Labeled as a surprise first-round pick and a reach after analyst pegged him as a third-round prospect, Kalbe McGary proved the doubters wrong and the Atlanta Falcons right when he was taken with pick No. 31 in 2019.
The 6-foot-6, 306-pound product out of the University of Washington is a classic throwback to the prototypical right tackle that’s a mean mauler in the run game. And for a team like the Las Vegas Raiders that loves to run the football, McGary would be a diamond of a free agent addition.
While mammoth right tackle’s availability is still up in the air — the Falcons could apply the the franchise tag to McGary — if the 28 year old does hit the market as an unrestricted free agent, he’ll likely have suitors lined up for his services.
Tale of the Tape: Kaleb McGary
- Position: Right Tackle
- Year drafted: 2019, First Round, No. 31 overall
- Age: 28
- Height: 6-foot-6
- Weight: 306 pounds
- 2022 Stats: 1,051 snaps, 6 sacks allowed (tied for 15th according to Pro Football Focus), 5 penalties (tied for 47th according to PFF).
McGary earned the distinction as Pro Football Focus’ fourth overall tackle with an 86.6 overall grade and was the groups top-rated right tackle. Playing in all of the Falcons’ offensive snaps (1,051), McGary allowed six sacks and was charted for five penalties, according to PFF.
This past season was a standout year for the four-year veteran, especially when one considers Atlanta declined to exercise the fifth-year option this past spring. Just like Raiders running back Josh Jacobs, McGary put together an exemplary 2022 campaign that sets him up for a nice payday — with Atlanta or another team.
And Las Vegas should be one of them, considering the dedication McDaniels’ has to the ground attack.
McGary produced well in Arthur Smith’s run-first offense in Atlanta as the offensive tackle’s physical and brute-force style allowed him to engulf and smother defenders in the run game. That commitment to the run game also the Falcons to limit McGary’s exposure to the league’s top shelf pass rushers, as pass protection is where McGary is only average. That’s not to say McGary is terrible protecting the passer. He can still set an anchor and get to the junction point blocking for the quarterback, but not at the same level he wipes defenders out of plays when the team decides to run the ball.
While the AFC West boasts premium pass rushers, the addition of a tackle with a mean streak helps the Raiders attack those quarterback hunters with a domineering rushing attack.
Competition at every position is a good thing, too. Currently, Thayer Munford, Justin Herron, and Justin Murray are the right tackles on the Raiders minimalist offseason roster at this point. Jermaine Eluemunor, who started the majority of games at right tackle for Las Vegas in 2022, is himself an unrestricted free agent, as well.
Price-wise, McGary isn’t going to be a cheap add. With his experience and production, coupled with the fact having two quality bookends on the offensive line at left and right tackle is a premium in the league, McGary is going to likely field several offers. Spotrac notes McGary’s market value is at $17.745-plus million annually with a four-year, $70-million plus deal on the horizon.
But, for a Raiders team not only needing reinforcements to protect a new quarterback (veteran or rookie) but the need for a finishing-type right tackle to pave the way when running the ball, McGary fits the bill.