FanPost

Observations of The Worst Offensive Lines in 2011

A while ago I had broken down into a system to look at the best offensive lines in 2011 (Located HERE). This was used in comparison to where we compare in these stats that I compiled . So now I want to take a look at the worst passing offensive lines and figure out who the arguably are the worst passing teams are and what the average draft position is for each team. In this research I will break down the statistics of each of these teams and the positions as a whole to help us better understand how a line should not be put together (At least theoretically).

Again, the weakness in this study will be that I’m only doing this for this year (as it will take plenty of time to put just one year together. Maybe if I decide to do this year after year, or go backwards to study, this will become a stronger study). There are other variables such as elite quarterbacks that will skew statistics. For this reason I am taking only the bottom 11 passing offenses (the Chiefs were in the bottom). I would like us to not have one of the worst passing offenses in f every aspect of the game. So I think looking at the bottom 10 passing offense would be a good next step. Taking the bottom 10 passing offenses also helps equalize variability by having an elite QB. A variable that could also skew these numbers is injuries to the offensive line.

The offensive lines that I broke down are the Jaguars, Broncos, Browns, Dolphins, Rams, 49ers, Vikings, Colts, Bears, and Seahawks. (Worst is subjective terminology, but I went with the consistent worst stats in passing categories). I chose this route because if the big guys are doing their job up front then the other members on the team have the best chance of creating these stats (again subjective). If the guys up front aren't doing their job then we have guys flat passing stats.

There were four main categories that I wanted to observe to identify how these teams built their respective offensive lines. The first two categories go hand in hand -- round and draft spot. This will help identify when these players were drafted. The draft number is used to help pinpoint the position in the round that would be best to develop a player at a specific position. I used the category ‘Drafted by’ to help determine whether the players are developed in house, or if they were free agents. The numbers closest to one mean they were more consistently free agents. The numbers closer to 0 mean they were more consistently developed in house. The last category is the amount of NFL experience. I suspect that the amount of experience that is on the line will help tell a story about the other statistics.

So let us begin:

First let us look at the teams as a whole:

Team Round Draft # Drafted by: Experience
Jaguars 4.142857 107.7143 0.428571 5
Broncos 3.777778 111 0.444444 4.111111
Browns 4 121.8889 0.555556 4.777778
Dolphins 2.571429 68.57143 0.571429 5.428571
Rams 5.142857 154 0.714286 5.714286
49ers 3.666667 111.3333 0.111111 3.888889
Vikings 6.25 198.625 0.25 4
Colts 5.125 157.125 0.25 4.125
Bears 4.25 112.75 0.5 4.5
Seahawks 3.857143 106 0.714286 3.571429
Average 4.278373 124.9008 0.453968 4.511706
Min 2.571429 68.57143 0.111111 3.571429
Max 6.25 198.625 0.714286 5.714286
STD 1.009068 36.02477 0.200903 0.702384

What we find out by this is teams like the Vikings get their offensive linemen later in the draft. These numbers are most likely skewed as a couple of their linemen this year are rookies, and undrafted free agents (UDFA’s were labeled with as an 8th round pick, and +1 from the Mr. Irrelevant pick). The Vikings have a relatively low score in comparison to these teams. This means that most of the players are developed in house (any higher and I would consider this as an even mixture of free agents and home talent .33-.66).

If I apply the standard deviation from these stats it also tells me that the Seahawks, and Rams have looked outside of their organization to fill the offensive line. The Rams also wait significantly later in the draft for their offensive lines. While, from what we found from the earlier fanshot, the Packers, Lions, and Giants acquire their offensive linemen earlier in the draft.The Rams have offensive line is older than most of the line of the worst and best. This is a must upgrade year for them.

The Dolphins on the other hand have plenty of talent in the earlier rounds. Yet their offensive line is getting old as seen above.

So how do the Chiefs matchup?

--------------------------(-Round/-- Draft #/-- Drafted/-- Experience)------------------------------------------

Chiefs

5.5

165.375

0.125

4.625

The Chiefs average offensive line is usually found after these teams in the draft, and by using standard deviation this is by a significant amount. We are a team that likes to develop our offensive line in house. I did count Lilja as he started for us… The overall experience level is right near the middle on the lower side. This suggests to me with some tweaking and given more time together that this team could easily be in the top ten offensive lines of 2012 as this isn't a super old team. With Casey Weigmann leaving this will decrease our experience, but with another year of experience this will absorb much of this blow.

In order to find out where we might go to tweak the line lets explore how we compare to these teams at different positions on the line.

