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Kansas City Offensive Line will test the importance of continuity this year


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11 hours ago, Mr. WEO said:

Regarding "continuity", allow me to quote an NFL owner:

 

“You have to have continuity,” If you keep changing things, nothing’s going to work.”

 

"We’re talking about continuity, and the players need that,” “Our coach needs to know that, through the good and the bad, there’s stability. The players need to know there’s stability".

I presume that's Christopher Johnson describing the situation at the NYJ.

*
Now just add "It's the fiscally responsible thing to do." and it's Ralph. 😁

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Bills did the same thing in 2019. Only Dawkins stayed. They had 5 new players including the TE. Morse, Ford, Spain, Feliciano, and Knox were all new in 2019.  My guess is continuity is overvalued

KC has done a great job of turning around their line this year, but I'm not sure were talking about how/if continuity will affect them.  I saw some chatter that it didnt help us, but Ive also heard a

Continuity is overrated when you're talking about returning Ducasse, Bodine, Miller, and Mills, that's for sure.  Having 4 new guys learning the scheme and getting on the same page with each other cou

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3 minutes ago, Ridgewaycynic2013 said:

I presume that's Christopher Johnson describing the situation at the NYJ.

*
Now just add "It's the fiscally responsible thing to do." and it's Ralph. 😁

 

 

Nope!

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3 hours ago, timekills17 said:
Relative importance to successful execution
Higher ---- -----------------> Lower
Availability talent scheme continuity player continuity

 

 

I'd rank them in that order. Mostly because as you go back up from right (lower importance) to left (higher importance) the lower import factor doesn't matter if the higher import matter doesn't exist.

 

The last 2 kinda fit together.  Could throw player scheme fit in there too.  The longer you have the same scheme the more likely you are to have players under contract who fit said scheme.  If you keep changing HC's you're likely changing offenses, defenses etc. You might draft a pass rushing OLB who isn't as good a fit with his hand in the dirt every play, or a guard who's big and built more for power rushing than zone.. I don't think you should get a coach to suit your roster, but it just adds to the challenges and turnover as a new coach.

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20 hours ago, Ethan in Portland said:

Bills did the same thing in 2019. Only Dawkins stayed. They had 5 new players including the TE. Morse, Ford, Spain, Feliciano, and Knox were all new in 2019. 

My guess is continuity is overvalued and one of those things that is nice if you have it.

 

Analytics showed that Offensive Line continuity was more important than upgrading the line in overall performance in a long study that was done spanning something like 20 years. I remember reading it in my Pro Football Prospectus 2007 edition.  Granted that is a while ago, but the basic premise remains...

 

The O-Line is effectively only as strong as a whole as their weakest link in that if one guy blows an assignment the QB is under immediate pressure no matter how well the other 4 do their job.  It also is key to understand how the guy next to you picks up blocks and how he gives help on blocks when called for.  Basically, there is a lot of places for errors to occur from missing an assignment, not knowing who you are supposed to block, being confused by the defensive alignment or not knowing how to properly block when receiving help that can ONLY be gained from live reps during game situations.  The more reps you have the more you "gel" as a unit.  This is why typically new units are not that great early in the year but tend to get better and better as the year goes on, and even better when held together for multiple years.

Edited by Big Turk
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21 hours ago, Ethan in Portland said:

Bills did the same thing in 2019. Only Dawkins stayed. They had 5 new players including the TE. Morse, Ford, Spain, Feliciano, and Knox were all new in 2019. 

My guess is continuity is overvalued and one of those things that is nice if you have it.


Continuity improves Oline play but talent is more important. The 2020 Oline was better than the 2019 Oline in part due to D Williams being added but also due to the fact that they played a season together. 

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14 hours ago, YattaOkasan said:

Thanks for the replies. So I can get on board with a lot of the talent over continuity discussion. 
 

any thoughts on the second two items for KC OL?  They are again not very deep at OT, and they might have to pull some UFA magic again next year to get another good line.

 

Long term I think it’s risky to not invest much more to the line when you are paying Mahomes so much. 

