordinator in Cleveland, the Browns threw for over 4,100 yards and rushed for 1,500 yards. To that point it was the first time in 29 years the Browns were able to accomplish that. Now he’s coming over from Philadelphia’s notorious RPO offense, which Minnesota could utilize, but they now have an experienced and proven quarterback in Kirk Cousins and they’re getting a healthy Dalvin Cook . Minnesota will probably prefer to see some balance with the offensive game plan. However, given how bad the Vikings O-line may be, it’s hard to project how good the running game could be.

Update (8/18): Perhaps the biggest loss to the O-Line for Minnesota so far was Tony Sparano, the Vikings' former offensive line coach, who tragically passed away on July 22nd. Prior to Saturday's preseason game against the Jaguars a nice moment of silence for Sparano was held. This was particularly special for his family who was in attendance consider Sparano's son, Tony Sparano Jr., is an assistant coach for the Jaguars.

In addition to the passing of Tony Sparano, Minnesota is dealing with a couple losses most notably to Nick Easton whose season is already over due to neck and back injuries. Additionally Pat Elflein has been placed on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list as he continues to recover from ankle and shoulder injuries. Mike Remmers was also injured, but his injuries aren't thought to be serious.

       28. Arizona Cardinals

While the Cardinals rank so low due to their poor 2017 season, there is the slight possibility they break the top 20, but they absolutely have their share of concerns. The poor play was the result of numerous injuries that weren’t just suffered at the hands of the offensive line. David Johnson suffered a wrist injury early in the season and the Cardinals were wise not to risk further injury once it was clear they were out of playoff contention. Obviously things can only improve for the Cards. They averaged only 86.6 rushing yards per game last season so obviously there’s dramatic room for improvement if they can get to full health with the offensive line and David Johnson .

Names to Know: DJ Humphries suffered quite a few knee injuries last season, most notably a dislocated kneecap, which is pretty gross if you’ve ever seen pictures. To add insult to injury he also had an MCL injury too. Mike Iupati suffered a triceps injury during week one. Justin Pugh is coming over from the Giants, but his 2017 season was cut short due to a back injury. is coming over from the Bengals and his season ended with a knee injury. Credit to Arizona, however, because they did draft Mason Cole in the third-round of this year’s draft. He played center in college, but the Cardinals will probably move him around. Last year’s center, AQ Shipley, was the only offensive linemen for Arizona to start all 16 games.






DJ Humphries

Mike Iupati

AQ Shipley

Justin Pugh


Will Holden

Mason Cole

Daniel Munyer

Evan Boehm

John Wetzel

Vinston Painter

Greg Pyke

Josh Allen

Will House

Korey Cunningham





Brant Weiss

The Scheme: The Cardinals, with all their injuries, opted to zag while most of the league zig’d with zone blocking schemes. That’s not to say Arizona avoided the concept altogether but they ran gap/man-blocking concepts the most out of every team last season, while yielding a mere 3.7 yards per attempt. So they weren’t particularly great. Mike McCoy comes over from Denver as the new offensive coordinator for the Cardinals. Here’s the thing with McCoy, he has experience with a variety of offenses and he builds his scheme based on the abilities of his players. McCoy played on West Coast offenses, he learned the Air Coryell offense from Dan Henning in Carolina, and he learned the Erhardt-Perkins style of offense from Josh McDaniels when McDaniels coached in Denver. McCoy got a bit of a raw deal as the head coach of the Chargers and then last year as the offensive coordinator in Denver. He’s a smart coach, but he’ll be working with Sam Bradford and Josh Rosen and pretty much everyone on offense ia returning from injury. It’ll be an interesting season in the desert.

Update (8/18): The Cardinals lost starting center A.Q. Shipley to a torn ACL a couple weeks back and while that certainly is frustrating for an offensive line coming back from a ton of injuries, the loss of Shipley may not be as disastrous as it sounds. Sure Shipley was the only Arizona offensive lineman to play 16 games last season, but this promotes Mason Cole to the first-team. Cole was Arizona's third-round pick in this year's draft and he is a very physical rookie with good size that should be able to fill in admirably for Shipley and it sounds like he's been doing well so far at camp.

       29. Seattle Seahawks

The Seahawks are a team that has touted great offensive linemen such as Walter Jones, Max Unger, and (when healthy) Russell Okung. The issue they’ve had in recent years is they’ve tried to change their identity. It did result in a Super Bowl championship five years ago, but the offensive line woes have gotten worse for Seattle in recent memory. With an emphasis to get back to running the ball, Seattle will likely experience more low’s than high’s with their O-line.

