The New York Giants are gearing up to face off against the Washington Commanders in Week 7, and while the team has started 1–5 on the year, they’re looking to get back on track and put together a winning performance.
Unfortunately, they will be without several more starters this week, specifically offensive tackle Evan Neal and starting cornerback Adoree Jackson.
Neal, who has struggled up at this point in the season, has played for 110 offensive snaps at right tackle, giving up 29 pressures and one sack. He’s had a few decent performances in run blocking but has otherwise struggled in pass protection.
Neal, a former Alabama product, was hoping to take a big step forward during his sophomore season, but a lack of reaction timing and flexibility has dampened his development.
Ultimately, the Giants may need to go in another direction at right tackle in the future if Neal can’t take a big step forward after he returns from an ankle injury.
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The Giants Are Leaning on Their Practice Squad
In his place, the Giants recently scooped up former offensive tackle Tyre Phillips from the Philadelphia Eagles’ practice squad. Phillips, 26, is a former third-round pick by Baltimore back in 2020.
Last year, he played 365 snaps for the Giants, giving up 16 pressures and three sacks. He’s put together some strong performances in pass protection at right tackle, so the Giants will likely utilize him there, with veteran Justin Pugh getting the start at left tackle.
Pugh signed a deal to stick with the Giants for the remainder of the 2023 season, but he has limited experience at left tackle, predominantly featuring at left guard and right tackle. The Giants will simply have to hope for the best against a strong Washington pass rush.
At cornerback, Jackson’s absence will be felt. The 28-year-old has struggled this season across the 143 snaps, posting 21 tackles, a 15.4% missed tackle rate, and a 75% reception rate, including 345 yards and one touchdown allowed. Having moved into the slot early in the year, Jackson transitioned back to the outside, shifting Tre Hawkins to the bench. However, it is possible that Hawkins will start in the absence of Jackson, otherwise we may see more Cor’Dale Flott on the outside.
While the Giants are desperately trying to get back in the win column, the number of injuries they continue to sustain is a recipe for failure.