Philadelphia up 3
This upgrade is due to the dominance of the left side of the line, specifically left tackle Jordan Mailata and left guard Landon Dickerson. These two new starters are both absolutely massive individuals, even by NFL standards. Even more worrisome for defenses is their mobility. As Isaac Newton explained to the world three centuries ago, force equals mass times acceleration. Many have Mailata and Dickerson's mass, few have their acceleration. This Eagles' offensive line has been bit by the injury bug this season, with both starting guards Brandon Brooks and Isaac Seumalo going on the injured reserve list early and right tackle Lane Johnson missing time for mental health issues. Still, this run-first line is firing on all cylinders. They have snagged #1 in this week's rankings by a slim margin, facing a leaky NY Giants' defensive front on short rest after Monday Night Football.
LA Chargers up 4
Another ability upgrade, this time for rookie left tackle Rashawn Slater. Rookie linemen often struggle with pass protection, especially if they are asked to play left tackle right away. Slater has been automatic in this phase, surrendering only two sacks and twelve pressures through eleven games. In short, Slater is the rare rookie who is playing like an established veteran, and his grade must be adjusted to reflect his performance. The right side of the line with Michael Schofield playing for Oday Aboushi and Storm Norton playing for Bryan Bulaga holds this line back from elite rankings. Nonetheless, the Chargers' line ranks eleventh before traveling to Denver this week.
Minnesota up 2
The Vikings' offense as a whole has looked much better with Mason Cole playing center for Garrett Bradbury, who had been on the Covid list. Despite mid-week comments from coaches saying otherwise, Cole played 100% of snaps in the win over Green Bay, sending the former first-round pick Bradbury to the bench. This Vikings' line is not a dominating unit but Cole offers stability and veteran savvy, qualities that Bradbury lacked. Time will tell if Bradbury will be able to win his job back but it's a small upgrade for this group, 23rd before traveling to face a stout San Francisco defensive front seven.
Carolina up 3
This upgrade is for the improved play on the left side, particularly replacing Cam Erving. Dennis Daley started last week but injured his glute mid-game. Daley gave way to rookie Brady Christensen, who played 80% of the snaps. This was Christensen's most positive action to date, and if he can contribute at left tackle going forward, this would be a huge return for the third-round pick. Daley has been practicing in full and both should be available this week. Meanwhile, Michael Jordan has quietly stepped in at left guard, and done a decent job as Pat Elflein moved to center. This reshuffled line still ranks in the lower part of the grades, but they are slightly improved. They check in at 27th before traveling to face a halfway decent Miami defensive front.
Tampa Bay down 6
Left guard Ali Marpet was forced from Monday Night Football with what coaches called an abdomen injury, which they later clarified to a strained oblique. Marpet did not practice mid-week and will likely miss this weekend's tough matchup at Indianapolis. The Buccaneers' line doesn't have any official All-Pro's but Marpet is their leader, one of the most underrated guards in the game. Aaron Stinnie, who stepped in for Alex Cappa at right guard during last year's Super Bowl victory will step in and likely do a decent job. However this is a hit to cohesion, and the Tampa Bay offensive line falls from third to ninth on the injury news.
New Orleans down 3
Rookie tackle Landon Young (sixth round, Kentucky) made his first career start last week against Philadelphia. Young injured his foot in the contest and will require season-ending surgery. Young had been playing because the team was without both starting tackles in Terron Armstead (knee and shoulder) Ryan Ramczyk (knee). This is a short week for the Saints, hosting Buffalo on Thanksgiving Night. While Ramcyzk appears to be out, Armstead has been practicing and is officially questionable. Assuming Armstead can go and James Hurst starts for Ramczyk, the Saints' grade falls to twelfth. If both starters are out again, Jordan Mills would get the call and their grade would fall to the mid-twenties.