Names to Know: Duane Brown is the only player the Seahawks didn’t really have to worry about last season. He made his fourth Pro Bowl after being traded to Seattle, but there is some concern about his age. He’s going to be 33 by the time the season starts, which isn’t a death nail by any means. He may just only have one good season left at best and then it’s back to the drawing board for the Hawks. Ethan Pocic , Seattle’s 2017 second-round pick, had a decent showing in his rookie year allowing two sacks all season long playing both guard positions. However, Germain Ifedi and Justin Britt both regressed a bit in 2017. Seattle did sign DJ Fluker in free agency and while he’s a former first-round pick, he’s had some injury issues and he’s now on his third team in as many seasons. Keep an eye on George Fant , who transitioned very well to the offensive line in his rookie year. Last year he tore his ACL during a preseason game so he missed the entire season. If he can get back to full health and perform at the level he did two years ago, it wouldn’t be too surprising if he took Ifedi’s job. Additionally they invested one draft pick on the offensive line selective Jamarco Jones out of Ohio State, but that pick didn’t come until the end of the fifth round. Looks like it could be another year of Russell Wilson scrambling for his life.






Duane Brown

Ethan Pocic

Justin Britt

DJ Fluker

Germain Ifedi

Jamarco Jones

Jordan Roos

Joey Hunt

Rees Odhiambo

George Fant

Isaiah Battle

Skyler Phillips

Marcus Henry

Avery Young

Willie Beavers

The Scheme: Seattle has been clear about wanting to get back to the running game. They selected running back Rashaad Penny with their first-round pick back in April and he should be the top running back on the depth chart coming out of training camp. Seattle will likely commit to zone running, like most teams. Where Seattle separates itself from other teams is how awful they were with zone running last season. They averaged just 0.63 yards before contact on outside zone runs in 2017. While it is probable they stick with a zone running scheme, it wouldn’t be shocking if they tried using Penny’s 220-pound frame in traditional man/power blocking schemes up the middle.

       30. New York Jets

For a team that was truly terrible in almost all facets of offense last season, they did little to improve the offensive line. The Jets had only six picks in this year’s draft, and three of them came later in the sixth round. To make matters worse they didn’t use any draft picks on the O-line, which is a pretty bold move when you select a franchise quarterback with your third overall pick. They did add Spencer Long in free agency to improve their play at center, but there are still questions at guard and tackle. This is a team that was bottom five in sack rate last season and it doesn’t look like it’ll improve too much on that in 2018.

Names to Know: The names aren’t that flashy. You can argue they’re practically forgettable even. The team signed Spencer Long to a four-year deal in the offseason, but he is coming off a season where knee tendinitis kept him from playing a full year. If Brian Winters can stay healthy he might be valuable at right guard. The issue is that his 2014 season ended with a torn ACL, his 2016 season ended with a concussion, and his 2017 season ended with an abdomen injury. Brandon Shell also dealt with neck, shoulder, and concussion problems, which limited him to 12 games at right tackle. For what it’s worth they could be the worst offensive line in the league. But they’re ranked above two other teams mostly because they’re given the benefit of the doubt because they had so many injuries last season and there’s some semblance of continuity with this group.






Kelvin Beachum

James Carpenter

Spencer Long

Brian Winters

Brandon Shell

Ben Ijalana

Dakota Dozier

Travis Swanson

Jonotthan Harrison

Brent Qvale

Antonio Garcia

Ben Braden

Austin Golson


Dakoda Shepley

Darius James





The Scheme: The Jets were horrendous in pass blocking last year. In 13 games as the starter, Josh McCown was sacked 39 times at an 8.9% sack rate. That means he was sacked once out of every 11 or 12 drop backs. That’s hilariously awful. But as bad as they were in pass protection, they were decent with zone blocking. On outside zone runs last season, Jets running backs averaged 2.07 yards before contact, good enough for third-best in the league. This was mostly thanks to Kelvin Beachum who graded out as an average tackle last season, but compared to the rest of the line he looked really good.  The Jets bring in Rick Dennison (more on him shortly) to be the offensive line/run game coordinator and they also promoted Jeremy Bates to offensive coordinator. Bates comes from the Shanahan coaching tree so you can expect the Jets to stick with a good amount of zone blocking schemes.

Update (8/18): Kelvin Beachum has yet to practice since injuring his foot a couple weeks ago. Apparently there's no clear timetable for his return, which would be a significant loss for the left side of the offensive line. Additionally, Brian Winters is recovering from surgery on his ankle and it's unclear if he'll play in the preseason at all. It's not an ideal start for an offensive line that already had low expectations to begin with.

       31. Buffalo Bills

It has been a brutal offseason for the Bills offensive line so far. They traded left tackle Cordy Glenn to Cincinnati after an injury-plagued season limited Glenn to just six games. 2015 Pro Bowler Eric Wood retired because of a very serious neck injury. Incognito, between throwing dumbbells at people in the gym, retired and then unretired, but the Bills released him making him a free agent. This was one of the better offensive lines in football that actually got better as the season progressed. Unfortunately, with a rookie quarterback in town and a star running back under investigation, the offensive line seems plagued before this season even starts.

