Significant questions on offensive line

July, 24, 2011
7/24/11
3:00
PM ET
In putting together a roster breakdown that is now posted on ESPNBoston.com, one theme came to the forefront: The Patriots have more questions along the offensive line than any other position.

Among them:

1. Will first-round pick Nate Solder be ready to contribute from Day 1 at left tackle?

2. Is veteran Matt Light returning at left tackle to help ease Solder's transition?

3. Does Logan Mankins sign his franchise tender? If not, who steps in?

4. Will the back injury that sidelined Nick Kaczur in 2010, and his $4.3 million cap charge, affect his roster status?

5. Who fills the void created by Stephen Neal's retirement at right guard?

One factor that should help is that Dante Scarnecchia is considered one of the top offensive line coaches in the NFL. But Scarnecchia would be the first to admit that a coach can only do so much; it still comes down to talent.

As the discussion shifts from the lockout to pure football chatter, the make-up of the offensive line is one of the Patriots' biggest storylines entering training camp.

Mike Reiss

ESPN New England Patriots reporter

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