David Bakhtiari 2014 Report Card – Player Grades

Green Bay Packers Report Cards, Player Grades
Packers OL David Bakhtiari

1) Introduction: David Bakhtriari entered the 2014 season as his second year as the Packers’ starting left tackle. Following a promising 2013 rookie season, expectations were high for Bakhtiari. The left tackle position is one of the most difficult positions to play outside of the quarterback, and there are only a few elite talents playing the blindside. Bakhtiari had an up and down season and has plenty of room to improve.

2) Profile:

David Bakhtiari

  • Age: 23
  • Born: 9/30/1991 in Burlingame, CA
  • Height: 6’4″
  • Weight: 310
  • College: Colorado
  • Rookie Year: 2013
  • NFL Experience: 2 years

Career Stats and more

3) Expectations coming into the season: Bakhtiari was thrust into the 2013 starting lineup after Bryan Bulaga tore his ACL in the preseason during his experimental switch from right tackle to left tackle. His 2013 rookie season showed a lot of promise and he was poised to use that as a springboard into 2014. His biggest criticisms from 2013 were he was undersized and a little weak for left tackle and he needed to improve his slide step in pass protection. Bakhtiari spent considerable time in the weight room and entered the 2014 bigger and stronger than the previous year. The Packers were expecting him to own the left tackle position and take the next step.

4) Player’s highlights/low-lights: Bakhtiari had an up and down 2014 season. Including the playoffs, he only had five positive Pro Football Focus grades, and the remaining 13 games were all negative grades. His two worst games were the week 1 loss to Seattle (-4.5) and the week 12 win against Minnesota (-4.2). His two best games were the week 7 and 16 wins against the Panthers (+2.3) and Buccaneers (+2.3), respectively.

5) Player’s contribution to the overall team success: Bakhtiari was noticeably bigger and stronger in 2014, but that wasn’t always evident in his play. On the season, he earned a Pro Football Focus grade of -7.1. His pass blocking was good, earning a grade of +7.5 despite yielding 6 quarterback sacks. Run blocking, however, was a different story and he graded out with a very disappointing -13.2. Overall, he was Pro Football Focus’ 53rd overall offensive tackle. While it was encouraging to see his pass protection to be very solid, his biggest strength coming out of college was his projection to be an excellent zone run blocker. Left tackle is a difficult position, but he was clearly the weakest link, although not a weak link, along the offensive line.

6) Player’s contributions in the playoffs: Bakhtiari had a solid performance (+2.0) against Dallas in the Divisional Round, but fell back to earth (-1.2) against Seattle in the NFC Championship Game. With Aaron Rodgers injured and needing every second in the pocket and a healthy running game, Bakhtiari didn’t deliver when he was counted on the most. Red zone and goal line issues left several points on the field against the Seahawks.

7) Intangibles: Jimmy Fallon had a skit that featured Bakhtiari as the “strongest Kardashian sister.” His teammates seem to love him and he’s a popular guy in the locker room.

Season Report Card (Player Grades):

(B-) Level of expectations met during the season.

(B-) Contributions to team’s overall success.

(C) Contributions to team during the playoffs.

Overall Grade: C+


Jay Hodgson is an independent sports blogger writing for AllGreenBayPackers.com and WISports.com.

Follow Jay on twitter at @jys_h.


12 thoughts on “David Bakhtiari 2014 Report Card – Player Grades

  1. The written comments are spot on, really excellent. Grades (which are hard!) are close, but in the close calls you’re more generous than I am. PFF seems pretty harsh: I think he’s better than the 53rd best tackle. I’ve taken some heat for writing that Bakh is a below average starting LT, but I think he ticked up a notch to close to, maybe even, average in 2014/15, & certainly not 53rd out of 64 starting tackles.

    I thought Bakh’s run blocking got better after the bye. Pretty good in pass pro in his rookie year, and maybe he improved a bit. I expected him to get better at run blocking, and he did, but moderately. Expectation is C+ or B-.

    I can’t get to B- for on-field contribution. Maybe if you factor in that in GB, the LT’s primary objective is to keep Rodgers upright, then Bakh did that pretty well. Good, not great, pass pro, bad (terrible in PFF’s estimation) run blocking, shouldn’t be better than a C.

    Post season grade seems about right, either a C or a C+. +2.0 against Dallas, and -1.2 against Seattle (net for playoffs of +0.8) seems to be a C+. [We nasty nitpickers could point out that Linsley’s +2.0 and 0.0 grades in the postseason (net of +2.0) only got him a straight C. Of course, I take PFF with a grain of salt, and I’m sure you formed your own opinion.] I’d give Bakhtiari overall either a C or C+. Again, best value guy on the team.

