The NFL’s best guards, No. 9: David DeCastro
The 2012 first-rounder has started every game the past two seasons, and he was recognized for his work last year with first-team All-Pro and Pro Bowl nods. The pressure on DeCastro ratcheted up when center Maurkice Pouncey fractured his leg during the preseason—Pouncey also missed 15 games in 2013, DeCastro’s first year as a full-time starter. DeCastro’s entire ’15 performance was clean, as he allowed just 1.5 sacks on the Steelers’ 590 pass attempts and was flagged a mere three times, all for false starts. The team’s third-ranked rushing attack, which happened largely without Le’Veon Bell, also owes a large thanks to DeCastro. As has become the norm for Stanford O-linemen, DeCastro is adept at getting out on the edge as a pulling blocker. Pittsburgh’s run game relied on DeCastro’s agility.