Thursday, February 28, 2013
Addressing Giants O-line
Eli Manning was sacked just 19 times last season, but that arguably had more to do with his abilities than a dominant offensive line keeping defenders at bay. Certainly, left tackle Will Beatty was a big presence on that O-line in 2013 and he'll continue in that role for the foreseeable future after they inked him to that five-year contract on Wednesday. However, if the New York Giants intend to keep Manning upright for the long term and continue to be an annual Super Bowl contender there are issues that need to be dealt with on their offensive line.
ESPN NFC East blogger Dan Graziano and ESPN Insiders Gary Horton and Field Yates give their thoughts on how the Giants should address this unit during the offseason:
Dan GrazianoGiants wisely work to get younger
"They need to get another player or two whom they can set along a similar developmental track as a long-term piece of reliable furniture. Maybe they draft someone in the first round. Maybe they make a big play for a young stud free agent like an Andre Smith or a Louis Vasquez, or a potential up-and-comer like a Donald Thomas. Who knows? Maybe [James Brewer] progresses as Beatty did and they have a couple of bookend tackles in a couple of years that they drafted and developed themselves. Whatever the answers end up being for the Giants on the offensive line, they're going to have to find them. Sooner or later, they're not going to be able to get by with midround picks and aging veterans. It has worked for them to this point, yes, but there are too many question marks, present and future, on the line to keep ignoring. That's why the best part of the Beatty deal for Giants fans is that it may just signal a crucial and overdue shift in priorities."
Field Yates and Gary HortonOffseason Playbook: Giants
"Offensive line -- This group played pretty well in 2012, especially on the left side, but even with left tackle Will Beatty re-signed, if the Giants can't lock up unrestricted free agent Kevin Boothe at left guard, this unit is in big trouble. The problems are on the right side, with center David Baas and RG Chris Snee suffering through a variety of injuries, while RT David Diehl didn't play well last season, either. The coaches do like young James Brewer, who can play inside or outside, and he could replace Diehl. This is the most vulnerable this group has been in a long time."