The story of the week (maybe the season) with offensive lines is teams versus players. The highest-profile battle is Washington and Trent Williams, but there's another ugly one with the Jets and Kelechi Osemele. Both involve ongoing off-field battles.
Williams was a holdout and maybe money had something to do with it, but he says the big issue is the team doctors misdiagnosing a cancerous growth on his head that could have killed him. He reported to the team, perhaps hoping to be traded, but failed his physical due to a helmet causing him pain. Lots to unpack there, but Washington is bringing in a third-party arbitrator. Long story short, he won't be playing for Washington.
Osemele recently had a shoulder surgery that the Jets apparently didn't think was necessary; they wanted him to play through it. Rather than placing him on IR after the surgery, they released him. This one will also involve the NFLPA. Jets and Osemele are going their separate ways, but there will be some fighting first.
In other news...
The Browns struck out in their reported efforts to acquire Williams. They've also tired of seeing Greg Robinson at left tackle. They're now going with Justin McCray. Not a downgrade, but not an ideal situation, either.
The 49ers have been operating without both tackles, but Joe Staley is nearing a return. He was able to do some work in practice last week and will probably be available in Week 10. The line looked fine for Tevin Coleman a week ago, not so much last night (though Matt Breida looked fine). Anyway, line will benefit from Staley's return. Mike McGlinchey is another couple of weeks away with his knee injury.
The Arizona offensive looked oddly decent against San Francisco. Kyler Murray was sacked 3 times, but that seems to be the nature of the offense; his protection didn't look horrible, and there were some holes for Kenyan Drake to run through. Upgrades are still needed, but not a hopeless line these days.
The Patriots have been getting by with Marshall Newhouse at left tackle, but might get Isaiah Wynn back. He's been on IR with a toe injury, but the team says he'll resume practicing. He'll be eligible to play after New England's Week 10 bye.
Kansas City's line has been operating without Eric Fisher and Andrew Wylie. But Wylie is practicing in full and should return this week, and Fisher is a possibility -- if not this week, then next. Getting those guys back and Patrick Mahomes (probably next week) would help the offense look more like what was expected.
Updated offensive line rankings are below. Breakdown of how the current starters for each team are grades is included at our Facebook page at this link.
|OFFENSIVE LINE RANKINGS|