Peter Konz is an enigmatic Wisconsinite. He's an eater of cheese, chugger of beer, and all-around man child. All that said, his football abilities are questionable right now. I hate to say that, but it's the truth. He was arguably the best center in college football two years ago, and now he's a middling backup. At 6'5 and 317 pounds, he not lacking in the size department. But he just can't get it together. It really begs the question: how does Konz figure into the Falcons' plans going forward?
Let's consider the numbers. Konz only gave up 2 sacks playing center this season. Not too shabby, except that he gave up 14 hurries. His pass blocking efficiency as a center in 2013 is 96.6, 26th in the league. In short, he's a below-average center right now, statistically speaking. Joe Hawley not only took his job, he's played very well in recent weeks. This after Konz beat out Hawley in decisive fashion during the pre-season.
I don't think it's fair to say that Konz's play directly limited Matt Ryan's overall production this year. Notwithstanding an offensive line that has collectively allowed 167 pressures (sacks and hurries combined), Ryan has had some impressive games. But Konz is one of several players along the offensive front that aren't getting it done. In turn, Ryan's numbers have suffered. Ryan is currently 14th in PFF's QB rating, behind players like Ryan Tannehill, Jay Cutler, and Tony Romo.
Konz is under contract through the 2015 season, and given how this regime sticks by its early round linemen, I'd imagine he will have the opportunity to atone for a lackluster 2013. Even so, his transition to guard isn't a guaranteed solution. Gerald McCoy showed us that, completely overpowering Konz en route to a 3 sack game recently. What's more, while he got it together towards the tail end of 2012, Konz was overall pretty bad at guard as a rookie. His pass blocking efficiency was 4th worst among guards last year.
So what say you all? How will the Falcons use Konz going forward? Is he just having a hard time adjusting to the pro game, or will he go down in Falcons history as a player we drafted way too early?