Last Tuesday, the Carolina Panthers released starting left guard Calvin Throckmorton, giving way to rookie Chandler Zavala. Unfortunately, he’d eventually respond by giving the Dallas Cowboys a way to quarterback Bryce Young.
Zavala, per Pro Football Focus, was responsible for three of the seven sacks absorbed by Young in Sunday’s 33-10 loss to the visiting Cowboys. On Monday, head coach Frank Reich was asked if he had considered implementing a rotation at the position.
“I always talk with Campy [James Campen] beforehand like, ‘Hey, here’s the general plan.’ And we had talked about a possible rotation,” he replied. “There was, at one point, where we were gonna make a rotation then it got later in the game and in the fourth quarter. And so, in-game like that, I just kinda leave it up to the position coaches.
“We talk beforehand, spell it out clearly what we’re lookin’ for. ‘Cause they have a feel, they’re with the guys on the side, they kinda know. And a lot of times, for example, one of the guys will come up and say, ‘Hey, I’m gonna make this switch.’ And I’ll give ’em the thumbs up. That’s always kind of a week-to-week thing.”
Reich was then asked if Zavala would be getting the start against the Tennessee Titans in Week 12.
“We haven’t talked about that yet,” he responded.
The fourth-round pick has now allowed the eighth-most pressures (32) in the entire NFL despite having played in just six games. He’s also earned an almost non-existent 7.2 pass-blocking grade from PFF, by far the lowest amongst all offensive linemen who have appeared in at least five outings.
Second-year guard Cade Mays would, presumably, be the choice if Zavala does not get the nod.
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Author: Anthony Rizzuti