1. Cleveland Browns (Previous Rank: 1)
In the first half against the Chiefs, when their offensive line was fully healthy, the Browns showed why they were projected to be the best O-line in the NFL again in 2021. Losing Wirfs hurt, and they started to allow a little more pressure in the second half, but overall, this group had a strong performance in week one. They helped pave the way for the Browns to put up 457 yards of total offense, including 153 yards rushing at nearly six yards per carry. Because they have so many good players up front, Cleveland can survive without Wirfs, who went down with an ankle injury and is currently day-to-day.
2. New Orleans Saints (Previous Rank: 3)
The Saints put on an all-around dominant performance in their 38-3 win vs. The Packers, and they dominated up front as well. The Saints offensive line did not give up a single sack or tackle for loss in the game
3. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Previous Rank: 4)
The Bucs passing game got off to a great start against Dallas on opening night, and their offensive line played a large role in that performance. They gave up a little pressure from the edges but nothing major and allowed no sacks. The interior looked especially dominant, but that probably had more to do with the Cowboys having one of the worst group of DTs in the NFL.
4. San Francisco 49ers (Previous Rank: 7)
The 49ers were one of the best offensive lines in week one. They had a good game run blocking against the Lions, as they helped pave the way for 131 rushing yards on 4.7 YPC. But the 49ers are expected to be a strong run blocking team. They may have been even better pass blocking as they only allowed two pressures and no sacks.
5. Philadelphia Eagles (Previous Rank: 8)
The Eagles had one of the more surprising week one performances as they dominated the Falcons 32-6. They were fantastic in pass pro, as they only allowed six pressures and no sacks in 41 pass plays. They were not as strong in the run game, but explosive running from Hurts and Sanders, combined with a good offensive scheme, made it a moot point.
6. Dallas Cowboys (Previous Rank: 6)
It looked like the Cowboys were back in business on their offensive line after their strong outing against a talented Bucs front. Tyron Smith and La’el Collins were back in the lineup and played well, especially Smith, who was the best pass blocking lineman in the NFL in week one. Zach Martin was also scheduled to be back for week two, so the Cowboys looked like they would be in great shape. Unfortunately, Collins is suspended for the next five games, and Terrance Steele is expected to start at RT, which is not good for the Cowboys.
7. Los Angeles Rams (Previous Rank: 10)
The Rams played an all-around great game, and the offensive line played a big role. Rob Havenstein and Whitworth are expected to be good, but if David Edwards and Brian Allen are going to play at a high level all season, the Rams offensive line will be in the top five conversation.
8. Arizona Cardinals (Previous Rank: 9)
The Cardinals were a good pass blocking team in 2020 and picked up where they left off in week one. They only allowed two pressures and no sacks against the Titans. They do not have the personnel to be a great run-blocking team, but they were serviceable in the run game as a unit.
9. New England Patriots (Previous Rank: 2)
The Patriots offensive line did not live up to its pre-season expectations in week one, and their tackle play was the biggest reason why. Wynn did not play well, and Trent Brown only lasted seven snaps before exiting the game with a calf injury. Brown is now day-to-day, and the Patriots need him back for week two because Justin Herron and Yasir Durant are a significant drop-off from Brown.
10. Indianapolis Colts (Previous Rank: 5)
It was a rough day all around for the Colts on Sunday, and the offensive line did not help matters. They allowed three sacks, 16 pressures, and were not that impressive in the run game either. Quentin Nelson was their only player that had a good day, and even his performance was not up to his high standard.
11. Los Angeles Chargers (Previous Rank: 15)
The Chargers were the OLS offensive line to watch in 2021, and they got off to a good start. The Chargers O-line averaged over 12 allowed pressures in 2020, so to start this season only allowing five must feel good. There were some oddities, as Corey Linsley struggled in the run game. Matt Feiler, who is typically a one-dimensional pass pro guy, struggled in pass pro but was the team’s best run blocker.
12. Seattle Seahawks (Previous Rank: 16)
Seattle was on fire in the first half of their convincing win over the Colts. The entire Seattle offense seemed to take their foot off the gas in the second half, which hurt the overall performance of the O-line. The interior was leaking pressure, but Duane Brown was his usual self in pass pro, and Brandon Shell looks like his career year last season was not a fluke. Neither tackle allowed a pressure or sack.
