• Philadelphia is home to the NFL's top OT duo: Lane Johnson comes in at No. 2 in these rankings, while Jordan Mailata finds himself at No. 6.
• Three elite years in San Francisco for Trent Williams: The best tackle in the NFL has earned 90.0-plus overall grades in each of his seasons with the 49ers.
• Christian Darrisaw, Andrew Thomas crack the top five: The two are spearheading the new wave of young talent at offensive tackle.
Estimated Reading Time: 10 mins
It’s ranking season in the football world, and today we are looking at the top 32 starting offensive tackles in the NFL heading into the 2023 season.
We didn’t consider any rookies, given that not even all of the first-round picks are guaranteed to start, with some potentially seeing time at guard to begin their careers. So, every player on this list has at least one year of experience in the NFL.
Williams has been with the 49ers for three seasons now and has finished all three with the highest PFF grade among offensive tackles. From 526 pass-blocking snaps in the regular season and playoffs last season, he allowed 19 total pressures, just three of which were hits or sacks.
Johnson dealt with injuries throughout the 2022 season but still put together his best season in pass protection since entering the NFL. His 90.1 PFF pass-blocking grade trailed only Laremy Tunsil at the position, with Johnson not allowing a single sack or hit through the regular season and playoffs.
The best pass-protecting tackle in football a year ago, Tunsil had an incredible 2022 season. On the field for 676 pass-blocking snaps over the course of the regular season, he allowed just one sack, three hits and 13 hurries.
A rough rookie season has long since been forgotten about, with Thomas growing into a top-five NFL tackle in his third season in the league. We’ve seen him improve every season, both as a run blocker and a pass blocker, ranking seventh at the position with an 81.0 PFF run-blocking grade and third with an 89.9 PFF pass-blocking grade last year.
The 23rd selection in the 2021 NFL Draft, Darrisaw impressed as a rookie before taking a big step forward in 2022. Just two players at the position bettered the 90.6 PFF run-blocking grade produced by the former Virginia Tech standout, and while he still needs to improve his consistency in pass protection, his 82.4 PFF pass-blocking grade in 2022 was the eighth-best mark at the position.
Mailata’s rise from the NFL’s International Player Pathway program, having never played college football to becoming one of the best tackles in football, has been incredible. Drafted in the seventh round of the 2018 NFL Draft, he didn’t see a snap in his first two seasons in the league but has produced PFF grades of 81.0 or better in each of the past two years, forming the best tackle duo in the league with Lane Johnson.
One of the most natural pass protectors in the game, Wirfs has produced PFF pass-blocking grades of 82.0 or better in each of his three NFL seasons. It’s true that he was aided by Tom Brady’s quick release over the span, but allowing just six total pressures from 696 pass-blocking snaps in 2022 is still an incredible feat.
Miller was viewed as a bit of a project as the 15th pick in the 2018 NFL Draft. But after a rough rookie season, he showed substantial growth between then and 2021. He has produced PFF pass-blocking grades of 81.0 or better in each of the past three seasons and was the 12th-highest-graded run blocker at the position last year, too.
The 13th selection of the 2021 NFL Draft, Slater impressed immediately as a rookie, finishing 2021 with 80.0-plus grades both in pass protection and as a run blocker. He seemed on his way to an even better year in 2022, but a Week 3 biceps injury that required surgery cost him the rest of his campaign. Based on what we’ve seen from him so far, though, there’s little reason to doubt his credentials as a top-10 tackle in 2023.
There’s a little bit of projection in putting Sewell ahead of at least the next right tackle on this list, but it’s a projection I feel good enough about, given what we saw from him both in college and through two NFL seasons. His 83.0 PFF run-blocking grade last season ranked fourth in the league at the position. He also improved in pass protection, allowing seven fewer pressures on 19 more pass-blocking snaps than the year before.
We’ve probably already seen the peak of Ramczyk’s career, but the 29-year-old's floor is still likely a top-five right tackle in 2023. Across six NFL seasons, his PFF pass-blocking and run-blocking grades have yet to drop below 70.0.
On his best day, Stanley is one of the most natural pass protectors in football, allowing just 10 total pressures on 543 pass-blocking snaps back in 2019. It’s been a long road back from injury for the former sixth overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft. He missed the bulk of the 2020 and 2021 seasons, but he looked close to being back to his best after returning to the field in Week 5 last season.
Health is the only thing keeping Bakhtiari out of the top 10, and likely the top five, here. When he is healthy, you’ll struggle to find a better pass-protecting left tackle. He allowed just 10 pressures from 339 pass-blocking snaps in 2022.
Brown has developed into a high-floor NFL player, with his PFF grade sitting between 73.0 and 78.0 in each of the past four seasons. Five seasons into his NFL career, it’s fair to wonder if he’ll ever be a top-10 tackle. But at the very worst, he is a more-than-capable starting player on the left side.
