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ESPN Ranks Joe Thuney as the Second-Best Interior Offensive Lineman in the NFL

The Chiefs were the only team to feature multiple players in the top 10

The folks at ESPN continued their positional rankings for this upcoming season on Sunday while showing some much-deserved respect to the interior of the Kansas City Chiefs' offensive line.

For starters, offensive guard Joe Thuney earned the No. 2 overall spot in the interior offensive linemen rankings behind only Dallas Cowboys' guard Zack Martin. Here's what ESPN wrote about Thuney, which included commentary from an anonymous executive:

"Thuney has been a steadying presence for Kansas City since signing a five-year, $80 million deal two offseasons ago. The second-team All-Pro led all linemen with a 98.9 pass block win rate. He has missed two games in seven seasons with Kansas City and New England, where he was also excellent. 'The Chiefs are loaded with offensive linemen, but Thuney is the most valuable because he rarely makes a mistake, he's savvy, he doesn't commit penalties, and he holds up in the run or the pass,' an AFC executive said. 'Not an overwhelming athlete but just really good.'"

Kansas City Chiefs guard Joe Thuney (62) lines up on the line of scrimmage during an NFL football game against the Denver Broncos, Sunday, Jan. 1, 2023, in Kansas City, Mo. Kansas City won 27-24. (Andrew Mather/Kansas City Chiefs via AP)

Thuney wasn't the only member of the Chiefs represented, either. Center Creed Humphrey also earned a spot in the rankings, checking in at No. 8 overall. Here's what the article had to say about Humphrey, which included commentary from an anonymous player:

"Kansas City's revamped offensive line has a core player at center. Many evaluators agree Humphrey, whose 98.1% pass block win rate led all centers last season, has the makings of a star. 'He's really not beholden to any system -- you could put him in any offense, and he would thrive,' a Pro Bowl offensive player said. 'It was good to see that [in 2022] he had to handle more, saw less three-man fronts with Tyreek Hill gone, and he handled it great.'"

Kansas City Chiefs center Creed Humphrey (52) during the NFL Super Bowl 57 football game against the Philadelphia Eagles, Sunday, Feb. 12, 2023, in Glendale, Arizona.

The Chiefs were the only team to feature multiple players in the top 10, and while he didn't make the rankings, offensive guard Trey Smith was also represented with an honorable mention nod. Here's what the article had to say about Smith, which also included analysis by an anonymous player:

"Smith played 987 offensive snaps and posted a 95.9% pass block win rate for the Super Bowl LVII champions. 'Powerful. He's a top-10 player at his position,' a veteran Pro Bowl player said. 'Only knock on him is what's a knock for a lot of powerful guys: He tries to make the big splash hit, and that gets him off balance.'"

The rankings – which surveyed a group of more than 80 league executives, coaches, scouts and players – are a composite of who the voters believe to be the best of the best at every position in the NFL. In addition to the offensive line, Kansas City was also well-represented in the rankings at both quarterback and tight end, where Patrick Mahomes and Travis Kelce each took the top spot at their respective positions. The Chiefs were near the top in the defensive tackle rankings, too, as Chris Jones landed at No. 2 behind only the Los Angeles Rams' Aaron Donald.

Elsewhere in the rankings, Nick Bolton checked in at No. 8 among off-ball linebackers and L'Jarius Sneed earned an honorable mention among cornerbacks.

For a look at the entire rankings up to this point, click here.