I suspect few teams are deep at any spot on the OL.  I disagree with McD at times but having versatile OL guys that can play multiple spots is the correct approach. Guys like Felicano and Bates that can fill in anywhere in a pinch is a smart depth move especially when these guys do nothing on ST's.  Bills look liek they have depth now but they won't by the end of camp.  Barring injury Spencer Brown will make the roster which really only leaves one other spot for swing tackle. They can go with Bates who can play center in a pinch or they may go with someone else who can play G.  

1 hour ago, billsfan89 said:


Continuity improves Oline play but talent is more important. The 2020 Oline was better than the 2019 Oline in part due to D Williams being added but also due to the fact that they played a season together. 

The 2020 line did not play a single snap together all season due to injury.  The top 5 were not on the filed for even one play last year.  Assuming Ford is still the LG starter, and everyone stays healthy in camp, the season opener for 2021 will be the first game that lines up Dawkins, Ford, Morse, Feliciano, and Williams.   

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2 hours ago, Big Turk said:

Analytics showed that Offensive Line continuity was more important than upgrading the line in overall performance in a long study that was done spanning something like 20 years. I remember reading it in my Pro Football Prospectus 2007 edition.  Granted that is a while ago, but the basic premise remains...

 

The O-Line is effectively only as strong as a whole as their weakest link in that if one guy blows an assignment the QB is under immediate pressure no matter how well the other 4 do their job.  It also is key to understand how the guy next to you picks up blocks and how he gives help on blocks when called for.  Basically, there is a lot of places for errors to occur from missing an assignment, not knowing who you are supposed to block, being confused by the defensive alignment or not knowing how to properly block when receiving help that can ONLY be gained from live reps during game situations.  The more reps you have the more you "gel" as a unit.  This is why typically new units are not that great early in the year but tend to get better and better as the year goes on, and even better when held together for multiple years.

 

Think of the movie 300 and how the Spartans worked together to form a wall of shields, which was difficult for the enemy to penetrate.

The offensive line is similar.  Communication is very important, and understanding where the other blockers are going to be.

 

At the same time, you can't just bring back terrible players every year, and expect to succeed due to continuity.  That's why I think it was brilliant for Beane/McDermott to totally overhaul the O-Line all in a single offseason.  In a sense they ripped off the band-aid, and can now focus on keeping the same guys in place.

 

The Bills switched out a whopping 4 starters in 2019, with Dion Dawkins as the only returner.

Last year, they kept Dawkins, Morse and Feliciano in place.  They added Daryl Williams, dumped Quinton Spain and pushed Cody Ford inside.

This year they return the same starting five, and they all should be playing in the same spots.

 

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On 5/20/2021 at 3:36 PM, Ethan in Portland said:

Bills did the same thing in 2019. Only Dawkins stayed. They had 5 new players including the TE. Morse, Ford, Spain, Feliciano, and Knox were all new in 2019. 

My guess is continuity is overvalued and one of those things that is nice if you have it.


It’s only as good as the talent you are keeping. 
 

how many times did we bring back mediocre players but have off seasons filled with chatter about how the roster would be so much better because we would have the same mediocre player again?

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On 5/20/2021 at 11:51 PM, YattaOkasan said:

Thanks for the replies. So I can get on board with a lot of the talent over continuity discussion. 
 

any thoughts on the second two items for KC OL?  They are again not very deep at OT, and they might have to pull some UFA magic again next year to get another good line.

 

Long term I think it’s risky to not invest much more to the line when you are paying Mahomes so much. 

They’re plenty deep at OT.  Brown and Niang will likely be the starting tackles.  Remembers played RT most of the season backing up Schwartz.  Kyle Long could be used at Tackle, and so could Thuney if needed.

 

Reid hasn’t drafted a Tackle in any round since Fisher was the number 1 overall pick, and he’s managed to get decent line play for years.  This year they traded a first rounder for a LT, drafted the top C in the draft in the second round, and gave Thuney a record contract at G.  Then they drafted Trey Smith at G, signed Kyle Long, Austin Blythe, and have LDT and Niang coming back from their COVID opt outs.

