We’re only entering the second week of the season, but the O-line has already come under a lot of scrutiny (and deservingly so).
Atlanta can not win games if the O-line allows defenses to get in Matt Ryan’s face as much as they did in New Orleans. The unit looked great early on, but struggled with picking up blitzes later in the game. The center is usually responsible in assigning blockers to pick up certain defenders. Todd “Mud Duck” McClure, the face of the line for 12 seasons, was a pro at this aspect of the game.
Peter Konz knows he has a ways to go before he gets to McClure’s level, but he’s working to reach it sooner rather than later.
“There’s more we can do,” said the 2nd-year player from Wisconsin. “There’s always something more we can do. I gotta know each guy on the line… Even the running backs and tight ends… and what they need for me to call. So I’ll work with them and try to get that done.”
This is a new look O-line, so it will take time for them to mesh and play together as a unit. Peter knows that analysts consider their unit to be the weak link on a loaded offense.
“I love being the underdog,” said Konz. “I love being under the radar because that just gives us an opportunity to show everyone in this country that we can be the best O-line.”
They will have plenty of opportunities to show their progress starting this week. The St. Louis Rams defense is coming off a solid performance in Arizona. Former 1st-round pick Robert Quinn is starting to emerge as an elite DE with his 3 sack and 2 forced fumble performance. He, along with Pro Bowler Chris Long can cause nightmares on the edge.
They will certainly be tested this Sunday.
*Quotes courtesy of Atlanta Falcons.com