The New York Giants have a huge hole in their offensive line. After shoring up the tackle position in this year’s draft, the Gmen did not do much to improve the center position. Jon Halapio spent most of the 2019 season as the team’s starting center, however, inconsistent play and a season-ending injury will lead the team to find someone else to man the position.
Now the Giants have a positional battle for the starting center job. Players such as Spencer Pulley, Shane Lemieux, and Nick Gates will be competing for the job. A report came out today regarding Nick Gates and his journey to win the center job.
Nick Gates Snapping In Las Vegas
According to Ryan Dunleavy of the NY Post, Nick Gates is practicing snapping to Raiders quarterback Derek Carr and working alongside Giants teammate Will Hernandez near his home in Las Vegas.
Nick Gates has been working hard this offseason. The former undrafted rookie is training to become the team’s center in 2020. Now, entering his third season, Gates is attempting to undergo a position change in hopes of winning the new job opening. Dave Gettleman has mentioned Nick Gates as a strong candidate for the job in previous interviews.
“We have faith in Nick Gates.’’ – Giants general manager Dave Gettleman
“You know, just for what it’s worth, we’ve talked about Nick [playing center]. He did do some of that last year in practice, so it’s not completely new. Nick is smart. The thing you love about Nick is just how tough he is, because it’s a fist fight in there. There’s no doubt about that. History tells you that the toughness of your team is really, really indicated by the toughness of your offensive line. So, we’re always looking for that kind of piece. Nick would be in consideration at center, absolutely.” – Dave Gettleman on Nick Gates
Nick Gates did practice at center in 2019. He also started games at both right tackle and right guard in place of an injured Kevin Zeitler and an injured Mike Remmers. In Gates’s start at right guard in December he did not allow a single pressure and played an excellent game. Gates finished the 2019 season with a 77.0 overall grade and only 1 sack allowed in 290 snaps (Pro Football Focus).
Nick Gates flashed a lot of potential in 2019. He contributed quality snaps when he was on the field and made a lot of progress towards becoming a starting offensive lineman in the NFL. It is encouraging to read that Gates is training for the center position at which the Giants need a major upgrade. Maybe Nick Gates will be that upgrade.