Green Bay down 17
All Pro left guard Elgton Jenkins tore his ACL last week during the loss at Minnesota, and he has been placed on season-ending injured reserve. With David Bakhtiari undergoing a small arthroscopic cleanup procedure this week, pushing his return to December, the team will turn to Yosh Nijman and Jon Runyan Jr. to start for a few weeks at least. The offense was used to not having Bakhtiari but it was only because of the elite play of Jenkins. Without them both, and with quarterback Aaron Rodgers nursing a toe injury, the pass protection wheels might fall off against a very dangerous Los Angeles Rams' defensive front coming off a bye week. The Packers' offensive line currently ranks 18th.
Detroit down 4
Right guard Halapoulivaati Vaitai was forced from last week's loss against Cleveland with a concussion. Vaitai is in the league's protocol and will not play this Thanksgiving Day against Chicago. Undrafted rookie Tommy Kraemer from Notre Dame replaced Vaitai during the contest, and with swing tackle Matt Nelson still out with an ankle injury, Kraemer will get his first career start on national television. This feels like it could be an opportunity for Kraemer, as the team has long been disappointed with Vaitai's play. The Lions' offensive line ranks 21st before facing a vulnerable Chicago defensive front without Khalil Mack.
Seattle down 10
Right tackle Brandon Shell missed the final series of the loss against the Cardinals with a shoulder injury. Shell did not practice this week and seems highly questionable for this week. With swing tackle Jamarco Jones out with a back injury, the team might be forced to start rookie Jake Curhan (Cal-Berkley, undrafted). In other news, left tackle Duane Brown has been uncharacteristically leaky in pass protection, and he's at the point in his career where it's fair to wonder how much he has left in the gas tank. It all adds up to a ten-slot downgrade before traveling across the country to face Washington on Monday Night. If Shell plays, the Seahawks would rank about 12th.
Las Vegas down 2
Left guard John Simpson was forced from the loss against Cincinnati with an injury to his ribs. With a short week before facing Dallas on Thanksgiving, the team will likely turn to Jordan Simmons to replace Simpson. While these players have similar individual grades, the model prefers the cohesion the Simpson has accrued over the course of the season. The Raiders' offensive line ranks 25th.
Denver down 3
Left tackle Garett Bolles had the bye week to heal his ankle injury but was added to the league's COVID list this week and will likely miss the home game against the Los Angeles Chargers. Bolles technically could play with two negative tests before Sunday but his high ankle sprain likely proves the tiebreaker. Calvin Anderson will likely get another start for Bolles. At right tackle, Bobby Massie also has an ankle injury, but he has been practicing and his status is officially questionable. Assuming Massie plays but Bolles doesn't it's a three-slot downgrade to 30th overall in the rankings.
ARZ - In what appears to be a coaching decision, RG Max Garcia played most of the snaps for Josh Jones during the win over Seattle. Jones has started most of the year but could be benched. In other-other news, Sean Harlow played 100% of snaps for LG Justin Pugh. Pugh will the bye week to heal.
BUF - With Jon Feliciano (calf) still on injured reserve and Spencer Brown on the Covid list, the team will start Cody Ford again, this time against New Orleans. The offense clearly looks different with Ford, who started both recent losses against Jacksonville and Indianapolis, but not the blowout win over the New York Jets.
CLE - RT Jack Conklin has been designated by the team to return from IR. Conklin's elbow could be in good enough shape to send Blake Hance to the bench against Baltimore this week. However, Conklin has been hard to trust this season, so he is not included in this week's model. Should Conklin make his return, the Browns' offensive line would actually rank #1 this week.
IND - LG Quenton Nelson struggled through half the snaps last week against Buffalo. Nelson has been limited by an ankle injury for weeks and has called this his most difficult season so far. Nelson remains in the model but it would not be surprising if Chris Reed got the start this week against Tampa Bay.
KCC - RT Lucas Niang (ribs) and Mike Remmers (knee) will have the bye week to heal. If one of them can get healthy enough to replace Andrew Wylie, this group could be in play for the #1 ranking down the stretch.
