New York Giants: 9 notable position battles worth watching
By Henry Buggy
#1 – Right Tackle
This should come as no surprise. The right side of the offensive line is arguably the biggest question mark for the Giants ahead of the 2018 season.
Right guard and right tackle both make this list, but the battle for the starting right tackle position is a clear two-man race. Ereck Flowers is considered the favorite to earn the starting role, but Chad Wheeler also showed some promise in his rookie season.
The undrafted free agent out of USC was a far better run blocker than Flowers in 2017. But he was also a liability in pass protection, according to Pro Football Focus.
Wheeler started five games in his rookie season. He struggled against some of the league’s top pass rushers. Then again, so has Flowers through his first three seasons.
The Giants do have a third option in undrafted free agent Tyler Howell, but he’s unlikely to be in the mix for Big Blue’s starting right tackle position.
Gettleman elected not to pick up Flowers’ fifth-year option on his rookie contract this offseason. That means he is entering a contract year this upcoming season.
The 6-foot-6, 329-pound offensive tackle has not lived up to his first-round selection. Flowers has proven himself durable, starting 46 games through three seasons. But the Giants will need more than durability at right tackle.
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It could come down to improved play. Flowers has shown minimal growth since entering the league in 2015. But he is still probably the more well-rounded option to start at right tackle.
That will also depend on Wheeler’s development in year two.
The Giants may have significantly improved their offensive line this offseason, but the play of either Flowers or Wheeler at right tackle may be the determining factor in the unit’s overall success.