 

How much more do you think they should have invested?

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On 5/22/2021 at 12:02 PM, Billl said:

They’re plenty deep at OT.  Brown and Niang will likely be the starting tackles.  Remembers played RT most of the season backing up Schwartz.  Kyle Long could be used at Tackle, and so could Thuney if needed.

 

Reid hasn’t drafted a Tackle in any round since Fisher was the number 1 overall pick, and he’s managed to get decent line play for years.  This year they traded a first rounder for a LT, drafted the top C in the draft in the second round, and gave Thuney a record contract at G.  Then they drafted Trey Smith at G, signed Kyle Long, Austin Blythe, and have LDT and Niang coming back from their COVID opt outs.

 

How much more do you think they should have invested?

Sorry for delay in reply.

 

Brown is def good but I dont think anyone (including Chiefs) knows what Niang will be.  He could be good and that will solve a lot of their problems but its hoping for a 3rd round rookie to be a starter at this point.  Long and Thuney do not particularly scare me at Tackle (Thuney does at guard though) so I don't consider them to be better depth than Bates at this point.

 

I agree they did a lot on the line this year.  Im just not as sold on the overall strategy as the media is.  Long term they did little to address the concerns in the positional grouping (only Niang, Thuney, Humphrey, Allegretti, +2 others under contract for 2022).  Since the Mahomes money will start hitting the cap next yaer, they might have trouble repeating what they did this year.  Brown would be great to re-sign but spotrac has them only with 6.3 million dollars in cap for 2022 so they will be hard pressed to run the same plan back.  

 

On what I would have done.  I would not have traded for Brown.  Thats a sugar high to me.  I would have used that asset to draft Teven Jenkins, Landon Dickerson, or Liam Eichenberg (less sold on him); I will admit I do get some benefit of hindsight here.  Still draft Humphries for interior and then probably not draft DE at the end of round 4 but draft another developmental tackle like Tommy Doyle.  So I would not have drafted a LB and a DE and gotten a cost controlled starting tackle for a couple years in Jenkins and a developmental Tackle while securing the positional group long term.  I am also not as sure I would have paid Thuney.  I would have tried to get 90% of him at 50% the cost.  Impossible to say what UFA were available to them but I wouldve used that money on multiple opportunities (thinking Zeitler, Lamp, Lane Taylor, or Trai Turner) at filling that hole for cheaper.  This would let me be able to spend next year if there is a UFA that I like.

 

They are gonna start paying Mahomes a lot of money.  The OL play could derail their whole plan if its poor and he gets hurt (he tries to keep plays a live like Josh).  Moves like Brown and Thuney to some degree seem like they havent realized that Mahomes contract (while fair) needs to be worked around in the future.  They will be hard pressed to bring in UFAs for a year to sort out their OL next year.  

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KC will probalby have some early issues becasue of continuity....but let's look a little further at this.

 

LT Brown

LG Thuney

C Humphrey

RG (up for grabs)

RT also a competition but Niang is who you really prefer to win this job.

 

I will assume you end up with this

 

LT Brown

LG Thuney

C Huphrey

RG Long

RT Niang

 

That group is probalby quite a bit stronger, espcially at G-C-G than what they've been rolling out the past 2 seasons. 

For depth that leaves you with Remmers as swing tackle, Austin Blythe as backup C and G.  and then you have Trey Smith being groomed to be your future starting RG...Long can kick out to LT or RT also if needed....and you could then keep LDT, Wylie, or Allegrhetti.  Of those 3 Wylie has experience at G and RT.

 

It's deeper and better overall. 

 

I do think with a rookie center, and all new guys....gelling is going to be an issue at first.  Like half the season maybe...but it is a more talented group....and it is a much deeper group. 

 

BEST CASE:  Brown is great, Thuney is great.  Humphey wins the C job and gets acclimated quickly.  Smith suprises and wins the RG job right away.  Niang wins the RT job and looks good.  Would give you Long, Remmers, Wylie and Blythe as depth pieces...allows you to part ways with expensive LDT.

