What a difference a year makes for the offensive line. Yesterday was a great performance for everyone on the line, especially Austin Howard. He owned the highly paid and highly touted Mario Williams who figured to be the center piece of the Buffalo Bill defense this year. Howard deserves all the credit but everyone on the line played at a high level. Couple of interesting stats to consider courtesy of NFL.com:
- In 2011, the O-line allowed 40 sacks for an average of 2.5 per game
- In 2011, the O-line allowed 70 QB hits for an average of 4+ per game
- Yesterday, the line pitched a shut out in both categories
Clearly the pressure and the abuse got to Sanchez last year. There were times when the hits really rattled him. He appeared to be hurting often, and he never had time to throw. It was arguably the most pressure he had ever faced while playing football at any level. While it was only one game, we saw how powerful the throwing game can be for the Jets if Sanchez is given time to throw.
Yesterday's performance does raise a couple of questions:
1. How bad WAS Wayne Hunter?
2. How bad WERE Schotty & Callahan's blocking schemes?
Lets hope this unit keeps up the good work and remains healthy, because it appears this offense is capable of high caliber production if they can keep the QB pressure off the franchise QB.