Usually when you see a player cash in on the free agent market despite a small sample size, it’s a backup quarterback. They can benefit greatly from seeing little time on the field and excelling in spot duty (see: Flynn, Matthew). But sometimes it works for other positions too. That appears to be the case with Menelik Watson.
The former second round tackle started just 17 games over four seasons in Oakland. Injuries had him miss most of his rookie season in 2013, all of the 2015 season, and he never played a full season. The result was this offseason when he became a free agent, he still was seen as having a great deal of potential and signed a lucrative long term deal with the Denver Broncos that pays him an average of over $6 million per season.
Thus far, things have not worked out well.
According to Pro Football Focus the starting right tackle has already given up 6 sacks in just two games in Denver.
Menelik Watson has already allowed 6 sacks. Only 12 OTs allowed more than that all of last season.— Sam Monson (@PFF_Sam) September 18, 2017
As Sam Monson notes, only 12 offensive tackle allowed more than six sacks all of 2016. That’s breathtaking. Especially if you’re Trevor Siemian.
Consider for comparison that the Raiders entire offensive line gave up just 8 sacks all last season. Seven of those sacks came from the right tackle spot where Watson started five games.
Seven sacks in a season from one position is a lot. Six in two games is insane. Good luck with that one, Denver.