Pro Football weekly

Comment | Print |

Patriots' patchwork O-line remains effective

About the Author

Recent posts by Kevin Fishbain

Dolphins snag former Ravens LB Ellerbe

Posted March 12, 2013 @ 5:59 p.m.

Broncos sign former Chargers OG Vasquez

Posted March 12, 2013 @ 5:20 p.m.

Dolphins land WR Wallace

Posted March 12, 2013 @ 5:13 p.m.

Bills release QB Fitzpatrick

Posted March 12, 2013 @ 4:48 p.m.

Eagles release CB Asomugha

Posted March 12, 2013 @ 3:58 p.m.

Related Stories

2013 NFL draft order

Posted April 25, 2013 @ 12:46 p.m.

2013 NFC free-agent moves, by team

Posted April 15, 2013 @ 12:21 p.m.

2013 AFC free-agent moves, by team

Posted April 15, 2013 @ 12:21 p.m.

Warmack, Cooper scouting reports

Posted April 15, 2013 @ 11:02 a.m.

Elam, Vaccaro scouting reports

Posted April 12, 2013 @ 9:26 a.m.

Milliner, Mathieu scouting reports

Posted April 11, 2013 @ 1:48 p.m.

Te'o, Ogletree scouting reports

Posted April 10, 2013 @ 12:57 p.m.

Lotulelei, Werner scouting reports

Posted April 09, 2013 @ 3:13 p.m.

Joeckel, Long scouting reports

Posted April 08, 2013 @ 11:35 a.m.

2013 preseason schedule

Posted April 04, 2013 @ 4:07 p.m.
Posted Nov. 23, 2012 @ 3:17 p.m. ET
By Kevin Fishbain

The Patriots have attempted the third-most passes in the NFL (424), and have been sacked the fourth-fewest times (15) this season. That number is impressive in itself, but even more so considering the different offensive line combinations they’ve been forced to use because of injuries.

In the Patriots’ Week 12 win over the Jets, ORT Sebastian Vollmer, who has been playing at a very high level this season, was inactive with back and knee injuries. Second-year OT Marcus Cannon started in his place, and Donald Thomas started at left guard for Logan Mankins (ankle, calf) — it was Thomas' sixth start of the season. The fifth different combination used by the Patriots up front pitched a shutout, allowing zero sacks and only one QB hit against an aggressive Jets defensive front.

This was a unit that has shown no drop-off after losing veterans C Dan Koppen and OG Brian Waters, and having to deal with injuries — C Ryan Wendell and OLT Nate Solder are the only O-linemen to start every game this season.

The unit is succeeding in the “next man up” philosophy in helping protect Tom Brady, who is having a career year. Said Brady following the team’s Week 11 win against the Colts, when both of his starting guards were out: “Well, they’re coached very hard and I think the expectations are for the position, not necessarily for the player, so when Logan’s not in there, you've got to go in there and play like Logan. Hopefully we get healthy at some point, but until then, that’s why there are 53 guys on the roster. Each of those guys can really step in when they need to.”

Follow Kevin Fishbain on Twitter

Comments ()


ABOUT TRUST ONLINE