NYJ - RG Laurent Duvernay-Tardif started for Greg Van Roten in the loss against Miami. Like Van Roten, Duvernay-Tardif was decent in run blocking but awful in pass protection, giving up seven pressures on the day. This could be a case of rust, as Duvernay-Tardif has not played since 2019. But his current form is not enough of an upgrade to move the needle.
NYG - LT Andrew Thomas returned and played 100% of snaps Monday Night against Tampa Bay. Thomas return sends Matt Peart to the bench. This is still a very shaky group and cannot be upgraded on the news.
PIT - LG Kevin Dotson was officially moved to the injured reserve prior to the game against the LA Chargers. J.C Henssenauer started but gave way to Joe Haeg due to injury. The two managed a 3:2 split with Haeg getting more reps. Look for a similar mix as the season concludes.
WFT - RT Sam Cosmi (hip) started last week's win over Carolina but was forced from the game. C Tyler Larsen (knee) had a similar day and, despite the extra day of rest, both are likely out against Seattle on Monday Night. Cornelius Lucas and Wes Schweitzer will replace these players. There is no downgrade as Schweitzer's ability upgrade over Larsen offsets the hit to cohesion. Cosmi could be better than Lucas long-term but right now they are similar players. The WFT offensive line ranks 13th.
|1||Philadelphia||3||32.9||A+||A++||A||5.0||Left side ability upgrade.|
|2||Indianapolis||0||32.8||A+||A+||A+||4.6||Monitor LG Quenton Nelson (ankle - still in ranks).|
|3||Kansas City||2||32.5||A+||A+||A+||5.0||BYE WEEK|
|5||Cleveland||2||32.3||A||A+||A-||5.0||Monitor RT Jack Conklin (elbow - not in ranks), possible #1 line if he returns.|
|9||Tampa Bay||-6||31.5||A-||A-||A-||4.6||LG Ali Marpet (abdomen - not in ranks) likely out, Aaron Stinnie to replace.|
|11||LA Chargers||5||31.1||B+||B+||B+||4.8||Left side ability upgrade.|
|12||New Orleans||-2||30.8||B+||A-||B||4.6||Monitor LT Terron Armstead (knee, shoulder - in ranks). RT Ryan Ramcyzk (knee - not in ranks) likely out, James Hurst or Jordan Mills to replace.|
|15||Buffalo||0||30.6||B||B+||B-||4.8||RT Spencer Brown (COVID - not in ranks) likely out. Daryl Williams to RT, Cody Ford to RG.|
|18||Green Bay||-17||30.1||B-||B-||B-||5.0||LG Elgton Jenkins (ACL) to season-ending IR, David Bakhtiari (calf - not in ranks) week to week with scope surgery, Yosh Nijman to replace.|
|19||Tennessee||2||29.9||B-||B||C+||4.8||RG Nate Davis (concussion - not in ranks) likely out, Aaron Brewer to replace.|
|21||Detroit||-4||29.8||B-||C+||B||4.6||RG Halapoulivaati Vaitai (concussion) likely out, Tommy Kraemer to replace.|
|23||Minnesota||2||29.7||C+||B-||C||5.0||C Garrett Bradbury benched for Mason Cole.|
|25||Las Vegas||-2||29.4||C+||C+||C+||4.8||LG John Simpson (ribs - not in ranks) likely out, Jordan Simmons to replace.|
|27||Carolina||3||29.2||C||C+||C-||4.8||Left side upgrade|
|28||Pittsburgh||0||29.2||C||C+||C-||4.6||LG Kevin Dotson (ankle - not in ranks) to IR, Joe Haeg to replace.|
|30||Denver||-3||29.0||C||C-||C+||5.0||Monitor RT Bobby Massie (ankle - in ranks). LT Garett Bolles (ankle/COVID - not in ranks) likely out, Calvin Anderson to replace.|