Giants work out familiar face to potentially bolster offensive line depth

Justin Pugh, New York Giants
Scott Galvin-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Giants held a workout on Wednesday as the team seeks reinforcements on the offensive line. Veteran offensive lineman Justin Pugh reportedly worked out for Big Blue amidst the team’s struggles to find continuity on their offensive line. Pugh, a former first-round pick with the Giants, could potentially be a solid mid-season pickup to bolster the team’s unit up front.

Giants work out Justin Pugh

Pugh is a 10-year NFL veteran who started his career as a first-round pick with the Giants in 2013. He went on to have five successful seasons with Big Blue before heading to the West Coast and spending the past five seasons with the Arizona Cardinals.

In 2022, Pugh started five games at left guard for Arizona. He was on the field for 263 snaps, surrendering eight pressures and not allowing a single sack or quarterback hit. He earned a 61.0 overall grade from Pro Football Focus before his season was cut short by an ACL tear.

The veteran offensive lineman had said earlier in the offseason that his recovery is “going great.” Having him in for a workout gave New York a first-hand look at Pugh’s health as they gauge whether or not he is ready to compete sometime this season.

Pugh has expressed interest in joining Big Blue

On an episode of the Talkin’ Ball Podcast with Pat Leonard of the NY Daily News, Pugh said that he was “100% definitely eyeing” a potential reunion with the Giants last month. He may soon get his wish after working out for the team on Wednesday.

What could Pugh bring to the Giants?

Coming off a season-ending ACL injury, it’s unclear what Pugh could provide at this stage in his career. The 33-year-old has been a quality starter throughout his NFL career, however, he may only be in consideration for a spot on New York’s practice squad.

The Giants’ offensive line has been reshuffled after a disastrous start to the season. LT Andrew Thomas is still sidelined with a hamstring injury, leaving second-year OL Joshua Ezeudu to start in his place.

Ezeudu held his own in Week 2, helping Big Blue pull off a historic comeback win. But in that game, starting G Ben Bredeson suffered a concussion, leaving inexperienced second-year G Marcus McKethan and previously-benched veteran Mark Glowinski as the team’s two starters on the interior.

With injuries piling up on the offensive line, it would make sense for New York to bring in reinforcements. Pugh could be seen as a quality backup that the Giants could sign to bolster their offensive line depth and provide stability behind some of their more inexperienced linemen.

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