Description: Top level starter, absolute lock to both make the team and start. Won’t face any competition for his job.
Description: Quality starter who may have some minor struggles in a given year, but overall is a good football player. Should both easily make the team and start.
Montgomery has played at a pretty consistent level these last three seasons, and put together his best campaign in 2012. Once thought of as a journeyman back-up offensive lineman, Montgomery has showed himself to be a quality offensive lineman, and found a home in the zone blocking scheme. He’s a big part of the Redskins success, and needs to maintain this level for the Redskins to get back to the playoffs.
Description: Passable starter, can play the position and be okay, but won’t consistently play at a high level. Will be streaky throughout the season and over the course of many seasons. Depending on position would be better served as a good role player, or would be the best reserve player at a position. Should make the team, though not a lock and should face competition for a starting job.
Chester is kinda a tweener between tier 2 and tier 3, but given the lesser track record of success I went with a Tier 3 ranking. Last year, Chester was definitely on the Tier 2 level, but prior to that he was more of a Tier 3 or Tier 4 guy. Chester has played every snap each of this two years in Washington, and unlike many of their linemen has been pretty penalty free. His pass blocking has been his strength so far and he’s done a nice job protecting Redskin quarterbacks.
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Description: Replacement level starter. This is a guy who could start in a pinch or as a long-term injury replacement but will max out as an average starter, and will probably be below average. He’s a guy who could be okay as a short term filler, but over an extended period will struggle. Depending on position could be a solid player, or would be a good back-up. Has a decent chance to make the team, and could get a look at a starting job, but nothing is set in stone for him.
Lichtensteiger is a bit of a tweener as well. For the majority of his career he should be down in Tier 5, but he did look promising in the first 4 games of the 2011 season before his knee injury. While his play fell back down this past season, he gets a little benefit of the doubt since it typically is the 2nd year back from a knee injury that you can accurately see how a player has returned. One benefit of Lichtensteiger is his versatility since he can back-up at center, something no one else really has shown that they can do.
Description: Solid back-up caliber player. Shouldn’t really ever start, and would be below average in that capacity, but can be a short term injury replacement. Shouldn’t even be much of a role player depending on the position, their best value is in their reliability as a replacement. Depending on the position, should be capable of backing up multiple positions or roles to increase their value. Has a chance to make the team, but really shouldn’t be considered a starting option at all.
-Hurt was the Redskins 7th round pick in 2011, and due to injury got a number of starts at LG. He was ineffective in that role, but got a chance this past year at RT to replace an injured Tyler Polumbus for a week this past season. He was sound in that spot start, but he’s still likely more of a Tier 5 player than a Tier 4 guy. Having some versatility helps, but he will need to show that he can play better this preseason after an underwhelming year last season. He’s got a solid shot currently to make this team, but that is due to lack of competition more than anything else.
-LeRibeus was the Redskins 3rd round pick in 2012, but was considered a bit of a reach at the time he was drafted. Despite Kory Lichtensteiger missing all of the preseason due to injury rehab, LeRibeus was not able to lock down the back-up LG spot , as he battled Maurice Hurt throughout camp. LeRibeus was inactive for most games , but did get an opportunity late in the year when Lichtensteiger again went down with injury. Though the team initially tried him some at center, those plans were put on hold with Lichtensteiger’s injury issues last year, and it remains unclear if he could be a viable back-up in that role.
-Gettis was an intriguing sleeper pick when he was drafted in the 5th round. He had some nice potential, but it was pretty clear that he’d need a year to bulk up and develop. He got some opportunities in the preseason when Chester went down with injury and in fact he out played fellow rookie Josh LeRibeus. Gettis was inactive during season, but does still have some intriguing potential going forward. Adding versatility would be key for him as well.
Description: Replacement level player. Not considered at all for a starting role, and isn’t even considered a viable back-up. Really only has a shot to make the team if injuries thin out the competition. Overall has a poor chance to make a roster, and is a player who will likely be replaced during the season.
What do you think? How would you rank the Redskins offensive offensive interior linemen options? And should that prohibit them from acquiring anymore additional interior linemen options?