The folks at profootballfocus.com, who are sort of like the Sabremetrics set for football fans, have been grading players by position, for the last three seasons.
Over the weekend they posted the players they have graded out as the 10 best offensive guards for the 2008-10 seasons and Logan Mankins is at the top of the list.
Here’s what PFF wrote about the Pats’ left guard:
1. Logan Mankins, New England Patriots
Even missing half of the 2010 season couldn’t keep Mankins from finishing our top guard over three years. He may give up some penalties and allow some pressure, but Mankins is the most dominant guard in the run game. Able to drive defenders back and get to the next level, you’ll understand why the Patriots took the unusual step of franchising a guard to secure his services for another year.
The Saints’ Jhari Evans, currently the highest-paid guard in the NFL, is ranked third, behind teammate Carl Nicks.
On Friday, PFF posted their three-year grades for left and right tackles and Matt Light came in fourth. The Browns’ Joe Thomas was tops.
4. Matt Light, New England Patriots
He’s not the player he once was where in 2008 he finished the year our top-ranked left tackle, but he’s still an above average player. Can’t quite handle the top rushers anymore, but is an aggressive run blocker who still has something to offer. Last two years have been relatively so-so, but in a league lacking in superior left tackles, that’s not necessarily been a bad thing for the Patriots.
Given the way they rank two of the Patriots’ offensive linemen, it isn’t much of a surprise that in their ranking of lines as a whole for the 2010 season, PFF slots New England’s heavies third, behind the Jets and Texans. There, Mankins’ play as a run-blocker is again praised, but Sebastian Vollmer is called a question mark. He was “superb” as a rookie, where he played mostly at left tackle, but took a step back at right tackle according to PFF’s evaluation.