- Jane McManus, Reporter & Columnist, espnW.com
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With the Giants off until training camp, we're periodically taking a look at what the coaches are saying about how their positions looked this offseason in OTAs.
Today, we look at Pat Flaherty's thoughts on the offensive line.
Pugh research: The Giants may have surprised some draft watchers when they decided to pick Justin Pugh 19th overall. The Syracuse tackle will have an opportunity to compete against veteran David Diehl for the starting right tackle spot. James Brewer will also be in the mix.
Pugh was working with the second-team offense during rookie camp with former Syracuse teammate Ryan Nassib. As the team’s top pick, Pugh will be expected to develop and contribute, and so far he seems to be on track.
“He’s working extremely hard,” Flaherty said of Pugh. “He comes to work every day. He’s still finding some things out about the NFL, which he will continue to do for a long time. But he’s conscientious, he gives good effort. He’s a guy that wants to learn football, wants to learn the techniques of the NFL as much as anyone.”
On down the line: The only member of the offensive line who is healthy and has his spot locked up right now is left tackle Will Beatty, who recently signed a five-year deal. To varying degrees, the other four starting spots are potentially in play. Jim Cordle backed up David Baas at center this spring and remains an option, and seventh-round pick Eric Herman could get a look at a few spots with two key players coming off injuries.
Chris Snee, who plays right guard, is rehabilitating a hip injury, and Baas is healing from offseason elbow surgery. Those two were at the voluntary OTAs and attended the mandatory minicamp, but did not participate.
“I think they’re going to be ready,” Flaherty said. “They’re out there. They’re doing what they can do on the field right now. In the classroom they’re doing everything they need to do. They’re focused. They’ve seen all of the cutups. They’ve actually done extra work in the classroom when they couldn’t be on the field. I anticipate them being ready for training camp.”