EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – An oft-repeated phrase in the NFL is that a team will go as far as an offensive line can take it.
"I said that and I believe that, I think everything starts at the top," said Giants coach Pat Shurmur today.
Does that mean that the Giants' 1-7 record is primarily the offensive line? Shurmur would not go there today at his press conference. But the team's 20:13 defeat of Washington last season confirmed the long-standing belief that the line did not perform as well as the team needs – and has to do better if the Giants come out of the box with an improvement the second half of the season.
The Giants rushed for just 37 yards and an average of 2.6 yards for a try. Eli Manning was released seven times, and the Redskins were credited with 1
In the months leading up to the 2018 season, the Giants have made the restructuring of the line a top priority. Veteran Free Agents Nate Solder (left tackle) and Patrick Omameh (right guard) were signed, and left guard Will Hernandez was drafted in the second round. Ereck Flowers was moved to the right tackle.
But the optimism surrounding the new line quickly dissolved. Center Jon Halapio broke his ankle in Week 2. Flowers, a former first round poll, was penalized in favor of undefeated runner-up Pro Chad Wheeler and eventually fired. Omemeh lost his job when Spencer Pulley took over the lead last week in Atlanta and John Greco moved to his post.
The new unit is still pending. In the first half of the season, the Giants had an average of only 77.9 yards per game, the second-lowest number of NFL.
"I think we need to get the run game started," Solder said. "There are other things we have to work on, and if we could do that, it would solve a few other problems."
Manning was fired 31 times – as often as in the 15 games he played in 2017 , Only the Cleveland Browns have allowed more sacks (33). San Francisco quarterbacks have also absorbed 31 sacks; The Giants visit the 49ers two weeks before tonight.
"We need to do a better job in all areas, including the front," Shurmur said. "But … I think to do the things you want to do offensively, we have to block them well, all of our units have to play better."
Manning is well on his way 62 times this season to be dismissed. Most he dismissed in his first season were 39 in 2013.
"It's tough, every bag has its own story," Manning said. "Some, it's coverage, or some, that I did not throw away, they all really happen every now and then, they just happen too often, we just have to find ways to be productive, whether you hit the ball fast or more get maximum protection, or just have a combination of the two, or move around in the bag.Just things to get us out of these situations because bags are power killer.They make it hard, and those who are not sacks can pocket We still have to find ways to be productive, we have playmakers, we have to bring the ball to them and have them brought in time and let them play.
"(Yesterday), there was one I say Shurmur said, "Apart from that, there is a combination of things and the quarterback has the ball in his hands, the boys must block up front. There is always a combination. Every now and then a guy is just overrun or beaten, and the quarterback has no chance. But, (it's) a mix of things.
* Wheeler left the game with an ankle injury and was replaced by Brian Mihalik, who was compulsorily enlisted on October 9 and gave his Giants debut.
"It's the same ankle that (Wheeler) Shormur said
* The Giants have 80 points in the first three quarters together and scored 70 points in the fourth quarter
"We have to start earlier "Shurmur said," You do not want to shoot three-pointers at the buzzer. We have to start earlier and score points on the board sooner. We had opportunities again last time, it's not like we could not get down there. We are. We just do not get it for some reason, and the reasons are spread. You can not point to one thing. If we could have pointed to one thing, then that change would have been made a month ago.
"It all depends on how we run the ball down there, the runs have to go forward, not backwards, we have to be better there in the running game, and if we decide to throw it, we have to get more out of those throws get out, whether it's a third drop down that needs to go into the end zone, or a first or second throw that can move the chains or even get to the end zone, we need to get more out, and that's part of what we do (during the reunion week). "