New York Giants right tackle Ereck Flowers has been a lackluster part of the offensive line – on the field, and in the locker room. His glaring weaknesses have been the epitome of disaster for a line that has sacrificed Eli Manning for years now.
On April 30th, 2015, Ereck Flowers was selected as the 9th pick of the NFL Draft to be the Giants’ new left tackle. Coming out of the University of Miami, Flowers definitely had his flaws, and these flaws have steadily become more noticeable since stepping on the field for Big Blue in his rookie season.
The Giants desperately needed a new, young offensive lineman to give Eli Manning time to release the ball, but Flowers is weak pass blocker due to balance issues, has sloppy footwork, and reverts to grabbing edge rushers, ultimately causing six holding calls in two seasons. Former offensive lineman for the Giants, Geoff Schwartz, accused Flowers of “quitting” on the team due to multiple missed blocks and possessing poor technique during games. Most would come to the conclusion that Flowers is nothing more than a Jerry Reese bust.
Last season, the Giants’ organization was in chaos, especially the offensive line. Eli Manning was sacked for a total of 31 times last season, the most since 2013. Flowers, who was then the starting left tackle, played in 46 of 48 games, showing that his strength was undoubtedly his durability. Unfortunately, consistently providing poor performances was not the type of strength that earns you a contract extension.
Although Flowers is a 300-pound aggressive lineman, his inability to maintain his balance and footwork on the left side of the line was too much of a struggle to keep him as the starter moving forward.
One of Dave Gettleman’s first moves as general manager was signing a high-profile LT. The signing of Nate Solder ended the Flowers era, but head coach Pat Shurmur gave him a second chance of life at right tackle. After Bobby Hart, who was Flowers’ best friend on the team coincidentally, was released, he was moved to the right side of the line where he would compete with second-year man, Chad Wheeler.
Given Flowers takes this opportunity wholeheartedly, he can still manage to salvage a slice of success for his NFL career. Maybe, just maybe, he can find his balance as a RT.
One word of advice for Flowers, stick around Solder and learn as much as you can. Leaving your pride behind and focus on becoming the best right tackle you can possibly be. At the very least, be a team player and show that you deserve to be a professional in any sense of the word.