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NFL Draft

3 Teams That’d Be Devastated By Brandon Brooks-Sized OL Loss

  • The Draft Network
  • June 16, 2020
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The Philadelphia Eagles received some devastating news recently—that starting offensive guard Brandon Brooks has suffered an Achilles tendon injury and will not play this season. It’s a hard pill to swallow for any team; finding out that one of your best players on the line of scrimmage will miss the season. But if you’re looking for a silver lining as an Eagles fan, know that Philadelphia still has Lane Johnson and they still have Jason Kelce. Not having Brooks to serve as the meat of that sandwich will hurt, but having two other highly talented offensive linemen on the right side of the line will certainly ease the strain on Brooks’ replacement. 

Not every NFL team has that luxury. There are teams that can ill afford to take on the loss of a Pro Bowl lineman in 2020—mostly because their units are so much more defined by the presence of a single blocker. The Eagles will be hurt in not having Brooks, but they won’t be devastated. These teams, on the other hand, would be. 

Houston Texans & Laremy Tunsil

Any time a player costs two first-round picks, a second-round pick, and a contract with a $22 million annual average salary, odds are that’s a player you can ill afford to be without. The Texans have slowly deconstructed key bits of the roster, including losing wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins, but their offensive line is hoping stability provides key solutions for the team’s pass protection woes. A year after quarterback Deshaun Watson was sacked 62 times in 2018, the team drafted Tytus Howard and Max Scharping and traded for Tunsil. 

With Watson’s style of play, Tunsil working the blind side is essential. And while there’s some young promise on the roster, Tunsil is the glue. 

Los Angeles Chargers & Trai Turner

The Carolina Panthers trading five-time Pro Bowler Trai Turner was one of the first red flags that perhaps this team was “tanking” the season. Then, of course, we found out that the trade of Turner was actually bringing back Russell Okung in return, a confusing move but one that put the Chargers in position to finally fortify their interior offensive line. Turner is going to serve as a vital piece of the puzzle for the Chargers. 

Mike Pouncey is past his prime and missed double-digit games for the second time in four years. The team’s offensive tackle combo of Bryan Bulaga and Sam Tevi does not inspire, either. Left guard Dan Feeney has struggled to live up to his status as a folk-hero in draft circles with his fun college tape. 

Turner is a huge addition for the Chargers because he brings some viable play to the interior. But if he went down this season, look out. 

Green Bay Packers & David Bakhtiari

Envisioning life without Bakhtiari is not a pretty sight. Yes, the Packers are boosted by the promise of youngster Elgton Jenkins, but who plays left tackle in the absence of one of the best right tackles in all of football? The Packers’ next five best linemen are Jenkins, Lane Taylor, Corey Linsley (all of which are interior exclusive blockers), right tackle Ricky Wagner and former tackle Billy Turner. Finding the best group of five would be a challenge, especially since Rodgers has been sacked 85 times over the last two seasons—including 49 times with Bakhtiari logging an All-Pro season in 2018.

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