NY Giants rookie left tackle Andrew Thomas has gone through significant growing pains, but OL coach Marc Colombo remains optimistic
The NY Giants aren’t ready to throw in the towel on No. 4 overall pick Andrew Thomas.
The struggling rookie left tackle has already surrendered an astonishingly high 37 pressures, six sacks, and four quarterback hits through his first seven games, according to Pro Football Focus.
Still, NY Giants offensive line coach Marc Colombo believes Thomas can turn a corner, and quickly.
“We’re looking to see his good practices translate to games,” Colombo said. “That’s part of my job to simplify it, and make it easy for him so he goes out into these games and he thinks less. You don’t want a young guy thinking too much. He’s a smart guy and wants to get everything right. We need him to go out, do what he’s taught, what he’s learning in practice, and he’s fighting to get it right in games.”
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Thomas, despite his sudden monumental struggles in pass-protection, has flashed moments where he looks like a road grading run-blocker. Colombo hopes to see more of that.
“The consistency is the biggest deal,” Colombo said. “Early on, it was the consistency of the whole entire group. Now, it’s kind of consistency of a couple individuals, and it’s usually the young guys, and we have to get a little more out of him and take it into games.
“We see it in spurts, but we have to see it consistency. He’s ready for the challenge. I expect some good games coming here from Andrew.”
It has been a rough go for Thomas, lining up opposite some of the NFL’s premier pass rushers in his first seven games, such as the Pittsburgh Steelers’ T.J. Watt and Bud Dupree, the Chicago Bears’ Khalil Mack, the Cowboys’ Demarcus Lawrence, and now a daunting challenge against a Tamp Bay Buccaneers front-seven on Monday night that includes Jason Pierre-Paul, Devin White, and Shaq Barrett.
Thomas was also benched for the start of the NY Giants’ Week 5 game against the Washington Football Team because he was late for a meeting, and has seen fellow rookie Matt Peart rotate in for snaps at times.
Colombo’s goal is to get Thomas on the road to consistency, will help him when needed with a blocking tight end or chipping running back, but ultimately needs to see more from the prized rookie.
“We try to give help where help’s needed,” Colombo explained. “We have schemes to do that, usually based on pass rushers, these guys create a tremendous challenge up front and that will be built in on certain plays.
“But, there will be plays where we have to block him one-on-one. It’s your job to block a defensive end in the NFL one-on-one. That’s why he’s here. That’s why he’s going to hang around for a long time. You have to block that guy.”
Matt Lombardo is the site expert for GMenHQ, and writes Between The Hash Marks each Wednesday for FanSided. Follow Matt on Twitter: @MattLombardoNFL.