In five seasons with the Colts, Smith has produced PFF pass-blocking grades of 68.0 or better every season, while his PFF run-blocking grade hasn’t dipped below 75.0 in each of the past four seasons. With the development of Bernhard Raimann on the left side, the Colts quietly have one of the best tackle duos in the NFL.
The 62nd selection in the 2018 NFL Draft, O’Neill has developed into one of the best right tackles in football, coming off a career-high 82.7 PFF grade in 2022 that ranked eighth among all tackles. Even if that’s his peak, his floor is a player who hasn’t graded below 70.0 in each of the past four seasons, logging more than 1,000 snaps in each of those years, too.
Armstead doesn’t have a 1,000-snap season to his name since entering the league as a third-round pick back in 2013, with injuries impacting him throughout his career. However, when he is on the field, he’s one of the best pass-protecting tackles. He has produced PFF pass-blocking grades of 80.0 or better in each of the past eight seasons.
Matthews is dependable, and while he hasn’t been enough of a mauler in the run game to push beyond that, a lot of teams would love to have a player like him manning the left side of their offensive line. His PFF pass-blocking grade hasn’t dipped lower than 77.0 since his rookie season back in 2014.
Decker missed the first half of the 2021 season but delivered in pass protection as soon as he got back on the field, finishing the year with an 84.0 PFF pass-blocking grade. His 76.5 grade in that category in 2022 didn’t quite reach those heights, but in seven NFL seasons he has yet to finish with a pass-blocking grade below 73.0.
While the down-to-down consistency isn’t always there with Moses, he was a dependable pass blocker for the Ravens over the course of the 2022 season and had some huge games as a run blocker, including three outings with a 90.0-plus PFF run-blocking grade.
2023 will be a big season for McGlinchey, who didn't look quite as good over the past two seasons as he did in his first three with the San Francisco 49ers. Even considering that, he has yet to finish any of his five NFL seasons with a PFF grade lower than 69.0.
If Smith can get back to his best, and we saw him get close to that in 2021, then this is far too low of a ranking. His six starts at right tackle to end the 2022 season weren’t great, though, with Smith allowing 16 total pressures from 239 pass-blocking snaps.
Bolles’ 90.6 PFF grade in 2020 seems like an outlier at this point. But if he is healthy for the 2023 season, then he’s still a top-25 tackle in the NFL. He has produced a PFF grade of 72.0 or better in all six of his seasons and was able to get his penalty count more under control in 2020 and 2021 after a difficult first three seasons in the NFL in that regard.
Taylor’s grading profile is one of the most interesting at the position. He earned a 75.9 PFF pass-blocking grade in 2022 that tied for 30th and a 39.7 PFF run-blocking grade that was the worst among starting offensive tackles.
With an 86.6 PFF grade in 2022, McGary was the fourth-highest-graded tackle in the NFL. However, the split between his run blocking (91.6, second) and pass blocking (66.9, 49th) adds some context as to why he isn’t higher on this list. He has improved as a run blocker every season he has been in the league and remains in a run-heavy system with the Falcons, so he should have a solid year in 2023. Just don’t expect a Lane Johnson level of pass blocking from him.
A fifth-round draft pick out of Southern Utah in the 2022 NFL Draft, Jones came on strong in the second half of the season. He allowed 40 total pressures as a rookie but only 12 in the final eight games of the season.
A dependable pass blocker on the right side of the Panthers' offensive line, Moton has produced 77.0-plus PFF pass-blocking grades in all five seasons he has been a full-time NFL starter.
After a rough first start in Week 5, Raimann came on strong in the second half of the 2022 season. From Week 10 onward, he had just one game with a PFF pass-blocking grade below 70.0.
Steele, an undrafted free agent in 2020, has really grown as a run blocker over the past three seasons and is coming off a career-high 82.1 PFF run-blocking grade that ranked sixth among all offensive tackles. He is limited as a pass protector but has developed into a starting-caliber player all the same.
Leno is not dominant as a run blocker but is more than capable in pass protection. His 80.9 PFF pass-blocking grade in 2022 tied for the 12th-best mark at the position, and he now has seven straight years with a PFF pass-blocking grade of 70.0 or better.
Dawkins has never really developed into a top-class run blocker, but the former second-round pick has never earned a season-long PFF pass-blocking grade lower than 76.0 across his six years in the NFL.
Eluemunor took a big step forward last season in his first full year as a starter. A fifth-round pick back in 2017, he produced 75.0-plus PFF pass-blocking and run-blocking grades in 2022. He allowed 26 total pressures over the course of the season but surrendered just seven across the final six games of the year.