David Diehl is the Big Blue’s incumbent starting Left Tackle. He was named to the 2009 Pro Bowl for the first time in his career and the year before was named to the 2008 AP All- NFL Second Team. Diehl was also recently on MTV’s afternoon gameshow Silent Library and came off as completely insane. The kind of guy that you want on your offensive line. All this being said, Diehl is currently locked in a position battle with second year NFL player William Beatty.
There’s no question that the Giants’ running game wasn’t the same last season. The Giants linemen took a lot of pride in setting the record for most consecutive games played as a cohesive offensive line. For more than four seasons’ worth of games, the same five lineman lined up next to each other through bruised bones, barking backs, and corroding knees. Did the injury sacrifices to chase that streak hurt them in the long run? It definitely seemed to catch up to them exponentially last season, where they more than made up for the previous years’ with a rash of long overdue injuries.
David Diehl is 29 and a lynch pin of that consecutive streak offensive line. But have all those injuries caught up with him? The Giants hope that William Beatty is the future left tackle. Drafted last season with the 60th overall pick in the second round out of UConn, Beatty had to be hurried into duty in 15 games, starting 3, because of the aforementioned rash of injuries. With a full year under his belt, will he be ready to take over from the accoladed vet? Beatty is both shorter and less stocky than Diehl and comes with a higher pedigree. But pedigree has never mattered to Diehl.
He’s a fighter. A 5th round draft pick who started every game in his rookie year… at right guard. The next season, Diehl started every game again… at right tackle. His third season, Diehl started 1 game at right tackle and the other 15 at left tackle. Perhaps the Giants are eying this versatility as a chance to move Diehl to another position on the line, allowing the future left tackle to take his role this season? Beatty definetly outperformed expectations last season when called upon, and few would question he is much more athletic than Diehl, which would come in handy against teams with ferocious pass rushers on that side like the Cowboys and DeMarcus Ware.
It seems the Giants want Beatty to take over for Diehl, which opens up more interesting position battles along the line.