Cordy Glenn is one of the best pass blocking tackles in the game
The Buffalo Bills were forced to place the Franchise Tag on starting left tackle Cordy Glenn on Tuesday. The team attempted to sign him long term but were unable to reach an agreement by the 4pm deadline. The tag means that Glenn will account for $13.706 million for 2016. The move buys the Bills some time to sign the talented former Georgia Bulldog.
Many fans have trouble with the thought of Glenn making top tier tackle money to the tune of 11-13 million dollars a year. According to Spotrac, Glenn’s value is around the $10.9 million dollars a year. But just because his average salary is in that $11 million dollar range, that doesn’t mean that’s what his cap hit will be. Teams have flexibility on how they structure the contract.
Check out top tackle contracts according to Overthecap.com
Take a look at Colts’ left tackle Anthony Castonzo’s (27 years old) contract. His contract is one of the more recent contracts and it will help determine Glenn’s value in my opinion.
Look at how Castonzo’s contract is configured:
Nate Solder (Age 27) also signed a new contract in 2015. His contract was more short term, but will give you an idea on Glenn’s yearly value.
When determining Cordy Glenn’s value you have to find where he falls on this list. Glenn will definitely command at least 20 million guaranteed. Teams tend to pro rate that out over the length of the contract for cap purposes. So signing Glenn to a 4-5 year contract would drop his cap hit considerably. Jim Overdorf and Cordy Glenn’s agent will look at the top tackles and compare their statistics.
So here are their career stats for the top 5 paid tackles in the league to see how Cordy stacks up.
As a pass blocker, Cordy Glenn is definitely one of the best. 2015 was no different, he only allowed 2 QB sacks which was the second best in the league for tackles that started 75% of their snaps according to Pro Football Focus (PFF). None of the tackles from the list above are ahead of him, Joe Thomas tied Glenn with 2 sacks surrendered. Glenn was second in least amount of sacks allowed, second in QB hits allowed and eighth in QB hurries allowed. Glenn exhibited in 2015 why he should be paid as a top tackle. Everyone knows this is a passing league and having a top notch pass blocker is a need for every team.
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Glenn’s white whale is New England’s Chander Jones. Jones uses his length really well versus Glenn. This play was no different. Look how Jones keeps Glenn’s hands off of him with a strong left stiff arm, then Jones throws Glenn’s left hand down to turn the corner.
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But Glenn is a very consistent pass blocker. A good kick-slide and pass blocking posture here versus a solid pass rusher in Richardson.
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The athletic left tackle isn’t known as a powerful run blocker but he is more than adequate. He uses his angles and strong hands to control defenders. Pro Football Focus graded him as the 26th best left tackle in the run game. That puts him behind every player on that top tackle list. Tyron Smith was ranked #1, Joe Thomas #4, Trent Williams #19, and Anthony Castonzo #22. How much of that was the new scheme? Not much, Glenn was ranked 22nd in run blocking in 2014, 9th in 2013, and 23rd in 2012. So I think it is safe to say his weakness is in the run game. But chew on this, according to PFF the Bills averaged 6.8 yards per carry when they ran off of Cordy Glenn. So he wasn’t a liability in the first ranked rushing offense.
Fans will say well that he isn’t a complete tackle. That def is debatable, but I believe that he is a good fit in Greg Roman’s offense. Glenn is athletic enough to pull and lead plays wide. He always has his head on a swivel and uses great angles to wall off defenders.
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Glenn excels in space. This is the kind of athletic ability you want to see in your left tackle. Don’t sleep on Kouandjo challenging for a starting position in 2016. This gap scheme fits him really well.
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Shady benefits from Glenn getting downfield to get a piece of the defender. These kind of plays don’t really show up in the stat box….
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Glenn is a natural fit in Roman’s complex run game. Here he blocks down and walls the defender off with smooth footwork.
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Glenn can get outside, some of his issues are when he is asked to reach block. Blocks that are quick hitters in tight space. The success of a reach block is solely based on quick footwork. A quick defender such as Leonard Williams makes a reach block even more difficult.
Glenn doesn’t fire out quick enough to reach the far shoulder. Williams defeats the block and the Jets’ 2015 first round pick makes the stop.
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The Bills offense improved in 2015 and a lot of that can be attributed to their rushing offense. Roman brought in his power run game and the players executed it very well. But did you know that only two starting offensive lineman were graded positively? Richie Incognito and Eric Wood are the only players to grade out well in the run game. So you could argue that paying Cordy Glenn as a top tackle isn’t the smartest move. But finding a consistent left tackle in this pass happy league isn’t easy. Glenn led in the Bills in that department, and the league for that matter. He has proven that he is a consistent pass blocker in the league. When you stack his stats up versus the top paid tackles, he deserves to be paid among the best.
I don’t think there is a tackle that is a comparable player in free agency or in the draft. The Bills know that and that is why they made the moves to free up cap space. They realize that 2016 is a critical year for the offensive side of the ball. They need to figure out if they have a Quarterback that they can move forward with. To do so they need continuity up-front to properly evaluate Tyrod Taylor. So locking Glenn up for at least 2016 was smart. Whether he is a player they should invest an enormous amount of money long term is still in the eye of the beholder. But it seems like the Bills believe that he is worth it and will try to lock him up long term. A move that could have an affect the Bills’ roster for many years.