Through two games, the Los Angeles Rams’ offensive line has played spectacularly. LT Andrew Whitworth, LG Rodger Saffold, C John Sullivan, RG Austin Blythe and RT Rob Havenstein have made the offensive outputs possible in both the run and passing games.
So it shouldn’t surprise anyone to see them ranked third overall in the entire NFL at this point by Pro Football Focus:
Left Tackle: Andrew Whitworth, 75.4
Left Guard: Rodger Saffold, 78.7
Center: John Sullivan, 63.0
Right Guard: Austin Blythe, 77.1
Right Tackle: Rob Havenstein, 77.8
If you thought the Rams’ offensive line would take a step back with aging veterans at left tackle and center, you’re sorely mistaken through two weeks. Not only does the team currently have the highest run-block grade of any line in the league, but Los Angeles’ big men have the highest pass-block grade, as well. One of the pleasant surprises along the line has been right guard Austin Blythe, who is filling in for Jamon Brown. Blythe currently ranks fourth among qualifying guards in overall grade and has allowed just one pressure in two games.
The most impressive part about this? The lack of a weak point. Sullivan’s grade of 63.0, the lowest of the five, is the highest grade in the entire NFL from each team’s lowest-graded player. So while many linemen around the league grade out higher than Saffold’s 78.7, the highest Rams OL grade, they play on teams that have weaker points than Sullivan. PFF’s #1 overal line, the New Orleans Saints’, has two players graded in the 80s, but LG Andrus Peat earned a 58.6 grade. The Philadelphia Eagles’ line at #2 had two players in the 50s.
So this isn’t a line being held up by one or two guys. It’s a joint success.
POLL: Which unit has been better for the #LARams thus far, OL or WR?— TurfShowTimes (@TurfShowTimes) September 17, 2018
And of course, we should point out that RG Austin Blythe is performing well above expectations as a fill-in for RG Jamon Brown who has missed the first two games due to a suspension. Head Coach Sean McVay has a very difficult decision on his hands there for Week 3...
Austin Blythe has been impressive for the Rams so far this year. pic.twitter.com/wf2MUc76ho— Pro Football Focus (@PFF) September 18, 2018
But of course, this is the kind of problem you want to have. The Rams have one of the best offensive lines in the NFL even without one of their starters.
The question is if they can keep it up.