Football at its core is trench warfare. Protecting your quarterback is vital, and it doesn’t hurt to establish consistent running lanes for your ground attack. Who are the top offensive tackles heading into the 2021 NFL season at solidifying the line of scrimmage?
Top 25 offensive tackles in the NFL for the 2021 season | 25-16
Offensive linemen only get noticed when they make a mistake — let’s flip the script and appreciate these gigantic men for a change. Here are the top 25 offensive tackles for the 2021 NFL season.
25. Isaiah Wynn, New England Patriots
Isaiah Wynn is an interesting player. Coming out of Georgia, Wynn was clearly a great athlete and an accomplished player, but he was far from the prototype in terms of height and length for offensive tackles in the NFL. Many saw him as a guard, and he probably would excel at that position. But he has also been quite impressive at tackle and is still only 24 years old.
Wynn played just 641 snaps last year and has only appeared in 18 games as a pro. So, durability is an obvious concern. Wynn barely edged out both of the Bills’ starting tackles for the final spot on this list.
24. Taylor Lewan, Tennessee Titans
Taylor Lewan has been a fixture for Tennessee for some time now and fits exactly how they want to play on offense. However, he could only dress for five games last year and struggled when he was on the field. This is a bet that last year was an aberration for Lewan, though — not a sign of things to come. On the other hand, he does turn 30 years old in July.
23. Morgan Moses, Free Agent
After playing over 1,100 snaps for Washington last year, they parted ways with Morgan Moses (for financial reasons) after picking up Charles Leno and drafting Samuel Cosmi. Maybe by the time you read this, Moses will have found a new home, but one thing is for certain — he will be a starting right tackle somewhere in 2021. He is tough in the prototypical right tackle mold, and that still has a lot of value in this league.
22. Jake Matthews, Atlanta Falcons
With his amazing bloodlines and draft capital invested in him, Jake Matthews came into the league with significant expectations. While he has never become an elite offensive tackle, Matthews certainly hasn’t disappointed either. Pass protection is clearly Matthews’ forte, and he does leave you wanting more in the run game.
21. Taylor Decker, Detroit Lions
Most think of Taylor Decker as a nasty finisher, which his new coaching staff will love. Yet, he really performed well in protection last year, which is something Jared Goff will love. The Lions now have one heck of an offensive line to begin their franchise rebuild.
20. Braden Smith, Indianapolis Colts
Coming out of Auburn, most looked at Braden Smith as a guard at the next level. But even as a rookie, Smith stepped right in at right tackle for Indianapolis and performed quite well. Since then, Smith has been a rock of stability on one of the NFL’s best offensive lines.
19. Andrew Whitworth, Los Angeles Rams
Andrew Whitworth will turn 40 years old during this upcoming season and is far and away the oldest player listed here. But what an amazing career this guy has had for the Bengals and Rams as one of the top players at his position for going on 17 years. Whitworth did miss a chunk of time last year, however, which is concerning.
18. Mike McGlinchey, San Francisco 49ers
Mike McGlinchey is ideal for Kyle Shanahan’s run system. He moves well and does a great job blocking on the move and in space. In fact, few tackles in the league do it better. McGlinchey did have a tough season in pass protection, though (which is slightly less important in this 49ers’ offense).
17. Mekhi Becton, New York Jets
Mekhi Becton really stands out. He is just massive, and when you see him run, it is simply jaw-dropping. He has some technique work to do, but the sky is the limit for Becton. Rarely do you see guys just manhandling NFL defensive linemen, but Becton does it with some regularity. The left side of New York’s offensive line looks to be in good hands for years to come as Zach Wilson acclimates to the league.
16. Jack Conklin, Cleveland Browns
The Browns paid big money to pluck Jack Conklin out of Tennessee and plug him in as their starting right tackle. Conklin lived up to his big price tag in his first season in Cleveland, bringing a nastiness to their line. He fits the mentality of this team very well.