Garrett Bolles, Left Tackle
Bolles, the Broncos pick at 20 in the 2017 draft was thrust into the starting left tackle spot as a rookie. He responded with a pretty respectable showing.
That’s going to be an unpopular opinion. If you love Bolles-bashing, I suggest you hop in the car and tune your radio to 104.3. The Fan has all kinds of fun nicknames and critiques of the first-year pro.
Bolles problems were with concentration, discipline. He took too many holding (7) and false start (4) penalties. Those are corrections he should be able to make fairly easily.
He gave up 8.5 sacks. That is more concerning. Technique issues are far more difficult to correct, at this stage than mental mistakes, assuming the player is coachable. Having met Bolles once, I can confirm that he is as polite and respectful a man as you’ll find.
Bolles has come into organized team activities (OTA’s) stronger, bigger and with a commitment to improve on his rookie season.
For Denver, they need Bolles to do more than improve upon the ’17 performance, they need him to justify his first-round selection. He needs to excel. As much as any statistic, win or loss, the Broncos need to win the war of perception. They can not afford another season of nonsense at the QB position. Few aspects are more important to the health of a right-handed quarterback than his left tackle.
Denver needs Case Keenum to be the right move. Since Peyton Manning’s foot injury, the Broncos quarterback spot has become a comedy of errors. Keenum, like all quarterbacks that have won games in the NFL, sees his statistics improve drastically when he has time.
With minor adjustment, Bolles can give the Broncos two advantages: A safe blind-side for their quarterback and normal down-and-distance situations.
Improvement from Bolles ripples through the entire offense.