Buy Or Sell: Kendrick Green Will Look Better At Guard Than At Center This Year

With the 2022 new league year, the questions will be plenty for quite a while, even as the Pittsburgh Steelers spend cash and cap space and use draft picks in an effort to find answers. We don’t know who the quarterback is going to be yet—even if we have a good idea. How will the offensive line be formulated? How will the secondary develop amid changes, including to the coaching staff? What does Teryl Austin bring to the table—and Brian Flores? What will Matt Canada’s offense look like absent Ben Roethlisberger?

These sorts of uncertainties are what I will look to address in our Buy or Sell series. In each installment, I will introduce a topic statement and weigh some of the arguments for either buying it (meaning that you agree with it or expect it to be true) or selling it (meaning you disagree with it or expect it to be false).

Topic Statement: Kendrick Green will look better at guard than he did (or would now) at center.

Explanation: The 2021 third-round draft pick started most of his rookie season at center before suffering a late injury. Having spent most of his college career at guard, he openly talked about being out of his comfort zone playing center. He is now competing with Kevin Dotson for the starting left guard job this offseason, with free agent Mason Cole seemingly having been anointed their new starting center. Presuming that Green ends up in a backup role, he will, of course, have to play both interior positions, and given that John Leglue started several games in 2021, there is more than a fair chance we see Green playing snaps, maybe at both guard and center, in 2022.


In a shocking revelation, recent studies have strongly indicated that people do better at things the more comfortable they are doing them. And Kendrick Green is more comfortable playing guard than he is playing center.

He spent a fair amount of time during his rookie season telegraphing the fact that he was having issues adjusting to playing center full-time, repeatedly acknowledging to the media that there were areas associated with the position that he was really struggling with.

Even earlier this offseason, he told reporters that his comfort level playing center in 2021 was at a two, and that now, it’s at a six. Surely his number is higher at guard. He should look better at center in 2022 in comparison to how he looked at center in 2021, but he will also look better at guard in 2022 than he will at center in 2022. Because that’s what he is: a guard.


This is a tricky case to argue, because not only are we dealing with a position switch, we’re also handling a key period of maturation from year one to year two. Even if he does look better this year, it doesn’t have to be because of the position he’s playing but because of the experience he has gained as an NFL player.

Yes, he had some obvious growing pains last season that could be tied directly to playing center, but frankly, a lot of what went wrong from him last year also went wrong from him in college at guard. When talking about center, we’re mainly talking about pre-snap and immediate post-snap concerns. He lost plenty of reps last year well after the snap, and, truth be told, he’s going to be even more overwhelmed at guard in the NFL, because they more frequently have to handle bigger men who are going to overpower him. The center position is often more of a helper role.

It’s quite possible that he actually looks better at center this year than at guard, assuming that he can actually become better acclimated to playing the position. And he will have to play center if he’s not starting, which he probably won’t, so this isn’t a rhetorical question. He will probably be their backup center.

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