Inside the Pylon’s Brandon Thorn broke down the Broncos offensive line performance after their week 1 win over the stout Panthers defense.
He came away very impressed with Denver’s performance.
I haven't had as much fun watching the DEN OL as I did this week in years. New Under the Microscope coming on them, it's a lot of fun.— Brandon Thorn (@VeteranScout) September 10, 2016
Here are some of the things that stuck out to me in the breakdown.
#1: Russell Okung is a major upgrade at LT
I think many of us were cautiously optimistic when Russell Okung was signed, and you can’t really beat his price this year. But for a guy that has often been hampered by injuries, many of us were rightfully skeptical of his impact.
However, Okung looks to be in top form and fully healthy out there, and that means, playing like a top shelf left tackle.
I realize this is a big if, but if Okung stays healthy he's a top 5 LT and the OL won't just be better than last year, it'll be a strength.— Brandon Thorn (@VeteranScout) September 10, 2016
He breaks down a couple plays that specifically hone in on Russell Okung as a run and pass blocker.
After having some of the worst tackle play in the league last year, it is nice to see such strong play from yet another solid round of free agency by Elway.
Okung is definitely on a great deal this year, but if he stays healthy and performs like he did in week 1, I could see us keeping him around.
If we pick up his option, he would be one of the higher paid LTs in the league, but if he plays like it this year, it would be worth pulling the trigger and locking him up as contracts continue to rise. It would essentially be paying him what we’ve had Ryan Clady on the books for over the last several years.
#2: Elway and Kubiak might actually know what they’re talking about
Count me as a skeptic when Kubiak and Elway talked this offseason about their hopes for the O-line and how they felt good about the guys we had.
@MitzSumilang I didn't believe Elway and Kubiak when they said they were happy with where we were on O-line. But things are looking good.— Jeffrey Essary (@JeffreyEssary) September 10, 2016
I was screaming for Josh Sitton when he was cut, and wondered what was wrong with Elway for not trying to shore up our biggest weakness.
Well, maybe it’s not our biggest weakness anymore.
I know it’s only one game, but it’s one game against a top 5 defense, and our guys looked pretty dang solid and played physical football.
Denver straight up lacked this sort of physicality/strength up front last year. Having a tone-setter on the OL is so beneficial.— Brandon Thorn (@VeteranScout) September 12, 2016
Here’s to more of this!
Would've helped an awful lot to have this LT/FB last yr. Demaryius doesn't get enough credit for his blocking either pic.twitter.com/KYf5dp1yQw— Brandon Thorn (@VeteranScout) September 9, 2016
Head on over to ITP and check out the full breakdown and come back and let’s talk about how awesome it will be to see our O-line dominate this year!