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2017 offensive line review: Not too pretty for the Big Uglies

But there were some bright spots among the offensive linemen.

There was a fair amount of interest in seeing the comparative performance of the individuals who played on the OL for DEN in 2017. So this is it.

The only player who does not show up is Elijah Wilkinson since he had so few snaps that he did not get rated by PFF.

This combines data from behind the pay wall at and data from the Washington Post, which is the only site that seems to have data on Sacks Allowed by offensive linemen. This is not meant to replace my sack-blame piece, which I should do in the spring.

So on to the data.

Name PFF overall Positional Rank PFF Pass Grade Pass Block Snaps Sacks Allowed Passing Snaps per Sack Holding penalties PFF Run Grade Run Block Snaps False Starts
Ronald Leary 81.2 10 81.6 452 2.0 226.0 4 80.3 260 1
Matt Paradis 75.2 8 79.0 698 0.0 no sacks allowed 1 70.6 430 0
Cyrus Kouandjio 73.0 NA 74.3 42 0.0 no sacks allowed 0 71.3 30 0
Garett Bolles 68.8 42 51.4 692 8.5 81.4 7 81.8 415 4
Allen Barbre 44.3 67 40.5 350 5.5 63.6 4 65.7 203 1
Donald Stephenson 42.5 NA 40 170 3.5 48.6 1 46.6 132 0
Max Garcia 41.2 59 40.8 536 4.0 134.0 1 40.7 333 0
Connor McGovern 40.2 63 42.3 247 1.0 247.0 0 39.8 171 2
Menelik Watson 38.9 73 41.1 267 7.5 35.6 1 37.1 181 1
Billy Turner 37.4 NA 33.5 38 1.0 38.0 0 71.1 38 1
Total 33.0 19 10

So the OL was responsible for only 33 of the 52 Sacks the Broncos gave up in 2017. Incidentally this is the same number of times that Trevor Siemian was sacked in 2017.

The OL had 19 holding penalties and 10 false starts. Seven of those holding penalties were on Garett Bolles. After having six false starts in 2016, Donald Stephenson was able to remember the snap count in 2017 and did not get called for a single false start.

Some folks were giving Bolles flack yesterday for allowing 8.5 sacks in 692 pass blocking snaps (1 sack per 81.4 drop backs), but that is nothing. Bolles was far from the worst on the team.

That belongs to Menelik Watson, who allowed one sack for every 35.6 drop backs. Donald Stephenson (48.6) and Allen Barbre (63.6) were also worse than Bolles. On the good side, Matt Paradis, Connor McGovern and Ronald Leary were all good at not allowing sacks.

In terms of PFF rating (and you have to take them with a grain of salt), our best offensive linemen were Paradis and Leary, and they were the only two OL guys who were in the top 10 for their position league-wide.

I was surprised to see how poorly Watson was graded by PFF. He was literally graded as the worst run blocking offensive lineman on the team; I thought that was his strength - run blocking. On the other side, Bolles had the best run blocking grade on the team in 2017.

Regarding Barbre, they list him as a guard although he took significant snaps at RT for us this year. PFF does not break out how well or poorly he played at G and T separately. He might have been a serviceable G but a terrible RT. From the perspective of PFF, it would have been hard to be worse than Watson, though.

This post first appeared on Mile High Report, A Denver Broncos Community, please read the originial post: here

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2017 offensive line review: Not too pretty for the Big Uglies


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