The New York Giants suffered an embarrassing loss on opening weekend against the Dallas Cowboys. Almost everyone on the team underperformed. The Giants’ defense allowed the Cowboys’ offense to gain a total of 494 yards of offense. They also allowed Dak Prescott to have a career day with a perfect passer rating of 158.3.
But one position group did not underperform. In fact, the Giants’ new offensive line actually played an excellent game and exceeded expectations. General Manager Dave Gettleman has made it a point to rebuild the offensive line over the last two years, and in week one, it seemed like the rebuild is finally coming to fruition.
The Giants’ offensive line allowed only 1 sack and 6 quarterback hits on 44 dropbacks against the Cowboys. According to Pro Football Focus, the offensive line had a 70.9 overall grade in pass blocking and a grade of 82.6 in run blocking that lead the league in week one.
The Giants’ offensive line had a tough matchup last week and performed well. The Cowboys’ defensive line featured DeMarcus Lawrence, one of the NFL’s better arrogant pass-rushers. In week two, the Giants will have another tough matchup in the trenches. This week, they will need to focus on a rookie.
Shutting Down Ed Oliver
The Buffalo Bills selected an impact defender with the ninth overall pick in the 2019 NFL Draft. Ed Oliver’s draft stock slid from a potential top-three pick to the back end of the top-ten. Oliver ended up falling right into Buffalo’s lap.
Ed Oliver was impressive in week one. His impact was felt instantly as he applied pressure to Jets second-year quarterback Sam Darnold. Ed Oliver did not record a sack, but he came close a couple of times and did total two tackles.
In week one, Oliver took 47 defensive snaps, which was 65 percent of the team’s total and led all defensive tackle. Pro Football Focus was very impressed with Oliver in week one, giving him an overall grade of 80.3. PFF also noted that Ed Oliver graded north of 75.0 as both a pass-rusher and a run defender, and ended the game with a defensive stop against the run and five total pressures.
Ed Oliver will be a handful for the Giants’ offensive line in week two. The Giants, fortunately, have the men to match up with the rookie. New York’s interior offensive line is full of strong talent with Kevin Zeitler, Will Hernandez, and Jon Halapio. If the Giants’ offensive line performs as it did in week one, the Giants should be able to shut down Ed Oliver and find more success on offense.