Names to Know: With so many departures mentioned above, you may be thinking to yourself, “well who is left?” The lone bright spot is Dion Dawkins. When Cordy Glenn had to miss time last year, the Bills plugged their 2017 second-round pick in his spot and Dawkins actually didn’t do terrible. He may be the only player worth mentioning in this section because Buffalo did little to address the holes on the line this past offseason. They had two first-round picks and selected a potential franchise quarterback in Josh Allen and a linebacker with Tremaine Edmunds . I’m not saying neither of those positions weren’t of great need for Buffalo, but they also didn’t address the offensive line until the end of the fifth round where they selected Wyatt Teller out of Virginia Tech. Buffalo did go out and sign Marshall Newhouse from Oakland, but he’s now on his fifth team in six seasons. The only other free agency signing they made was Russell Bodine , a center, coming over from Cincinnati who had his own struggles in 2017. The one nice thing you can say about Bodine is that he’s not a real injury threat as he hasn’t missed really any time in his career.






Dion Dawkins

John Miller

Russell Bodine

Vladimir Ducasse

Jordan Mills

Marshall Newhouse

Adam Redmond

Ryan Groy

Wyatt Teller

Conor McDermott

Gerhard de Beer

Ike Boettger



De’Ondre Wesley

Mo Porter




Josh James

The Scheme: It’s been a bit of a roller coaster for the Bills after making the playoffs for the first time since Bill Clinton was president. They’ve got a rookie quarterback who has issues with accuracy, there was the previously-mentioned Incognito debacle, LeSean McCoy is under investigation and he just turned 30 and he has a lot of tread on his legs, etc. There are a lot of storylines surrounding the Bills and the offensive line overhaul isn’t even the biggest one. Sean McDermott is going to have his hands full next year. The Bills running backs averaged 1.92 yards before contact last year, which was fourth best in the league. That’s a testament to how good the line was last season. It’ll be nothing short of a miracle if they can even crack the top 20 offensive lines in the league this year with the cast of characters they’ll utilize. Additionally, the Bills also fired offensive coordinator Rick Dennison after one season where Buffalo’s offense finished 27th in scoring at just 17.9 points per game. The past few seasons have seen the Bills use a West Coast style of offense. With Brian Daboll as the new offensive coordinator, expect the Bills to run an Erhardt-Perkins Style of Offense. What does that mean exactly? Well it’s an offense that could be easy for Josh Allen to pick up. Despite his rocket arm, this style of offense incorporates two or three-man routes on each side of the ball using short phrases to call out the plays. It also allows an offense to go no huddle and be a little more up tempo. Will there be struggles with this? Probably because the offensive line will likely be terrible in pass protection.

       32. Houston Texans

It’s basically common knowledge that the Houston Texans have one of the worst offensive lines in the league. Even Houston is aware of their atrocious O-line. No team allowed more pressures on their quarterbacks (253 total) last year than Houston. Fortunately for Houston, Deshaun Watson can make plays with his legs, but he’s coming back from injury and the Texans desperately need their O-line to perform above expectations to keep their franchise quarterback healthy.

Names to Know: What makes improving the offensive line more difficult for Houston was the fact they didn’t have a first or second round pick in this year’s draft. They didn’t make their first pick until the third round. They did draft Martinas Rankin , a center, out of Mississippi State. And shockingly enough that was the only offensive lineman they took in this year’s draft. However, the Texans did make an array of signings in the offseason. They brought in Zach Fulton from Kansas City who did play okay last season, but it took injuries to Mitch Morse , Laurent Duvernay-Tardif f, and Bryan Witzmann for him to find playing time. They also signed Seantrel Henderson who was suspended twice last year for violating the league’s substance abuse policy. To give his suspension context, he utilized marijuana to combat the pain he experiences from Crohn’s disease. They also signed Senio Kelemete who started eight games last season for the Saints. While they made efforts to improve the offensive line not many of the names project to make a significant impact.






Julie’n Davenport

Zach Fulton

Nick Martin

Senio Kelemete

Seantrel Henderson

Martinas Rankin

Kyle Fuller

Greg Mancz

Chad Slade

Kendall Lamm

Roderick Johnson

David Quessenberry



Jaryd Jones-Smith

Anthony Coyle





The Scheme: Bill O’Brien alluded to re-building the offense back in March. It can’t take too much re-tooling. They have a promising quarterback, and two young wide receivers that can be viable targets for Watson in DeAndre Hopkins and Will Fuller V. With that, the pass protection must be better this year in order for Watson and Co. to take flight. It also wouldn’t be a terrible thing if they could finally get Lamar Miller going. Has he been terrible? No. But when they Texans signed him they were probably expecting more than 12 total touchdowns in two years. It all depends on the offensive line and if they can perform better. Bill O’Brien took over playcalling duties a year ago after the team parted ways with former offensive coordinator George Godsey. He knows that he’ll have to re-work his own offense to cater to Watson’s unique skillset. But it all comes back to giving him the best protection he can get.

A ton of credit and many thanks need to go out to Pro Football Focus, Ourlads NFL Scouting,, and Number Fire for providing some of the best research material for this article.