I think we've established how atrocious the New England Patriots offensive line performed in 2015. Almost every single player to suit up on the line was hurt for some extended period of time, and the team had to rely on a series of young, inexperienced, and hurt players to protect the best player in the NFL.
Tackles Sebastian Vollmer and Marcus Cannon were awful. Guard Shaq Mason was a rookie coming out of a triple option offense that rarely threw the ball, while Josh Kline and Tre Jackson battled serious injuries. Center Bryan Stork spent the AFC Championship game tipping the snap. There wasn't much hope.
According to Pro Football Focus, the Patriots offensive line ranked 31st in the league in pass protection, ahead of only the San Diego Chargers.
Luckily quarterback Tom Brady is the most transcendent player in the league.
QB rating when under pressure in 2015 (out of 37 QBs):— Jeff Deeney (@PFF_Jeff) May 14, 2016
1. Brady 96.6
2. Palmer 95.6
29. Gabbert 60.8
36. Kaepernick 43.7
According to Pro Football Focus, no quarterback had a better passer rating while under pressure than Patriots QB Tom Brady.
Keep in mind that Brady played the entire second half of the season without his top receiver Julian Edelman, and without his top running back Dion Lewis, and without a healthy offensive line. He also had to deal with an injured receiver corps of Rob Gronkowski, Danny Amendola, Brandon LaFell, and Scott Chandler.
The Patriots offensive line is going to be better in 2016. They have to be. Every player will be healthier, offensive line coach Dante Scarnecchia returns to kick the unit into gear, and players like Mason, Jackson, Stork, David Andrews, and Josh Kline have another year of experience under their belts.
If Brady is the best in the league while under pressure, then the sky is the limit for the offense next season when he has more time in the pocket.