If his 2011 season is any indication, Kansas City Chiefs could have a monster on their hands in Jon Asamoah.
As we go deeper into the absolute worst part of the offseason (June and the first three weeks of July are as bad as it gets) we will start taking a look at individual players on the Chiefs roster to evaluate their performance in 2011. We use the grades and stats recorded by our good friends at Pro Football Focus because we feel they give us the most accurate depiction on how a player is really performing on a snap by snap basis.
We’re starting with Asamoah. At first glance, his PFF numbers from last season weren’t that impressive. He recorded an +3.2 overall grade which is just above average. A close inspection of his work, however, paints a very interesting picture.
For starters, Asamoah almost never left the field. He played all but two of the team’s offensive snaps on the season at RG. His strength was clearly his pass protection. Despite having a rotation of mediocre and bad QB’s playing behind him, Asamoah blocked well for all of them. In fact, he got better as the year went on.
The second year player out of Illinois gave up two sacks and two QB hits on the season. He also gave up eight hurries but all eight of those hurries came in weeks one through nine. Asamoah did not give up a single hurry the rest of the season.
To put it another way, Asamoah hasn’t given up a QB hurry in 548 snaps.
On the season, Big Jon finished with a stellar +13.0 pass blocking grade. Only once on the season did he receive a negative grade in that area (-0.9 vs. MIA).
Where Asamoah struggled was in his run blocking. As good as he was protecting crappy QB’s, he was almost equally as bad blocking for crappy running backs. He received a -12.3 run blocking grade on the season, his worst game coming in the last contest of the season with a -3.2 mark against the Broncos. To be fair, that was just one week after his best run blocking game of the season against Oakland (+2.3).
Obviously Asamoah has to improve his run blocking, especially if the Chiefs plan to ram Jamaal Charles and Peyton Hillis down defense’s throats this fall. Still, it is important to remember that 2011 was Asamoah’s very first as a starter. The fact that he still graded above average and excelled in some areas is a great sign considering the total disaster that was the 2011 Chiefs offense.
In 2012, with more offensive weapons, stability at the QB position and a year over one-thousand snaps under his belt, Asamoah should take another step forward.
I predict a breakout season for Asamoah this season. Should the Chiefs run wild with Charles and Hillis, Big Jon might even get some Pro Bowl buzz.
What do you think Addicts? Is Jon Asamoah primed for a big year in 2012?