The Buffalo Bills added offensive tackle Bobby Hart to the team, much to the dismay of fans. I know, I know. He’s not a former Carolina Panthers player. If it’s any consolation he’s at least coming from a franchise named after a large cat. The general buzz has not been positive but let’s take a look.
Before I had a chance to fire up the ol’ laptop I had already seen a pretty bad play from Bobby Hart making the rounds on social media. Sadly, many were running with it as if it told the whole story. If this play was the only one you looked at it’d be a wildly different picture.
For every player it’s absurdly easy to cherry pick plays to suit a narrative and, being candid, it bothered me a bit that so many were quick to jump on Hart. On both these first plays there’s no doubt he was successful against a pretty tough defensive front.
I mean, %$!&! There he is pushing T.J. Watt out of the picture. Getting to actual analysis, on Play 1, great hand placement and solid technique lead to a victory. On Play 2 I like his tenacity and knowing what he can and can’t get away with grabbing. For this play he keeps loose enough to turn with Watt and keep his part of the pocket intact.
And on this one he starts off looking like he’s running the play “as is.” There’s a problem quickly developing and Hart recognizes it, adjusts to the situation and helps buy his quarterback some time.
There are some things to like about Hart, but he’s not a human highlight reel. In fact, you’ll definitely find enough negative plays to create a lowlight reel if you’re so inclined. One issue that does creep up periodically is his overall lack of push and on occasion, like we see here, the opposite of push. He’s too high in his stance and the angle of attack is one he doesn’t seem prepared for either. Footwork and stance lapses seemed to be the culprit most of the time.
Here’s a similar issue with the angle causing a problem for Hart. He doesn’t maintain the block and the result is apparent.
I don’t like to end on bad notes so here he is using a single leg takedown to put Watt on the ground. This play probably sold him for head coach Sean McDermott.
If I wanted to I could show you highlight after highlight and tell you he’ll be competing with Darryl Williams for the right tackle spot. But I don’t want to do that because I don’t believe that’s true. I did set out to be fair to Bobby Hart though. This is a depth signing and everyone knows it.
And Bobby Hart is a typical depth signing who carries low risk for a team with established starters locked up. You’d rather he doesn’t end up starting but that’s essentially the deal whether it’s Hart or someone else.