 

Worst Case.  Brown struggles to be the LT/pass protector you hoped for when you traded for him

Humphrey can't win the C job and Blythe offers JAG level Center play.

Long is a shell of his former self and Smith isn't ready...so LDT or Wylie at RG

Niang can't beat out Remmers at RT.

 

The group can't gel.  It's entirely possible.

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On 5/24/2021 at 12:54 PM, YattaOkasan said:

On what I would have done.  I would not have traded for Brown.  Thats a sugar high to me.  I would have used that asset to draft Teven Jenkins, Landon Dickerson, or Liam Eichenberg (less sold on him); I will admit I do get some benefit of hindsight here.  Still draft Humphries for interior and then probably not draft DE at the end of round 4 but draft another developmental tackle like Tommy Doyle.  So I would not have drafted a LB and a DE and gotten a cost controlled starting tackle for a couple years in Jenkins and a developmental Tackle while securing the positional group long term.  I am also not as sure I would have paid Thuney.  I would have tried to get 90% of him at 50% the cost.  Impossible to say what UFA were available to them but I wouldve used that money on multiple opportunities (thinking Zeitler, Lamp, Lane Taylor, or Trai Turner) at filling that hole for cheaper.  This would let me be able to spend next year if there is a UFA that I like.

  

 

Of the three draft options you gave Eich who you were less keen on is the only one I'd have considered at #31. Jenkins is a right tackle and you don't draft them in round 1. I said all spring he won't go round 1 and to absolutely zero surprise.... he didn't. Dickerson fully healthy, maybe, but I am not massive fan of centers in the 1st either and he was an injury question mark, so pass on that. 

 

Brown will be back in KC in 2022. Hitchens is an easy cut that saves them money (they just drafted his successor) and then they are only a year away from getting out from under Clark's contract in the year the cap should jump too. Unless he bombs (he won't) he is their left tackle for a long time. 

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3 hours ago, GunnerBill said:

 

Of the three draft options you gave Eich who you were less keen on is the only one I'd have considered at #31. Jenkins is a right tackle and you don't draft them in round 1. I said all spring he won't go round 1 and to absolutely zero surprise.... he didn't. Dickerson fully healthy, maybe, but I am not massive fan of centers in the 1st either and he was an injury question mark, so pass on that. 

 

Brown will be back in KC in 2022. Hitchens is an easy cut that saves them money (they just drafted his successor) and then they are only a year away from getting out from under Clark's contract in the year the cap should jump too. Unless he bombs (he won't) he is their left tackle for a long time. 

There were a ton of talented linemen available late in the first, but they all had the same seemingly fatal flaw that would prevent them from being LTs.  Their arms were all well shorter than you want for the position.  The difference between Jenkins (33.5) and Brown (35) doesn’t seem like much, but it’s often the difference between being the guy getting pushed and being the one doing the pushing.

 

This will be the most talented line Reid has had in Kansas City by a mile, particularly the interior.  Tampa’s still going to be tough to deal with, but the Chiefs will be starting 5 new linemen in week 1 so I don’t know how anyone can say they didn’t do enough to address the issue.

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On 5/20/2021 at 4:42 PM, BuffaloBill said:

The Bills D line play needs to improve - this is the bottom line 

That’s all that came to my mind when reading Op 

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On 5/21/2021 at 10:56 AM, Big Turk said:

 

Analytics showed that Offensive Line continuity was more important than upgrading the line in overall performance in a long study that was done spanning something like 20 years. I remember reading it in my Pro Football Prospectus 2007 edition.  Granted that is a while ago, but the basic premise remains...

 

The O-Line is effectively only as strong as a whole as their weakest link in that if one guy blows an assignment the QB is under immediate pressure no matter how well the other 4 do their job.  It also is key to understand how the guy next to you picks up blocks and how he gives help on blocks when called for.  Basically, there is a lot of places for errors to occur from missing an assignment, not knowing who you are supposed to block, being confused by the defensive alignment or not knowing how to properly block when receiving help that can ONLY be gained from live reps during game situations.  The more reps you have the more you "gel" as a unit.  This is why typically new units are not that great early in the year but tend to get better and better as the year goes on, and even better when held together for multiple years.

