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Coaches Corner: Will the Offensive line step it up?

By Michael Stewart/@TheTruthNYG

As the Giants prepare for the upcoming season, there are many new faces; especially on offensive side of the ball with the addition of WR’s Kenny Golloday, John Ross, 1st round pick Kadarius Toney, TE Kyle Rudolph, RB Devontae Booker and Corey Clement. However; absence from this list is an offensive guard to replace Kevin Zeitler who was a cap casualty in the offseason. Many football experts have expressed that the Giants did improve the offensive weapons for Quarterback Daniel Jones, but are a little uncertain if the offensive line current projected starters will give him enough time to distribute the ball to them or open up running lanes. According to ESPN, the Giants had a 46% pass/block rate in 2020; which placed them in last place in the NFL.

The projected starters are:

LT/Andrew Thomas-Improved his overall game in the second half in 2020.

LG/Shane Lemieux-Solid run blocker, needs to improve in pass protection.

C/Nick Gates-Outstanding production as a 1st time center, but can he repeat?

RG/Will Hernandez-Needs to regain his rookie year form to remain a starter.

RT/Matt Peart-In limited action performed very well and will see more snaps.

Three of the starting five are entering their second season in the NFL and center Nick Gates is entering his second season as a center. Also, throw in the fact that Will Hernandez will be asked to play Right Guard for the first and replacing their best linemen in 2020 (Kevin Zeitler). The premise by the Giants coaching staff is that this unit will improve as a group; which was evident in the second half of the 2020 season. If not, the development of quarterback Daniel Jones will be hindered, despite the talented additions made in the off season. Keep in mind that GM Dave Gettleman and Head Coach Joe Judge could be on the look-out for notable linemen who find themselves on the waiver wire as team’s trim down their rosters before opening day. For now, this looks like the starting unit that the organization hopes to provide enough running lanes and pass protection for the team to succeed.