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Raiders Vs. Falcons, Week 6: Sam Baker may be most improved lineman

Atlanta Falcons offensive lineman Sam Baker has improved his performance from last season. How does his stats compare?

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Matt Sullivan - Getty Images

Atlanta Falcons offensive tackle Sam Baker may be the most improved player on the offensive line. Entering the season, there were concerns because of the injury to fellow offensive lineman Will Svitek, that Baker might be the weak link on the line.

According to Pro Football Focus, while Baker's stats are not all-pro level, he has certainly improved from where he was a season ago:

He continued a solid start to the season with his best game of pass protection this season, as he yielded only a pair of hurries this week. Through five weeks of the 2012 season, Baker has allowed only 14 pressures and only three knockdowns (combined hits and sacks) of his quarterback on 230 pass block snaps.

By comparison, Baker gave up as many knockdowns and two fewer hurries in Atlanta's game against the Philadelphia Eagles last season. Baker had been dealing with injuries much of last season, but his improvement this year has partially helped Matt Ryan throw for over 1,500 yards and 13 touchdowns in the first five games this season.

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.