No. 3: Rashawn Slater will allow fewer than 5 sacks
The Bolts are fully intending for Rashawn Slater to be a lockdown pass blocker on the left side of their offensive line, and Slater’s pedigree at Northwestern suggests he’ll be just that.
Slater’s tape has to go back to 2019, as the pandemic-delayed 2020 campaign ultimately convinced him to opt out of last year in preparation for the 2021 NFL Draft, which is fine. And either way, if you’re looking back to his 2019 campaign, it was notably impressive.
According to Pro Football Focus, Slater didn’t surrender a single sack and gave up a mere five quarterback pressures on 355 passing snaps:
Rashawn Slater pass-blocking in 2019:
? 355 snaps
? 5 QB pressures
? 0 sacks allowed pic.twitter.com/a3UG0nBwPk
— PFF College (@PFF_College) January 22, 2021
It’ll be much more difficult to reach these levels within the NFL, of course, and a rookie transition to the pros is never easy.
That said, assuming Slater keeps his sacks allowed to under five isn’t too bold of a prediction. Even perennial Pro Bowl left tackle Trent Williams of the San Francisco 49ers was credited with four sacks allowed last year, so it’s not out of line to think Slater could wind up having similar success.
Especially with the confidence Justin Herbert will develop in him.
Look for Slater to continue his dominant pass-blocking ways right out of the gate, which should prompt him towards some lofty accolades for a rookie.