  2. I thought that he did a pretty good job, particularly as we got into the playoffs. To have your LT anything less than a “B” can’t be good in this league. Not sure I understand how he rates so low (53rd best tackle -yikes). I would hate to see how we would fare with any of the other linemen in the LT position

  3. I was surprised he was rated just 53rd of 64 LT. First, it looks like he was worser than lot of backups (32 teams, 32 LT – he is 53rd, so there is 20 back up LTs better than Bakhtiari?) and it must produce lot of sacks (Aaron was more on the ground than on the feet? Did I watched the same games as you did?), and our running game had to been nowhere (interesting: Green Bay packers was 11th by rushing in the league!). Can someone explain me that stupid rating? I really do not understand the process. I remember all experts & “experts” was delightful how many time Aaron had in the pocket to throw the ball. It must be in the games when David Bakhtiari did not play… Otherwise I really do not understand!

    1. Croat – I understand your appreciation for Bakhtiari playing hard, which he does. However, he has killed or hurt numerous Packers drives with penalties, usually holding calls. This a sign that he is being beaten in his one on one matchups or possibly that his technique is bad. At the NFL level bad technique is usually forced on an OL because, again, they are being overpowered by their opponent. His run blocking needs to improve as well. As Savage correctly points out in his post Bakhtiari may be an interim LT until a better player comes along and we may already have a better LT with Tretter. Thanks, Since ’61

      1. I would like to thank to both, Ed & Since. I know and recognize that the weakest link in our OL is David. But there is no way he is 53rd, even when you take all 64 OT in the count! Just 11 players worser than David. That is what bothers me. And, yes, I think he has some space to grow. How much he will grow it depends on lot of factors, most important is David himself. Also, there is always someone better tomorrow, because this is the game of young. So, I will not have any objections if Tretter show better qualities and replace David. But, still, we have to thank David for his contribution, because he was in the group who allows Aaron to keep ball longer that any QB in NFL. And that means something. I was not complaining on the grade made by Jay, but on the grade PFF was marking him!

        1. Croat – I take PFF ratings with a grain of salt. Their approach is no more or less subjective than anyone else. Their rating is something to consider in a player’s evaluation not a final or official grading. I agree that Baku has some room to grow. Maybe Solari can help in that department. If he cuts down on his penalties alone it would make a difference for him. Thanks, Since ’61

    2. Croat,

      The PFF grades are for all Tackles (they don’t split LT from RT). So there are 64 starting LT+RT, 2 per team.

      Generally you want your best tackle on the left side, so 53rd there is not good. On the other hand, linemen usually take a little longer to fully develop. Bakh still has some upside.

  4. In my mind Bakthiari is the reason why the Packers prefer to run to their right on so many plays and also why they have problems in goal line and short yardage. Opposing Ds know that he can be overpowered or at worst that they can hold the point of attack against Bakthiari. Jay, your comments about his run blocking are right on and I agree that his pass blocking is a little better than average. While I realize that Bakh is a fan and player favorite he is never going to be a Chad Clifton or Mark Tauscher and that is what is missing from the Packer’s OL to truly make them a dominant OL now that Linsley has shored up the Center position. Given our draft position it’s unlikely that we will pick up a top tier LT in the draft but we need one. Maybe Tretter is destined for LT with Bakh as the backup. I think the C+ grade is about the best that we can expect from Bakh, maybe he pushes up to a B- next season. Thanks, Since ’61

    1. You are high on Tretter. You may be right. Tretter needs time to see what he can do a OT and OG. I do think that Bakhtiari would be great as the utility offensive lineman. We know Bakh can play OT, and I would like to see him try his hand at OG and even Center. He has the athleticism to play all over, not sure that he has the bulk and strength. He’ll get better too.

      1. Reynoldo – I’m basically in the same place as you, in that we both believe that Bakh would be a great utility OL, along with Barclay. Trotter needs to stay healthy and get some playing time. Then we can determine what he is capable of. In the meantime if TT can grab a good OT in the draft he should go for it. A team can never have enough big bodies. Thanks, Since ’61

  5. As long as he has fun in the locker room and makes his teammates happy, who cares how he plays on the field. TT may give him a raise.

  6. Maybe Bahk is just a good interim LT until Ted finds the long term anchor. DB’s going to be eligible for his second contract in another year, and I can’t see the Packers paying this guy scale starting LT money.

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