In 2013, the Green Bay Packers drafted left tackle, David Bakhtiari, 12th in the fourth round and 109th overall. The Packers selected defensive end Datone Jones and running back Eddie Lacy ahead of Bakhtiari, yet more than likely, if NFL teams had the foresight of what he’d become, he would have gone in the first round. In each season following his rookie year, Bakhtiari maintained a pass-blocking grade of 85.0 or greater. He has kept above 96.4 since 2016. In his tenure with the Packers, he has only missed six starts. Even though he battled multiple knee issues in 2018 and injured his hip flexor at the New York Jets, the tackle still started all 16 games. Through his toughness, leadership, selflessness, and talent, David Bakhtiari proves he is the best pass-blocker in the NFL.
David Bakhtiari Proves He is the Best Pass-Blocker in the NFL
While the 2018 season resulted in yet another early finish for the team, Green Bay can be incredibly proud of their left tackle who’s taking home multiple accolades. Zach Kruse, a managing editor for Packers Wire, reports that Bakhtiari was named All-Pro by Pro Football Focus (PFF) for the third straight year. This year, his talents were also recognized by the Professional Football Writers of America (PFWA) as they named him to their All-NFL team for the first time.
Bakhtiari is the epitome of what the Packers’ offensive line should strive to be. The Packers offensive line was ranked seventh following Week 17, according to PFF. This was due in large part to Bakhtiari’s high-flying pass protection abilities.
Bakhtiari surpasses even Joe Thomas, who protected Browns’ quarterbacks for 11 years with 10,363 consecutive snaps, as the best pass-blocker in the NFL. According to PFF, Thomas has a career pass-blocking grade of 92.4, making him second to the Packers’ offensive lineman. Both tackles gave up 49 pressures. However, Bakhtiari did so on only 1,612 pass-blocking snaps while Thomas did so on 1,030.
Thomas was named All-Pro three times by the PFF, too, but they were not consecutive. Because of his illustrious career, he is beloved and esteemed by many around the league as one of the greatest left tackles. Certainly, a 92.4 career pass-blocking grade is rather impressive. So, to have Bakhtiari’s name mentioned alongside this great and have the stats prove he’s a little bit ahead of him is high praise. The best part is that the Packer is nowhere near done.
Bakhtiari’s Contract with the Packers
The left tackle is in contract with the Packers through 2020. Despite his peers, such as Taylor Lewan and Jake Matthews, signing new and lucrative deals before the 2018 season, Bakhtiari is content with his current agreement. He told Jason Wilde of the Wisconsin State Journal, “I’m very fortunate in where I’m at, and I’m truly happy for those guys and where they’re at.”
Bakhtiari said this of his peers’ new contracts in 2018– “That’s great. That’s great for the market, great for the league, great for the players – I’m just hoping that continues, not only on the left tackle position but across the board.” He is willing to patiently wait for a new contract that will more accurately reflect his contribution to the offensive line. His friend and quarterback received a well-deserved increase after years of waiting and negotiating. Hopefully, Bakhtiari will see his own patience pay off as well.
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