Giants’ offensive line shredded ahead of Week 6 against Bills

nfl: seattle seahawks at new york giants, josh ezeudu
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Giants face a significant challenge as they gear up for their Week 6 Prime Time face-off with the Buffalo Bills. With quarterback Daniel Jones sidelined, the Giants turn to backup quarterback Tyrod Taylor, who is set to compete against his former team. Yet, Taylor confronts a daunting task given the state of the offensive line he’ll play behind.

Injuries Pile Up for the Giants’ O-Line

The Giants’ offensive line has suffered its fair share of injuries. Evan Neal, the starting right tackle, is the latest to join the list, nursing an ankle injury that might impair his game.

Neal’s performance had already raised eyebrows, and this setback doesn’t help. Adding to the woes, Andrew Thomas, who sustained a hamstring injury during Week 1 against the Dallas Cowboys, continues to be sidelined. Considering the trajectory of the Giants’ season, there’s a looming threat of Thomas being shifted to the injured reserve. If the team’s record slides to 1-5 after this week, the season might be deemed unrecoverable. In such a scenario, preserving Thomas for the future might be a prudent strategy.

John Michael-Schmitz, the starting center, is another casualty. He managed to feature in four games until a shoulder injury during a clash against the Seattle Seahawks cut his game short after just 11 snaps. Despite these limited appearances, Schmitz’s 199 snaps this year have been commendable, conceding a mere six pressures. It places him amongst the standout performers for the Giants. Although ruled out due to his injury for the upcoming game, the Giants are optimistic about Schmitz returning for Week 7 against the Washington Commanders.

Lineup Adjustments and Concerns

With these setbacks, the Giants are forced into making significant shifts. Josh Ezeudu will resume his role at left tackle, Ben Bredesen will slot in at center, and Marcus McKethan is expected to hold onto his position at right guard. Nevertheless, with Neal’s availability in question, both left guard and right tackle positions might witness a reshuffle.

Mark Glowinski’s recent performances have left much to be desired. In the previous game, he conceded five pressures and two sacks, taking his season’s tally to 15 pressures and five sacks over 205 snaps. It appears Glowinski’s tenure with the Giants might be winding down.

On a brighter note, the Giants’ recent acquisition, Justin Pugh, is poised to step in. Traditionally a left guard, Pugh boasts a remarkable 4,579 snaps in this position. Renowned for his pass protection skills, he stands as a potential savior for the left side of the line. However, challenges remain. Pugh, 33, joined the Giants only a fortnight ago and is rebounding from an ACL injury. But given the dire straits, his experience is invaluable for the Giants. There’s a chance Pugh might shift to right tackle, recalling his earlier days when he accumulated 2,453 snaps in that role.

A Daunting Challenge for Tyrod Taylor

In light of these challenges, Tyrod Taylor finds himself in a precarious situation. The Giants’ ravaged offensive line due to mounting injuries means Taylor has a monumental task ahead, especially when up against the formidable Buffalo defense.