Ryan Diem versus Kyle Vanden Bosch

Ryan Diem won round one of his matchup against Kyle Vanden Bosch earlier this year in Tennessee. Greg Talmage looks at how these two warriors compare as they prepare for a second round in the 2005 season.

Kyle Vanden Bosch is having a spectacular season for a team that has been anything but that through eleven games. His 10.5 sacks matches the output of Colts defensive end Robert Mathis, putting both just half a sack behind the NFL leader. Vanden Bosch should present a very interesting match-up for the Colts this week. He's a top-notch pass rusher and Colts OT Ryan Diem is a much better run blocker than pass blocker. So don't be surprised to see a tight-end lining up on the right side of the Colts line from time to time on Sunday in order to double-team Vanden Bosch. 

Ryan Diem struggles in pass protection if he fails to engulf his man. He lacks ideal lateral mobility and the ability to redirect inside after starting outside. He is also vulnerable to double moves. In pass protection, Diem does get a good knee bend, plays with a sound base, and rarely gives ground to bull-rushers when in pass protection. When shielding his quarterback, the key to success for Diem is to use his size to latch on and drive.

The guy is a real road grader. He is a big massive individual who knows how to get adequate hand placement and use his upper body to maintain separation. Diem takes smart angles, plays with a good motor, and fights to sustain the block once in position. 

Vanden Bosch was a second-round pick in the 2001 NFL Draft who features a quick first step and a lot of double moves. He is very active high-motor guy who will win many battles due to effort alone. He fights to get off blocks well and does everything he can to avoid allowing tackles to get their hands on him. His quickness and agility is particularly impressive due to the fact that he's had two major knee injuries prior to this breakout season in Tennessee. His speed and motor will give even the best offensive tackles problems. So most opponents are employing double-teams against him, especially in passing situations. I wouldn't be surprised to see Indianapolis do the same thing on Sunday.

Vanden Bosch can, however, be a liability against the run. This is where Diem should have a nice advantage. When playing the run, Vanden Bosch makes the mistake of letting himself get engulfed by bigger tackles. And if he gets engaged with stronger players, he really struggles to break free. He isn't a good player in short area battles despite his tenacity and gets worn down if forced into a lot of battles in restricted space.

The Colts have a lot of faith in Ryan Diem as a run-blocker. That, combined with Kyle Vanden Bosch's inconsistencies, against should mean plenty of opportunities for Edgerrin James running towards the right-side of the offensive line.

The last time they met
Diem dominated this matchup in the Colts' fourth game of the season in Tennessee. Vanden Bosch entered the game with 13 total tackles and 5 sacks in his first three games. He had just 3 tackles (2 solo, 1 assist) and no sacks while working against Diem.

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