Atlanta Falcons guard Jalen Mayfield was graded as the worst pass blocker in the NFL by Pro Football Focus in 2021. PFF gave him a grade of 27.6 and credited him (or blamed) with 11 sacks allowed and nine penalties.
Mayfield was drafted to provide competition at right tackle to Kaleb McGary, but it was apparent early on that tackle was not in his future.
He started 16 games at guard for the Falcons after only starting 14 games for the Michigan Wolverines before he was drafted.
The Falcons were expected to get better at left guard in 2022 simply because it would be almost impossible to get worse.
Either Mayfield improves, he just turned 22-years old in May, or the Falcons would find someone to replace him.
Atlanta drafted former Georgia Bulldog Justin Shaffer in the sixth-round, but it’s been Elijah Wilkinson getting the first-team snaps at practice so far.
Wilkinson has been in the NFL for five years and has played guard and tackle. He spent four years with the Denver Broncos before spending last season with the New York Giants, mostly as a reserve.
As for Mayfield, he doesn’t appear to be getting any closer to winning back his starting position if this rep against undrafted free agent Derrick Tangelo is any indication.
It’s still way too early to give up on Mayfield, and another year of experience will do him well. But if the Falcons are going to fix their biggest hole on offense, it looks like it’s going to be in the form of Wilkinson.