O-Line Shifts: #16-#9


16. Oakland Raiders (29th)

Pass Blocking Ranking: 14th, Run Blocking Ranking: 24th, Penalties Ranking: 9th

With a fresh five year, $44.5 million contract, the Oakland Raiders have made Rodney Hudson the highest paid center in the NFL.

With a fresh five year, $44.5 million contract, the Oakland Raiders have made Rodney Hudson the highest paid center in the NFL.

2014 Offensive Line

  • LT Donald Penn (+19.3)
  • LG Gabe Jackson (+3.7)
  • C Stefen Wisniewski (-2.5)
  • RG Austin Howard (-12.8)
  • RT Khalif Barnes (-9.2) - Hurt for the for the middle portion of the season
  • RT Menelik Watson (-17.2) - Watson filled in for Barnes from weeks 4-12

2015 Projected Offensive Line

  • LT Donald Penn (+19.3)
  • LG Gabe Jackson (+3.7)
  • C Rodney Hudson (+13.0)
  • RG J'Marcus Webb (-4.6 in 2012)
  • RT Austin Howard (-12.8)

Key Losses:

  • C Stefen Wisniewski (-2.5)

Key Additions:

  • C Rodney Hudson (+13.0)

Notes:

  • C Hudson is a straight upgrade over Wisniewski. The Raiders signed him to a 5 year, $44.5 million deal, making him the highest paid center in the league. He’ll be the centerpiece of the Raider’s O-line for many years to come.
  • RG J'Marcus Webb was drafted by the Chicago Bears in the 7 round of the 2010 NFL Draft. He started every game at LT in his first 3 seasons, earning grades of -37.5, -19.1, and -4.6. He has played sparingly in 2013 and 2014. Hopefully, he will fare better with an easier assignment at right guard. In addition, he did seem to improve each year with the Bears.  

2015 Outlook: +1

Upgrade at center, the left side is solid while the right side is questionable.

 

15. Chicago Bears (19th)

Pass Blocking Ranking: 17th, Run Blocking Ranking: 12th, Penalties Ranking: 23rd

2014 Offensive Line

  • LT Jermon Bushrod (-9.0)
  • LG Michael Ola (-6.7)
  • C Brian De La Puente (+8.2) - Missed much of the season due to injury
  • C Roberto Garza (-1.3) - replaced De La Puente at center
  • RG Kyle Long (+12.1)
  • RT Jordan Mills (-15.7)

2015 Projected Offensive Line

  • LT Jermon Bushrod (-9.0)
  • LG Matt Slauson (+21.8 in 2013)
  • C Will Montgomery (+6.6)
  • RG Kyle Long (+12.1)
  • RT Jordan Mills (-15.7)

Key Losses:

  • C Brian De La Puente (+8.2)
  • C Roberto Garza (-1.3)

Key Additions:

  • C Will Montgomery (+6.6)

Notes:

  • LG Matt Slauson missed most of the 2014 season with a torn pectoral muscle.

2015 Outlook: +1

The signing of C Montgomery and the return of LG Slauson will solidify the interior.

 

14. Detroit Lions (8th)

Pass Blocking Ranking: 11th, Run Blocking Ranking: 22nd, Penalties Ranking: 5th

2014 Offensive Line

  • LT Riley Reiff (+6.8)
  • LG Rob Sims (-1.0)
  • C Dominic Raiola (-17.2)
  • RG Larry Warford (+6.8)
  • RT LaAdrian Waddle (+1.9) - missed multiple games due to injury
  • RT Cornelius Lucas (-6.4) - filled in for Waddle

2015 Projected Offensive Line

  • LT Riley Reiff (+6.8)
  • LG Manny Ramirez (+2.0)
  • C Travis Swanson (-10.7)
  • RG Larry Warford (+6.8)
  • RT LaAdrian Waddle (+1.9)

Key Losses:

  • C Dominic Raiola (-17.2)
  • LG Rob Sims (-1.0)

Key Additions:

  • OG Laken Tomlinson (Round 1, Pick 28)
  • OG Manny Ramirez (+2.0)

Notes:

  • The Lions decided to part ways with 36-year-old C Dominic Raiola. Though he was by far the weakest link on the line last year, his replacement, C Travis Swanson, is inexperienced.  C Travis Swanson was drafted in the 3rd round and 78th overall in the 2014 draft.
  • The acquisition of LG Manny Ramirez from the Broncos will tide the Lions over until 1st round pick Laken Tomlinson is ready to play.
  • RT LaAdrian Waddle missed almost half the season due to a knee injury. He started camp on the PUP list but returned to practice in late August. It could take a little time for him to get back up to speed. 
  • Swanson's negative grade comes from a 4 game stretch in which he was forced to play out of position at right guard due to an injury to RG Larry Warford. He may fare significantly better at his natural position at center. If he doesn't, guard Manuel Ramirez has started at center for Denver in 2013 and for the first half of 2014 and may be an adequate replacement. 
  • RG Larry Warford graded at 24.2 in 2013, his rookie season. He wasn't as good in 2014 but there's hope that he can return to that level of performance. 