13. Washington Football Team (Previous Rank: 12)
The Washington line had mixed performances as all their guys were either good in the run game and bad in pass pro or vice versa. Brandon Scherff and Samuel Cosmi ran block well, but both struggled in the passing game. Especially Cosmi, who gave up a sack and allowed four pressures. Charles Leno, Chase Roullier, and Ereck Flowers were all positives in pass pro as none of them allowed more than one pressure, but they left a lot to be desired in the running game.
14. Green Bay Packers (Previous Rank: 21)
Despite the Packers team laying an egg, their offensive line came to play. Elgton Jenkins did a great job filling in at LT and Josh Myers had a strong debut at C. Lucas Patrick and Billy Turner were also solid. The only bad performance came from Royce Newman, who will be out of the lineup once David Bakhtiari returns, so the Packers should feel very encouraged about their offensive line moving forward.
15. Houston Texans (Previous Rank: 24)
The NFL world expected so little from Houston this season that even beating a bad team like the Jaguars warranted praise. Marcus Cannon stole the show for this unit, as he looked great in his first game since 2019. He allowed no pressures or sacks. Tunsil was good in pass pro, but the Texans need him to start run blocking well again. Tytus Howard struggled at guard, but Max Scharping and Justin Britt were good. If they can consistently get solid play from two of their three interior guys to go along with their strong tackle play, the Texans could be a sneaky good offensive line in 2021.
16. Kansas City Chiefs (Previous Rank: 11)
It was not a great outing for the Chiefs offensive line, but that was to be expected with three rookies starting. What hurts matters is that the two veterans were not at their best. Orlando Brown tied for the team lead with five pressures, and Thuney was the most penalized with two. Mahomes and the Chiefs skill guys are so great they can overcome a lot, but the Chiefs need Brown and Thuney to be at their best while they attempt to break in three new guys.
17. Cincinnati Bengals (Previous Rank: 25)
The Bengals offensive line had a good outing as they helped get a tough OT victory over the Vikings. The addition of Riley Reiff is paying early dividends, as he was one of the better tackles in pass pro in week one. Williams played well too and if those two can play at a high level all year, Cincinnati will have a formidable tackle duo. Quinton Spain also had a good game at guard. The only problem was Trey Hopkins, who was one of the worst pass-blocking centers in week one, allowing two sacks and three pressures.
18. Tennessee Titans (Previous Rank: 13)
The Titans offensive line had one of the most disappointing week one performances. They struggled in both phases of the game as every starter gave up either a sack or TFL, the only team to accomplish such a feat in week one. They were especially bad in pass pro, as they allowed 17 pressures and six sacks (five to one guy). Taylor Lewan is getting all the headlines for his poor performance, and he was bad, but Nate Davis was even worse as he allowed five pressures from a guard position.
19. Detroit Lions (Previous Rank: 14)
Regardless of the score, the Lions were thoroughly outplayed by the 49ers in week one, including upfront. Despite a strong outing from Frank Ragnow, and solid debut from Penei Sewell, the other three starters were just so bad it did not matter. Jonah Jackson’s nine allowed pressures were the most of any guard in week one. With Taylor Decker headed for IR after finger surgery, things are not going to get much better anytime soon.
20. Denver Broncos (Previous Rank: 18)
The Broncos won easily against a bad Giants team, but their offensive line has some work to do. Do not let the 165 yards rushing and 5.9 YPC fool you. The Broncos were one of the worst run blocking teams in the league in week one and heavily benefited from one 70-yard run. Bolles was great a year ago, but OLS was skeptical if he would be able to duplicate that level of play since he had only done it one of four years. It is still very early, but based on week one, the odds are that he cannot.
21. Buffalo Bills (Previous Rank: 19)
Josh Allen’s week one performance has garnered heavy criticism, and while he did not play well, it is not fair that the Bills offensive line is being let off the hook. They were one of the worst pass-blocking O-lines in the NFL for week one as they allowed 23 pressures and had six costly penalties. The combo of Dawkins and Williams is supposed to be one of the better tackle duos in the NFL, but on Sunday, they allowed a combined 10 pressures. Jon Feliciano was the worst of group, as he allowed eight pressures, tied for third-most in week one of any lineman.
22. Baltimore Ravens (Previous Rank: 17)
The Titans had the most disappointing overall week one performance, but the Ravens were not far behind. They ran block well, but the Ravens had the worst week one pass pro performance as a group. Coming into the year, a team with Ronnie Stanley and Alejandro Villanueva as their starting tackles would probably feel pretty good about their ability to pass protect. Well, that was far from the case in week one, as they allowed a combined 19 pressures. Villanueva led all linemen with 10 allowed pressures and tied for most allowed sacks (2). Stanley did not allow a sack, but his nine allowed pressures tied for the second most of any lineman. Had the Ravens had any other QB besides Lamar Jackson on Monday Night, they would have lost in regulation by a lot more points.
