Commentary

Giants' run game needs to ramp up

Subpar efforts have G-Men hoping to get rushing attack going against the Seahawks

Updated: October 6, 2011, 8:35 AM ET
By Ohm Youngmisuk | ESPNNewYork.com

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- During the first week of training camp, the New York Giants' offensive line underwent a makeover.

The team released longtime center Shaun O'Hara and gritty guard Rich Seubert. The Giants signed center David Baas, promoted Will Beatty to left tackle and moved David Diehl to left guard.

Four games into the season, the Giants' front line is still looking for its first game with a 100-yard rusher. Going into Sunday's game against the Seahawks, the Giants' best individual rushing performance has been an 86-yard effort by Ahmad Bradshaw against the Eagles two weeks ago.

Chris Snee, the Giants' best offensive lineman, sounds as though he's had enough.

"We just have to get it going, period," Snee said. "I'm tired of seeing 80 yards a game average and three yards a carry. So it's got to be fixed."

Bradshaw and Brandon Jacobs are averaging a combined 86 yards rushing per game this year. While the two running backs have a total of four rushing touchdowns, the Giants need more out of their running game.

It hasn't been particularly pleasing for head coach Tom Coughlin to see his running game stall while the defense has surrendered big chunks of yardage in the past two games.

The Giants are allowing 116.5 yards per game on the ground after the Eagles and Cardinals rushed for a total of 177 and 156 against them, respectively.

A better Giants rushing attack would help the defense, allowing the team to keep the ball away from opposing offenses better. So far, Seattle is allowing 105 yards rushing per game.

[+] EnlargeAhmad Bradshaw
Christian Petersen/Getty ImagesAhmad Bradshaw and the Giants' run game have scuffled this year.

"We're not doing our job," Snee said. "There's been not as many missed assignments as of late, which is a good thing. But now it's just technique or just not winning the battle one-on-one."

The Giants may have to establish the run against Seattle without Baas. The center did not practice on Wednesday due to a neck/burner injury he aggravated on Sunday in the Giants' win over Arizona.

On Tuesday, the Giants signed backup center Jim Cordle off the practice squad in a possible indication that Baas may not play this week.

Jacobs missed practice on Wednesday due to swelling in his knee but Tom Coughlin said Jacobs is day-to-day and is expected to practice on Thursday.

But if Baas is out, Kevin Boothe will likely get the start. He replaced Baas in the second half against Arizona.

"I'm prepared regardless of the situation," Boothe said. "Dave is a smart guy, he knows the offense in and out already, he knew it in the preseason. I'm ready for whatever role that Coach decides."

"We have had more than enough time to practice," Boothe added. "Everybody is on the same page. We just have to be consistent."

Consistently opening up holes also takes a certain attitude. The Giants want to bring a nasty demeanor back to the running game.

"You want to have that dominance on a field that you are wearing a defense down when you are running the ball, when you are getting four to five yards a carry and they are bringing eight, nine up in the box trying to stop that," Beatty said. "So it is an attitude that you want to have each game."

Snee said that the Giants' rushing struggles are not due to the team's decision to revamp the line at the start of camp.

"There's no excuses," Snee said. "We're not going to say that's the reason why the running game isn't going. It's just we're not getting it going. It's on us."

"[Offensive coordinator Kevin] Gilbride's doing a great job with the play calling," Snee added. "I know sometimes he takes a lot of heat. But he's dialing up the run. We're just not doing it. We're not getting it done."

Ohm Youngmisuk has covered the Giants, Jets and the NFL since 2006. Prior to that, he covered the Nets, Knicks and the NBA for nearly a decade. He joined ESPNNewYork.com after working at the New York Daily News for almost 12 years and is a graduate of Michigan State University.
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