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 Larry Warford 
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Post Larry Warford
I saw this article at PRO FOOTBALL FOCUS
Home » Teams » NFC North » Detroit Lions » Rookies In Focus: Larry Warford
Rookies In Focus: Larry Warford
Steve Palazzolo | April 18, 2014

With the rookie edge rushers and offensive tackles analyzed in depth, we’re moving to the interior of the offensive line. In recent years, we’ve seen more guards and centers drafted in the first round, with two guards going in the Top-10 a year ago in Jonathan Cooper and Chance Warmack. Unfortunately, Cooper never took a regular season snap after going down to injury during the preseason but Warmack, as well as fellow first round guard Kyle Long started every game for their respective teams.

We also saw the emergence of our Rookie of the Year, Larry Warford, who more than solidified one of the guard spots in Detroit. He clearly stood out as the best of the rookie interior linemen, all the more impressive considering the learning curve often associated with the position. Here’s a look at all of the rookie interior linemen.

This is by no means a definitive draft grade on any of these players, just a one-year look at their role and production, and perhaps a look forward to how they might improve.

Round 3, No. 65: Larry Warford, Detroit Lions

warfordRole: 16 Starts at RG

Despite three guards going in the Top 21, it took until pick 65 for another to come off the board and he proved to be the best of the bunch in Year 1. Warford’s +22.8 overall grade ranked fourth among all guards as he paired with fellow rookie LaAdrian Waddle to lock down the right side of the Lions’ offensive line.

It was an impressive effort for Warford who played every snap for the Lions while grading positively in 13 of 16 games. That consistency earned him our Rookie of the Year Award and a spot as the Second Team All Pro right guard for us as well.

Pass Blocking

Grade: +12.1
Pass Block Snaps: 693
Total Pressures: 15
Sacks: 0
Hits: 5
Hurries: 10
Pass Blocking Efficiency: 98.3

Allowing only 15 pressures on 693 pass block snaps is a good way to kick off a career. Warford’s 98.3 Pass Blocking Efficiency ranked third among guards and was by far the top mark among his fellow rookies. His only negative grade in pass protection came in Week 7 against the Cincinnati Bengals when Geno Atkins and Carlos Dunlap got the better of him.

Other than that, it was an exceptional effort in pass protection, including seven games without allowing a pressure. As mentioned with Waddle, Warford did benefit from the quick-hitting passing game in Detroit as quarterback Matthew Stafford’s 2.51 average time to throw was the sixth-quickest in the league, but it doesn’t take away from Warford standing out as one of the best pass protecting guards in 2013.

Run Blocking

Grade: +6.9
Run Block Snaps: 465

Warford also posted the highest run blocking game among the rookie guards as his +6.9 mark ranked 17th among all guards in the league. He was very good out in space, grading well on second level blocks as well as pull blocks. He also showed well moving big interior players, so it was a strong all-around effort for Warford in the running game. While it doesn’t always make sense to compare grades across positions, it should be noted that his run grade is the highest posted by a Lions offensive linemen since 2009.

Final Word

The Lions have to be thrilled with Warford’s first year, particularly after snagging him in the third round. He has the makings of a long-term starter in Detroit.

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April 19th, 2014, 3:15 pm
Martha Firestone Ford
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Post Re: Larry Warford
I was on his bandwagon very early in the draft process. I was both stunned and thrilled he was still there for us in the 3rd round. He was the player I most wanted to be there. But, I didn't think he would be.

I feel the same way about CJ Fiedorowicz TE, Iowa this year. But, since we re-signed Pettigrew, I don't think TE is a very high priority in the draft this year.

April 19th, 2014, 4:51 pm
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Post Re: Larry Warford
Maybe in the 4th if the right one falls.

April 19th, 2014, 6:47 pm
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Post Re: Larry Warford
While it doesn’t always make sense to compare grades across positions, it should be noted that his run grade is the highest posted by a Lions offensive linemen since 2009.

Who could that have been? Rob Sims? I didn't know we had any offensive lineman in 2009 that would have rated highly for run blocking.

I wonder how Waddle scores compared to all of the OTs.

April 20th, 2014, 8:37 pm
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