 

Good post.  I would add that pass blocking is not just the 5 OL guys.  It could be TE(s) and RB(s) plus the QB knowing what his

bailout moves need to be.  Talent is critical but teams that play together longer have an advantage in improving.  Having depth players to fill

in when needed without upsetting the play is also very important.

 

This whole dance also changes every week against different opponents.  To start the season I feel the Bills have an advantage over

the Chief when it comes to pass blocking.  I'm hopeful they can make strides in run blocking this year too.

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On 5/24/2021 at 6:55 PM, Zerovoltz said:

KC will probalby have some early issues becasue of continuity....but let's look a little further at this.

 

LT Brown

LG Thuney

C Humphrey

RG (up for grabs)

RT also a competition but Niang is who you really prefer to win this job.

 

I will assume you end up with this

 

LT Brown

LG Thuney

C Huphrey

RG Long

RT Niang

 

That group is probalby quite a bit stronger, espcially at G-C-G than what they've been rolling out the past 2 seasons. 

For depth that leaves you with Remmers as swing tackle, Austin Blythe as backup C and G.  and then you have Trey Smith being groomed to be your future starting RG...Long can kick out to LT or RT also if needed....and you could then keep LDT, Wylie, or Allegrhetti.  Of those 3 Wylie has experience at G and RT.

 

It's deeper and better overall. 

 

I do think with a rookie center, and all new guys....gelling is going to be an issue at first.  Like half the season maybe...but it is a more talented group....and it is a much deeper group. 

 

BEST CASE:  Brown is great, Thuney is great.  Humphey wins the C job and gets acclimated quickly.  Smith suprises and wins the RG job right away.  Niang wins the RT job and looks good.  Would give you Long, Remmers, Wylie and Blythe as depth pieces...allows you to part ways with expensive LDT.

 

Worst Case.  Brown struggles to be the LT/pass protector you hoped for when you traded for him

Humphrey can't win the C job and Blythe offers JAG level Center play.

Long is a shell of his former self and Smith isn't ready...so LDT or Wylie at RG

Niang can't beat out Remmers at RT.

 

The group can't gel.  It's entirely possible.

Thanks was interested in your insight.  Depth and long term investment will also be interesting for y’all although I think Gunner explained how it can work. 

On 5/25/2021 at 5:56 PM, GunnerBill said:

 

Of the three draft options you gave Eich who you were less keen on is the only one I'd have considered at #31. Jenkins is a right tackle and you don't draft them in round 1. I said all spring he won't go round 1 and to absolutely zero surprise.... he didn't. Dickerson fully healthy, maybe, but I am not massive fan of centers in the 1st either and he was an injury question mark, so pass on that. 

 

Brown will be back in KC in 2022. Hitchens is an easy cut that saves them money (they just drafted his successor) and then they are only a year away from getting out from under Clark's contract in the year the cap should jump too. Unless he bombs (he won't) he is their left tackle for a long time. 

Appreciate the perspective particularly about hitches contract.  I definitely don’t know enough to try and say they should’ve done what I did(was not in the OP). Rather was responding to prodding of what would o have done and that’s what popped in after a bit of looking.  
 

I think their cap situation is interesting though. By trading for brown they are not necessarily looking for cheap talent. I do not want the Bills trading away a first after this season to plug a hole. We need cheap labor and I think chiefs are in a similar position. The brown move is not cheap labor (although he is very talented) at a premium position.  

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1 hour ago, YattaOkasan said:

 

I think their cap situation is interesting though. By trading for brown they are not necessarily looking for cheap talent. I do not want the Bills trading away a first after this season to plug a hole. We need cheap labor and I think chiefs are in a similar position. The brown move is not cheap labor (although he is very talented) at a premium position.  

 

So I agree with the cheap labour point to an extent. But they have a key premium position unfilled. That should always come first IMO. The same as I was 100% behind the Bills trading for Diggs, I totally agree with the Chiefs trading for Brown. It still amazes me he slipped out of round 1 because he tested badly in the underwear olympics. 

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