In any given time period from 2014-2019, Zack Martin’s inclusion in the top 20 of a list regarding the NFL’s premier pros would come as no surprise. He’s been nearly unbeatable throughout his career, posting continuous masterpieces one after the other as he’s served as an invaluable cog in one of football’s best offensive lines.
Up until the 2020 season, Martin’s bill of health was clean as a whistle, allowing him to rack up numerous travel points as he ventured to six straight Pro Bowls, collecting four first-team All-Pro awards along the way. But last year’s COVID-ravaged season brought Martin his first physical setback as a professional; a calf strain in Week 12 against Washington. It was just another rung on an extensive ladder of wounds that cut Dallas’ platoon to a severe level of fragility.
Time has healing power though, and Martin still has plenty left in the tank at 30 years old. Pro Football Focus would agree. The in-depth analytical service ranked Martin at 13th on its list of top 50 players heading into the 2021 season, despite his impairment last season.
The site cited his versatility, among a host of other attributes as reasoning behind the ranking:
“The Dallas offensive line fell apart last season, but Martin was still playing his best football right up until getting injured, even when he kicked out to right tackle. Martin earned a PFF overall grade of 91.3 at the time of his injury, allowing just 13 total pressures across 10 games. He has now allowed just one sack in two years for the Cowboys.”
“Sack” and “Zack” just aren’t words you’ll find used together very often, and that’s a sentiment that’s unlikely to change anytime soon.
Let’s hope Zack can help Dak continue avoiding sacks, and help unleash the full breadth of the team’s offensive attack as he rehabs back to full health for the coming year.