The Arizona Cardinals’ offensive line was bad in 2012, but it wasn’t all bad.
Overshadowed by the overall group’s poor performance was the rise of right tackle Bobby Massie.
A fourth-round pick out of Mississippi, Massie was thrust into a starting role Week 1 due to injuries suffered by Levi Brown and Jeremy Bridges. And while he struggled initially, the second half of his season was significantly better than the first.
According to ProFootballFocus.com, Massie gave up pressure on 14.5 percent of his pass-blocking snaps through the first seven weeks of the season. However, the reason Massie made the site’s “Secret Superstar” list is because of how he finished the campaign.
From Week 8 onward, he had just two games where he finished with an overall negative grade, and just one where he graded negatively as a pass blocker. Suddenly, the player who was allowing pressure on 14.5% of his pass blocking snaps was making pass protection look easy.
In those remaining nine games he allowed more than two total pressures in a single game just once, against the Chicago Bears in Week 16. And what about the 47 total pressures allowed over the first seven weeks? Just 14 from that point on – an incredible turnaround!
The site notes Massie could stand to improve his run-blocking, but believes “he’s fully capable of being considered one of the best right tackles in the league by this time next year,” even after the incredibly rough start to his professional career.
His improved level of play makes that seem so long ago, and the mere thought that the same player can be one of the best at his position might seem hard to believe, but that’s how impressive this Secret Superstar was late in the year, and we can’t wait to see how he progresses in 2013 and beyond.