1. New York Jets
Projected Starter: Damien Woody
The Jets’ offensive line is thought to be one of the best in the business, and starting right tackle Damien Woody does his fair share to help them earn that reputation. That reputation has a lot to do with the Jets producing the league’s best ground game a year ago, but Woody is the complete package. Not only is he a more than adequate run blocker, but his pass protection is probably second to only Jake Long in the division, and arguably worthy of top five status in the entire league. Woody allowed 3 sacks and 10 quarterback pressures in 09′, and was the only starting tackle in football to not give up a quarterback hit.
2. Miami Dolphins
Projected Starter: Vernon Carey
Lining up opposite Jake Long, one of the best lineman in football, Carey doesn’t get a whole lot of respect. Some of that is because he has struggled in pass protection at times over the years, but other than a few poor outings, he really hasn’t been a horrible pass blocker. In fact, I would even go as far as to say he has been borderline solid. At 340 pounds though, it’s Carey’s run blocking that really sets him apart, as he is considered to be one of the better run blocking tackles in the league. With all the shuffling the Dolphins have done on the interior of the line this offseason though, you have to wonder how short Carey’s leash is. An injury, or continued struggles protecting Henne, and the front office may explore replacing Carey with a less expensive alternative next offseason.
3. New England Patriots
Projected Starter: Nick Kaczur
Kaczur certainly isn’t one of the NFL’s top tier tackles, as he is only average, if not mediocre, in both pass protection and run blocking, but he is one of the more disciplined lineman in the league. After all, Kaczur didn’t commit one penalty in nearly 1,000 snaps last season.
4. Buffalo Bills
Projected Starter: Cornell Green
The soon to be 34 Cornell Green, has been a journeyman for most of his NFL career. Buffalo will be Green’s eighth team, after agreeing to terms this offseason. Green is definitely not a long-term answer to the Bills’ offensive line deficiencies, but he could be a decent stop-gap solution, until they find their right tackle for the future. Green is moderate upgrade in both the pass and run blocking departments, but he was one of the more penalized tackles in the league last year.