23. Atlanta Falcons (Previous Rank: 20)
The Falcons had a miserable day, losing to what was supposed to be a bad Eagles team 32-6. The Falcons offensive line played a big part in the disappointing performance as they are on the shortlist for worst week one O-lines. They allowed 18 pressures and gave up three sacks, but when the Falcons offensive line coach turns on their week one film, it will be the terrible run blocking that most stands out. They allowed four tackles for loss, in large part due to both Jake Matthews and Kaleb McGary routinely coming up short in the run game. If McGary cannot run block better, the Falcons are going to be in huge trouble. Everyone knows Matthews struggles run blocking, but he makes up for it in pass pro. But McGary was bad in both phases, and that makes it difficult to play around Matthews.
24. Jacksonville Jaguars (Previous Rank: 22)
The Jaguars have two good offensive linemen in Brandon Linder and Andrew Norwell, and they both showed up. Linder can play better in the run game, but he was one of the better pass-blocking centers in week one. Taylor was ok and appears to be getting a little better. Cam Robinson still is not reliable in pass pro. A.J. Cann’s performance in pass pro hurt more than anything, as he allowed seven pressures, more than the other four guys combined.
25. Pittsburgh Steelers (Previous Rank: 32)
Many questioned what the Steelers were doing after they let all their veteran guys walk and failed to replace them with any high picks or established players. Well, given how Villanueva and Feiler looked in week one, and the fact that Pouncey is retired, and Decastro might as well be, it looks like the Steelers maybe knew what they were doing. Their offensive line was by no means impressive in week one, and they still struggled in the run game, but they held their own in pass pro. If they play how they did in week one, they will not be the worst offensive line in the league.
26. Miami Dolphins (Previous Rank: 30)
The Dolphins played better than expected upfront in their week one victory over the Patriots. They only allowed eight pressures and no sacks. Austin Jackson was out with covid-19, but Eichenberg looks like he might need to stay at LT. He was slated to play LG and moved to LT due to Jackson being out, but he certainly looked better in pass pro than Jackson looked most of 2020.
27. Chicago Bears (Previous Rank: 26)
The Bears were expected to be one of the weaker offensive lines in the NFL, so it did not help matters to throw them to wolves against Aaron Donald and the elite Rams defense in week one in the primetime Sunday night game. The tackle play was serviceable overall. What killed the Bears was that all three of their interior guys had bad games. The guards are supposed to be the strength of this O-line, but Sunday night Cody Whitehair and James Daniels did not get the job done.
28. Carolina Panthers (Previous Rank: 28)
Moton was in a similar situation as O’Neill this week as he was his team’s only reliable offensive lineman in pass pro. Matt Paradis at least showed up to help in the run game. Pat Elflein and Dennis Daley both struggled at guard. Cam Ervin had a good game run blocking but is still a liability in pass pro.
29. Las Vegas Raiders (Previous Rank: 29)
The Raiders offensive line is very young after they traded away three starters, and they played like it on Monday night. Kolton Miller was impressive and should easily be this unit’s best player. Jermaine Eluemunor did a solid job filling in at RG for Richie Incognito. Everybody else struggled, especially rookie Alex Leatherwood, who allowed two sacks and five pressures.
30. New York Jets (Previous Rank: 23)
The Jets offensive line was dealt a huge blow with the loss of Mekhi Becton. He is slated to miss 4-6 weeks with a dislocated knee cap. The good news is Mogan Moses looked good when he came in off the bench. The bad news is George Fant moved over to LT. Even with the Becton injury, the Jets must be concerned about their interior. Vera-Tucker looks like he will be a good run blocker, but he allowed six pressures and a sack and was the Jets worst pass protector. Van Rotten and McGovern struggled as well.
31. New York Giants (Previous Rank: 31)
OLS expected the Giants offensive line to be bad, and while they certainly did not have a great game in week one, there were a lot worse offensive lines than theirs on Sunday. The big deal from Sunday’s game for New York has to be the fact Andrew Thomas looked much improved from his rookie year.
32. Minnesota Vikings (Previous Rank: 27)
The expectation coming into this season for the Vikings offensive line was that they had one good player and that is what was on display Sunday. Brian O’Neill was the only player that did not allow a pressure. Rashod Hill and Ezra Clevleand struggled, and Garrett Bradbury remains one of the NFL’s worst starting centers.