Outlook: +1

This line has a lot of potential. RG Warford slumped a little in his sophomore year and both he and RT Waddle missed significant time due to injury. The Lions invested a first round pick in LG Laken Tomlinson and the Lions like what they see out of new center Travis Swanson. Trading for the versatile Manuel Ramirez provides good depth at LG if Tomlinson isn't ready to play or at C if Swanson doesn't meet expectations. 

 

13. New York Jets (26th)

Pass Blocking Ranking: 8th, Run Blocking Ranking: 19th, Penalties Ranking: 23rd

Who's #1?: Mangold is PFF's top graded center of 2014.

Who's #1?: Mangold is PFF's top graded center of 2014.

2014 Offensive Line

  • LT D’Brickashaw Ferguson (0.0)
  • LG Brian Winters (-15.3) - benched in week 6
  • LG Oday Aboushi (-2.1)
  • C Nick Mangold (+22.6)
  • RG Willie Colon (-16.3)
  • RT Breno Giacomini (-6.5)

2015 Projected Offensive Line

  • LT D’Brickashaw Ferguson (0.0)
  • LG James Carpenter (-12.0)
  • C Nick Mangold (+22.6)
  • RG Willie Colon (-16.3)
  • RT Breno Giacomini (-6.5)

Key Losses:

  • None

Key Additions:

  • OG James Carpenter (-12.0)

Notes:

  • Nick Mangold was the highest graded center in 2014.
  • OG Aboushi may replace LG Colon or RG Carpenter before the season starts. He performed quite well last year after LG Brian Winters was benched.

2015 Outlook: +1

The line remains pretty much the same. Mangold is a stud, Ferguson is solid, and Carpenter is an upgrade over Winters.

 

12. Washington Redskins (5th)

Pass Blocking Ranking: 9th, Run Blocking Ranking: 21st, Penalties Ranking: 13th

2014 Offensive Line

  • LT Trent Williams (+10.5)
  • LG Shawn Lauvao (-0.8)
  • C Kory Lichtensteiger (+7.1)
  • RG Chris Chester (+1.5)
  • RT Tyler Polumbus (-12.6) - benched in week 8
  • RT Tom Compton (-16.1)

2015 Projected Offensive Line

  • LT Trent Williams (+10.5)
  • LG Shawn Lauvao (-0.8)
  • C Kory Lichtensteiger (+7.1)
  • RG Brandon Scherff (Round 1, Pick 5)
  • RT Morgan Moses (-7.5 on 131 snaps in 2014)

Key Losses:

  • RT Tyler Polumbus (-12.6)
  • RG Chris Chester (+1.5)

Key Additions:

  • OG Brandon Scherff (Round 1, Pick 5)

Notes:

  • Both Polumbus and Chester have been signed by the Falcons.

  • LT Trent Williams was playing hurt for much of the year yet still managed a grade of +10.5. Now fully healthy, he's likely to return to the elite of play he displayed in 2012 (+18.9) and 2013 (34.4).

  • RT Morgan Moses was a 3rd round pick in the 2014 NFL Draft. 

2015 Outlook: +1

A fully healthy Trent Williams improves the line but the right side of the line is in transition as sophomore Morgan Moses and rookie Brandon Scherff fill in for departed veterans. 

 

11. New Orleans Saints (11th)

Pass Blocking Ranking: 20th, Run Blocking Ranking: 9th, Penalties Ranking: 1st

2014 Offensive Line

  • LT Terron Armstead (+6.0)
  • LG Ben Grubbs (-0.2)
  • C Jonathan Goodwin (-6.8)
  • RG Jahri Evans (-6.5)
  • RT Zach Strief (+10.9)

2015 Projected Offensive Line

  • LT Terron Armstead (+6.0)
  • LG Tim Lelito (-0.5)
  • C Max Unger (+10.3)
  • RG Jahri Evans (-6.5)
  • RT Zach Strief (+10.9)

Key Losses:

  • LG Ben Grubbs (-0.2)

Key Additions:

  • C Max Unger (+10.3)
  • OT Andrus Peat (Round 1, Pick 13)

Notes:

  • LG Tim Lelito played out of position last year to relieve the struggling Jonathan Goodwin at center. Lelito may improve significantly playing in his natural spot on the line. 
  • C Max Unger struggled to stay healthy in 2014, missing 10 games

2015 Outlook: +1

A pretty good offensive line got even better with C Max Unger starting at center and 1st round pick OT Andrus Peat adding depth.

