After starting 10 games last year at guard, the 2012 second-round pick is making the move back to his original position during this year’s training camp. Early reports of the transition were positive, with quarterback
Konz has established this presence by coming to work ready each day and doing the requisite studying and preparation that comes with the position in order to make sure the line can play effectively together. On Sunday, the last day of camp, Konz said in addition to the physical play of the line, he’s pleased with how their communication has been.
“I’m extremely happy with how we’ve played communication wise,” Konz said. “But more importantly physically. Sometimes you just see base looks in the preseason and you just want to see how you are one-on-one and I thought we handled that very well.”
On the field, Konz is showing he’s a player that can anchor the middle of the line and keep the pocket from collapsing. He’s faced two strong tests in the first two weeks of the preseason. Defensive tackles Geno Atkins of Haloti Ngata are two of the best in the league at their position and he may not face two better ones all season. Konz said the matchups were a good warm-up for the regular season and taught him a few lessons.
“I thought I did well,” Konz said of his play. “I think those guys, since they’re older, they’re smarter. Sometimes you’ve got to go a little slower on them instead of out-youthing them sometimes and get on them too fast. They’re looking for you to make a wrong move. I think preseason is good for slowing it down a little bit, seeing what you have to do and then getting physical.”
The physical nature of the offensive line is what this year’s group wants to be known for. The youth injection they’ve undergone this offseason, Konz thinks, will lead to an aggressive unit eager to get after each block.
“I think with youth comes that tenacity and fire,” Konz said. “We haven’t had a lot of guys with too much experience. … (With a) little more youth is a little more tenacity and I think that’s who we’re going to be this year.”