Lets start with right tackle:

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------(Round/--------/Draft #/-----/ Drafted/-------/Experience)-----


Average 4.571429 135.3333 0.428571 3.285714

Min 1 2 0 1

Max 8 257 1 10

STD 2.712405 97.78156 0.507093 2.610419

Taking the standard deviation from the average position we find out that taking a right tackle wouldn't be taken in the first round. Yet 40% of the best offensive lines that I’m looking at have a first round right tackle. 50% of the worst offensive lines have a starting right tackle that was drafted after the 5th round. Some of the first round right tackles were prospects at LT, but playing (so lets keep that in perspective). The standard deviation suggests that taking a right tackle with the number 3 position might be within reason. More often than not there is going to be a better player that presents itself at the number 3 position.

Barry Richardson is in his fourth year and sits right at that sweet spot for these offensive lines. Using standard deviation we find that he slightly falls out of range of the draft number. Richardson’s years of experience should tell us by now if he is the guy at right tackle. These stats and our own eyes tell us that the right tackle must be upgraded this offseason. (Doing a quick peep… Richardson does fall into a good backup according to the backup role stats).

Now on to the right guards

------------------------------------------------------------------------------(Round/-------------------/Draft #/--------/ Drafted/------/Experience)-----

Average 4.066667 117.0667 0.4 5.466667
Min 1 19 0 1
Max 8 256 1 11
STD 2.250926 78.29748 0.507093 3.136574

We have found that the average of the worst offensive teams drafted a right guard in the 4th round.Using standard deviation we find that it a right guard would be expected after the 6th pick in the 2nd round. Yet we also find that they wait until early in the 6th round. There are outliers like Anthony Herrera and H Dahl that were undrafted. V Carey and C. Spencer are an outlier that were drafted in the first(all that are aging vets).

Pioli drafted Jon Asamoah in the 3rd round in 2010. Going by these stats this was the perfect place to draft a right guard. There were no backup positions to look up for right guard in particular.

Now for the centers

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------(Round/--------/Draft #/-----/ Drafted/-------/Experience)-----

Average 4.2 120.05 0.45 6.2

Min 1 15 0 1

Max 8 262 1 16

STD 2.397367 79.66078 0.510418 4.274773


Again I’m using standard deviation to tell me where the starting point and end points to start drafting a new center. Pouncey and Mack are the only centers taken in the 1st round on this list. Using standard deviation one would believe that taking a center that early is unnecessary. Taking a center in the 2nd round is where we would get the better value. This value is shown with picks like Meester, and Unger in the 2nd round. Unger is much younger and should help out the Seahawks as they continue to rebuild their offensive line.

Ideally if we had a pick in the 19th range of the 2nd round (pick 51), we would be doing well. Lucky for us Hudson falls right at that cutoff. Yet if Peter Konz somehow fell into our laps in round 2 I would not complain. Many of the worst offensive line in 2011 have gone the free agent route. This appears to be a significant difference than teams with the best offensive lines.

Now to left guards

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------(Round/--------/Draft #/-----/ Drafted/-------/Experience)-----


Average 4.8 145.2 0.533333 4.2

Min 1 2 0 1

Max 8 262 1 10

STD 2.808151 99.94799 0.516398 3.363671



The left guard position as you can see has similar stats as the right guard. The left guards appear to be drafted slightly later than the right guards. Yet the left guards are slightly younger than the right guards. Gallery, and Iupati both were taken in the first round. While Gallery is getting older, Iupati is a younger lineman and will grow in the 49ers offense. I expect when I take a look at the best running offensive lines that the 49ers are in there, and Iupati has a larger role in that success.

Finally the Left Tackle

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------(Round/---------------/Draft #/-------------/Drafted by/----------/Experience)-----

Average 4.3125 127.875 0.25 3.3125
Min 1 3 0 1
Max 8 263 1 8
STD 3.341033 117.2501 0.447214 1.956826



We already have a vested interest in Brandon Albert... What is interesting is that many of these elite offenses have found diamonds in the rough during the later rounds. With that said 70 percent of the worst offensive linesfound a franchise Left Tackle that was drafted in the 1st round. The only reason I make this point is because of the notion that is stated often "In order to have an elite offensive line you must have an elite left tackle" and "In order to have an elite left tackle one must draft one in the first round". So maybe these guys need more time to grow at the LT position, or maybe other pieces to the offensive line is dragging them in to be pointed at in this discussion.

So I have shown these stats… I know of other things to discuss with these stats but given the length of the posts left them out. Feel free to state the obvious. How do you believe that we should proceed in fixing the line? What do you like, and what would you like to see in the future?

This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of Arrowhead Pride's writers or editors. It does reflect the views of this particular fan though, which is as important as the views of Arrowhead Pride writers or editors.

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