 

10. Denver Broncos (3rd)

Pass Blocking Ranking: 5th, Run Blocking Ranking: 20th, Penalties Ranking: 19th

2014 Offensive Line

Falling Down: The precarious line situation in Denver bodes ill for Manning's health.

Falling Down: The precarious line situation in Denver bodes ill for Manning's health.

  • LT Ryan Clady (-2.8)
  • LG Orlando Franklin (+12.0)
  • C Will Montgomery (+6.6) - took over at center after week 9
  • C Manuel Ramirez (-7.1)
  • RG Manuel Ramirez (+2.0) - moved from C to RG after week 9
  • RG Louis Vasquez (+2.9)
  • RT Louis Vasquez (-4.2) - moved from RG to RT after week 9
  • RT Chris Clark (-6.7) - benched after week 6
  • RT Paul Cornick (-5.0) - replaced Clark after week 6, benched in after week 9

2015 Projected Offensive Line

  • LT Ty Sambrailo (Round 2, Pick  27)
  • LG Evan Mathis (+25.8)
  • C Matt Paradis (Round 6, Pick 207)
  • RG Louis Vasquez (-4.2)
  • RT Ryan Harris (-1.6)

Key Losses:

  • OG Orlando Franklin (+12.0)
  • OG Manuel Ramirez (+2.0)
  • C Will Montgomery (+6.6)
  • RT Chris Clark (-6.7)

Key Additions:

  • OT Ryan Harris (-1.6)
  • OG Shelley Smith (-10.1)
  • OT Ty Sambrailo (Round 2, Pick  27)
  • OG Evan Mathis (+25.8)

Notes:

  • LT Ryan Clady tore his ACL in May. He will be out for the 2015 season. Free agent OT Ryan Harris was signed to replace him.
  • Given the tumultuous state of the line, it would not be surprising to see rookie OT Ty Sambrailo forced into the spotlight before long.
  • On August 25th, the Broncos signed free agent OG Evan Mathis. Mathis is a 3-time All-Pro and will help the line tremendously even if it takes a little time for him to gel in the new offense on a new team. Health and age are an issue as Mathis is approaching 34 years old and missed 8 games due to injury last season. However, his impact cannot be understated considering how desperate the Broncos were at guard. 

2015 Outlook: -3

Utter chaos. 2014 saw a lot of shuffling on the line, especially on the right side. Meanwhile, LG Orlando Franklin and LT Ryan Clady held the fort on the left. That stability is gone, with Franklin a cap casualty and Clady a casualty in a more literal sense, tearing his ACL during OTA’s. C Will Montgomery is now with the Bears and RG Manuel Ramirez was traded to move up in the first round. All of these events, some inevitable and some just unfortunate, could spell disaster for the Broncos in 2015 as they rely on rookies at two of the most important positions on the line at LT and C. The Mathis signing is the saving grace of a line that needs to keep Peyton upright and healthy.

 

9. San Francisco 49ers (9th)

Pass Blocking Ranking: 16th, Run Blocking Ranking: 5th, Penalties Ranking: 23rd

The Niners' offseason.

The Niners' offseason.

2014 Offensive Line

  • LT Joe Staley (+22.2)
  • LG Mike Iupati (+10.7)
  • C Daniel Kilgore (+4.1) - season-ending injury in week 7
  • C Marcus Martin (-17.1) - replaced Kilgore at center
  • RG Alex Boone (+6.2)
  • RT Jonathan Martin (-11.9)
  • RT Anthony Davis (-2.1) - started at RT when healthy

2015 Projected Offensive Line

  • LT Joe Staley (+22.2)
  • LG Alex Boone (+6.2)
  • C Ian Silberman (Round 6, Pick 190)
  • RG Marcus Martin (-17.1)
  • RT Erik Pears (-25.0)

Key Losses:

  • OT Jonathan Martin (-11.9)
  • OT Anthony Davis (-2.1)
  • OG Mike Iupati (+10.7)

Key Additions:

  • OG Erik Pears (-25.0)

Notes:

  • My guess is that when the team signed free agent OG Eric Pears, they were hoping they wouldn’t actually have to play him. But then RT Anthony Davis retired out of nowhere and Pears is now starting at right tackle.
  • C Daniel Kilgore is still rehabbing from the season-ending injury sustained in week 7 of last season. C Marcus Martin was terrible in relief.

2015 Outlook: -3

This offseason was brutal for the 49ers. Three solid pieces from last year’s line are gone: one is with a division rival (Iupati), one is rehabbing (Kilgore), and one is retired (Davis). The fallout leaves one inexperienced (Silberman), one incapable (Martin), and one inept (Pears).