The Falcons offensive line has had some issues. Number one, the season started off with Wes Schweitzer getting abused by Akiem Hicks in Chicago. The team’s second best offensive lineman, Ryan Schraeder, missed about 2.5 games due to a concussion, and his replacement was (gulp) Ty Sambrailo.
You may have expected a Miami Dolphins OL coach level disaster. Nope. In fact, Pro Football Focus has Atlanta as one of the league’s best offensive lines.
Ranking every offensive line in the NFL by PFF grade. Where does your team rank?https://t.co/Aur330dNEp pic.twitter.com/RFPXnQfObJ— Pro Football Focus (@PFF) October 11, 2017
We know Alex Mack has to be the one doing the heavy lifting here.
The Falcons offense remained one that relies heavily on outside zone runs – and play actions off of it – even with the departure of former offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan. They have run 54 such plays, tied for the sixth-most in the league. They average the ninth-most yards before contact on these runs with 1.98 yards, which is largely due to center Alex Mack.
The most notable thing here is Schweitzer is not a weak spot. He had a rooooough first week, but has otherwise improved seemingly each week. Dare I say it, he could be a strength along the offensive line down the stretch. We have seen some improvement from Sambrailo as well, and he’s not as big of a liability as expected.
Schraeder is almost certainly returning this week. The Atlanta offensive line has played very well, and they seem to be headed even further up this list.