The Patriots offensive line has been in the midst of a game of musical chairs as of late. Between David Andrews’ concussion and Cole Strange splitting time with Isaiah Wynn at left guard, the group has been nothing but consistent this season.
One staple, however, has been at left tackle, which was a question mark headed into the season.
Throughout his career, Trent Brown has had a number of durability issues. He missed five games in 2019, 11 in 2020, and eight for New England last year. The struggles staying on the field resulted in a significant portion of his two-year contract he signed with the Patriots last offseason being tied to playtime incentives.
But through nine weeks this season, Brown has not missed a snap and has already eclipsed last season’s snap total. The tackle credits it to some simple luck, but also the work he put in over the offseason.
“I did focus on lifting and diet more this offseason just so I could be available and healthy to play all 17 [games] and hopefully more,” Brown said via Zoom on Monday. “And then I also told myself I know my team needs me, but I’ve got to be out there for me, as well. I hate missing time because I know the type of impact I can have when I’m available. So I just try to make sure I’m available.”
The heavy workload has also come against some of the league’s best pass rushers as well. Entering Week 9, Pro Football Focus ranked Brown’s difficulty of assignment in pass protection as the highest among any offensive tackles in football. His performance was above expectations.
Weekly update of best offensive tackles in 2022.— Timo Riske (@PFF_Moo) November 2, 2022
At some point I have to remove Greg Little from this chart to make it more readable pic.twitter.com/UjEWqwXTzl
Brown’s entire performance on the field hasn't been perfect. Most recently against the Bears, he was tabbed for four penalties in the Monday night defeat. But, the 6-foot-8 tackle has been far from New England’s problems up front, and has provided them a reliable option to protect Mac Jones’ blindside.
“I got to be the player that my team needs me to be,” Brown said.