In just the first week of training camp, the expected starting offensive guard for the New York Giants, Shane Lemieux, suffered a knee injury that has kept him out ever since. Slowly rehabilitating and working his way back from the injury, Lemieux is still projected to be the Week 1 starter against the Denver Broncos. However, the knee issue he is facing is far more significant than originally reported.
Head coach Joe Judge indicated that Lemieux’s injury wasnâ€™t notable and that the team had dodged a bullet. Nonetheless, it was discovered that Lemieux was dealing with a partially torn patellar tendon, which doesnâ€™t bode well for the second-year player who struggled considerably during his rookie season. Shane is still committed to starting the regular season and fighting through the injury, despite the pain and the potential for a complete tendon tear.
Shane Lemieux having a partially torn patellar tendon and having missed virtually all of practice and preseason is making me think the Giants might roll with Ben Bredeson as the starting left guard to open the year.
May even put Bredeson at RG and Hernandez at LG.
— Alex Wilson (@AlexWilsonESM) September 1, 2021
Last season, Lemieux allowed five sacks, 14 QB hurries, and 25 pressures as one of the worst graded pass-blocking linemen in the NFL. The Giants trusting him with a starting job and injecting minimal competition was optimistic, to begin with, which led to them trading a fourth-round pick for Baltimore Ravens interior guard Ben Bredeson, a 5th round and 7th round pick.
Bredeson played in just five games last year, with all but one snap coming at in-line tight end. However, the fourth-round pick from 2020 out of Michigan had a stellar preseason at right guard, allowing just two hurries and two pressures over 182 offensive snaps.
The former Michigan stand-out has experience playing right and left guard, giving him a bit of versatility for a team that is still looking for a bonafide starter on the left side.
The Giants have a big decision to make in less than two weeks: either starting an injured player who struggled in his rookie season or plugging in a newly acquired lineman who doesnâ€™t even know the playbook. The Giants will have to provide him with a crash course to prepare to potentially make a Week 1 appearance.
Ideally, the Giants will have Lemieux start against Denver, and Bredeson prepare for Week 2 against Washington, as the Giants play that upcoming Thursday night on a short week.
The issue at left guard is a bit more strenuous than previously thought, especially with the news regarding Lemieux’s injury. The Giants seem to be scrambling but at least have a long-term fix. Thereâ€™s no guaranteeing Bredeson will pan out. The front office might’ve been a bit too confident considering the turnover they just experienced in the trenches.