Thanks to Pro Football Focus your suspicions have been verified today by math: The Redskins offensive line is, in fact, terrible at protecting the passer. More accurately: three-fifths of the line is terrible, and the other two-fifths is merely mediocre.
According to an advanced formula beyond my level of comprehension (seriously, look at this thing: “[Sack + Hit(0.75) + Pressure(0.75)]/Snaps Pass Blocking x 100 = Pass Blocking Productivity Rating”), PFF has come up with lists of the 10 best and worst pass protecting linemen in the league at each position. The formula, I’m told, takes into account the key aspects of protecting the QB by rating players based on how many sacks, hits and pressures they allow.
Here’s where the Skins rank:
Levi Jones: second-worst left tackle in the NFL
Derrick Dockery: somewhere in the middle; not top 10 or bottom 10
Casey Rabach: same as Dockery
Mike Williams: second-worst guard (includes right and left) in the NFL
Stephon Heyer: fifth-worst right tackle in the NFL
This tells us two things, conclusively: 1) There is no way anyone can say with confidence that Jason Campbell isn’t a good quarterback given the pass protection he receives; 2) We should probably draft some linemen to give Campbell protection in order to see how awesome (or awful) he really is.
Based on a quick survey of several mock drafts, about 20% of the players projected to be taken in the first two rounds are offensive lineman. The Skins should maybe consider drafting a couple of them. Just a thought. Or they could take a QB at No. 4 and put a rookie behind three of the worst pass-blocking linemen in the NFL.