As the New York Giants continue to coast through the offseason, one major question remains on the offensive side of the ball. General manager Dave Gettleman addressed the offensive line efficiently, as he snagged left tackle Nate Solder in free agency and drafted guard Will Hernandez in the second-round.
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Here’s what the starting line might look like come September:
LT: Nate Solder
LG: Will Hernandez
C: Brett Jones
RG: Patrick Omameh
RT: Ereck Flowers/Chad Wheeler
The major question mark is at right tackle, where Flowers and Wheeler will battle it out for the starting job. Flowers is making the transition from left to right, which will require him to learn a new technique and adapt to an entirely different concept. The forth-year lineman struggled immensely at the LT position before being replaced, consistently being overwhelmed on the edge by faster and stronger rushers. His footwork and hand placement was never developed properly. It’s possible Flowers simply doesn’t have the physical tools to blossom into a stating caliber player.
Chad Wheeler on the other hand is going into his second-year as an undrafted free agent. He impressed in the Giants’ win over the Kansas City Chiefs in 2017.
Here’s a clip detailing his strengths:
— Brian Baldinger (@BaldyNFL) November 21, 2017
Wheeler starts the play with an immediate double-team assignment alongside D.J. Fluker. They engage the Chiefs’ defensive end well, which eventually becomes a 1v1 match-up against Wheeler. You can see how the UDFA holds on tight and utilize his hands to keep the defender in-front of him. Running back Orleans Darkwa attacks the left side of the line, which collapses quickly, leaving him no choice but to bolt right into Wheeler’s assignment.
Despite the outcome of the play, Wheeler displayed good strength and balance once he successfully engaged. If he can develop his speed and lateral quickness to contain fast edge rushers, he could beat out Flowers for the vacant right tackle spot.