TAMPA – We’re going to go out on a limb here and say that Buccaneers right tackle Demar Dotson never makes it to the Pro Bowl.
That’s not meant as a knock. After all, the way we see it, Dotson is as solid and steady as any starting right tackle in the NFL right now.
It’s just that, among his peers, he’s not seen as being among the elite. Shoot, we’re not even sure the Bucs consider him to be among the elite.
Just look at all the trouble he had to go through to get his current contract, which ranks 18th overall among NFL right tackles.
Of course, none of this means that Dotson can’t or doesn’t play at a Pro Bowl level because, for the most part this year, he has.
That at least is the assessment of the numbers crunchers at Pro Football Focus, where Dotson has been earning high marks all season long.
In particular, Dotson has shone as a pass protector, where he currently ranks as the league’s best at his position.
Per PFF, Dotson has allowed just three quarterback hurries in 210 pass-blocking snaps for a pass-blocking efficiency rating of 98.9.
That includes just one hurry allowed in 49 pass-blocking snaps against the Cardinals last week, when Dotson was fairly strong in the run game as well.
The Bucs didn’t run the ball effectively at all against the Cardinals, their runners gaining just 58 yards on 18 carries (3.2 yards per carry).
Doug Martin accounted for most of those yards, 53, on 14 carries, but he was at his best running to the right and behind Dotson.
That’s where Martin gained most of his yards, according to PFF, including the 27 yards he gained on his longest carry.
Dotson has seldom been recognized as being the Bucs best offensive lineman, but right now he just may hold that title.