PFF still down on Giants’ offensive line despite offseason upgrades

New York Giants offensive tackle Evan Neal (73) and New York Giants offensive tackle Andrew Thomas (78) exit the field after defeating the Carolina Panthers at MetLife Stadium

The New York Giants’ offensive line has been an issue that has plagued the team for the better part of the last decade. Last season, in particular, was one of the worst performances the offensive line has had, giving up 85 sacks, 20 more than the second-place Washington Commanders. Efforts have been made by Big Blue to address this, bringing in a series of new additions to the Giants’ offensive front.

Free agency acquisitions looking to have a profound impact on the Giants’ offensive front

Jermaine Eluemunor, Giants
Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

In free agency, the Giants signed Joe Runyan Jr., Jermaine Eluemunor, Matt Nelson, Austin Schlottmann, and Aaron Stinnie to bolster the team’s depth up front. New York’s offensive line was battered with injuries last season, resulting in some players, such as Joshua Ezeudu, having to play out of position, to which they struggled immensely.

Poor performances from the Giants’ younger linemen have increased the need for depth at the position. Evan Neal and John Michael Schmitz have both been very underwhelming. Additionally, Andrew Thomas, usually one of the league’s finest offensive tackles, struggled at times last season as he battled through injury.

New York’s O-Line is coming off a disastrous 2023 season

Oct 24, 2021; East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA; New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones (8) is sacked by Carolina Panthers defensive end Brian Burns (53) during the first half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

The Giants’ offensive line in 2023 was amongst the worst in franchise, and NFL history. Their 85 sacks allowed is by far the most in franchise history, 23 more than the 62 sacks they allowed in 1966. Last season’s sack total is also the 2nd most allowed in NFL history, behind just the 1986 Philadelphia Eagles, who allowed 104.

Giants ranked 29th in offensive line rankings by Pro Football Focus

New York Giants offensive tackle Andrew Thomas (78) and offensive tackle Tyre Phillips (79) and offensive tackle Korey Cunningham (70) jog on the field with teammates during training camp at the Quest Diagnostics Training Facility

Despite their upgrades, Pro Football Focus still ranks the Giants as one of the league’s worst offensive lines heading into this upcoming season, ranking 29th out of 32 teams.

“NFL’s worst in 2023, partially due to injuries. While they brought in a couple of new players in Jermaine Eluemunor and Jon Runyan to start at guard, they need their returners to improve drastically,” said PFF’s Zoltán Buday.

Buday also noted the struggles of the mainstays on the Giants’ offensive line, and how bounce-back seasons from them will be necessary for the team to avoid a repeat of last season.

“Center John Michael Schmitz Jr., a second-round pick in 2023, and right tackle Evan Neal, a top-10 pick in 2022, have been disappointing so far. Even left tackle Andrew Thomas staying healthy and getting back to his 2022 form wouldn’t make up for poor performances from the other young players on the line in 2024.”

It can only go up for the Giants next season after one of the league’s worst offensive line displays in its 103-year history. New York will hope that its new additions can breathe life into a crippling offensive line desperate for half-decent production.

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