The Seattle Seahawks offensive line has been a major inconsistency this season. The team has shuffled parts, with their biggest coming at the trade deadline, when they acquired Duane Brown. However, injuries have kept them from fielding what they hope to use moving forward.
The Seahawks are still struggling to figure out the right side of their line, but on Sunday they could have their “ideal” left side together for the first time. Left guard Luke Joeckel has been sidelined with a knee injury since the team acquired Brown. Joeckel is listed as questionable, but is expected to play this weekend next to Brown.
I chatted with Field Gulls editor Kenneth Arthur about the state of the Seahawks offensive line after ten weeks.
I believe that we'll see the Seahawks start Duane Brown at left tackle and Luke Joeckel at left guard together for the first time ever. Brown returned from an injury last week and Joeckel is a full participant in practice for the first time in over a month. Brown's been pretty good for Seattle so far and Joeckel should be no worse than a significant upgrade over Ethan Pocic -- a promising rookie who is not ready to start at left guard.
Justin Britt is a very good starting center. Germain Ifedi might be the worst right tackle in the NFL but I honestly don't know much about the other 31. I just know that Ifedi is heavily penalized and oft-beat. Whether it's Oday Aboushi, Pocic, or Mark Glowinski at right guard, that position is also weak.
So I'd say the line is 60 percent fairly good and 40 percent really bad and all you need is one weak link, but the Seahawks have two. It seems to be a much better pass blocking unit than run blocking unit at this point.
DeForest Buckner has consistently brought pressure against quarterbacks, but has been unable to close the deals with sacks. He ranks third in Pro Football Focus’ pass-rush productivity stat among defensive tackles. Back in Week 2, he was responsible for nine of the 49ers 28 QB pressures while facing Joeckel.
The 49ers will have considerable depth along their defensive line this week. They get Tank Carradine back, and Solomon Thomas could be back as well from his MCL sprain. They have also added defensive tackle Sheldon Day and edge rusher Cassius Marsh, and edge rusher Aaron Lynch and defensive tackle D.J. Jones are healthy once again. There will likely be some healthy scratches from this group, but the 49ers defensive front has a big opportunity in Week 12.