Are the Giants Taking a Big Risk After Not Adding to Offensive Line in Free Agency?

The Giants didn't really add to their offensive line in free agency, and are thought to be planning to do so via the draft. But how much of a risk is involved in this strategy given what's at stake with Daniel Jones and the offense, both of whom need to turn the corner from last year?
Publish date:

The New York Giants' free-agency spending spree touched nearly every position group on the team except for the most important one. Are they playing with fire in having taken this approach?

On the surface, it certainly would appear as such, especially after they decided to cut veteran guard Kevin Zeitler and not retain tackle Cameron Fleming, last year's starters on the right side.

But Giants general manager Dave Gettleman, who from Day 1 of his tenure vowed to fix the offensive line, believes that while veterans serve a purpose, the way to build the offensive line for the long-term is via the draft. This process, of course, means putting young, inexperienced players on the field to gain valuable experience.  

"At some point in time, you’ve got to let the young kids play," Gettleman said last month. "Listen, every player was a rookie at some point or a young player at some point. At some point in time, you have to have confidence in who’s on your club and you have to put him in there and let him play."


While he's not wrong, the risk the Giants are taking is in the timing. Starting quarterback Daniel Jones is entering his third season, a critical season. While the organization is confident he's their franchise quarterback of the future, he was still a part of the league's second-to-last worst offense in 2020 and, as such, has a few remaining questions he needs to answer on the field.

The Giants, to be fair here, have approached rebuilding the offense in a somewhat backward fashion. Rather than ensure they had a solid offensive line in place for Jones's arrival, they have built it on the fly. Last year at times, the unit played well; at others, not so much so.

But the Giants, who have hired Rob Sale to coach the unit as well as Pat Flaherty (a senior offensive assistant who groomed the Giants' offensive line under Tom Coughlin) in addition to returning assistant offensive line coach Ben Wilkerson, are confident that they can get the unit on the right track.

Check out the video above in which former NFL and college head coach Jim Mora Jr offered his thoughts about the Giants' offensive line plan, and whether they were taking a significant risk.  

What's next for the Giants this off-season? Sign up for our FREE newsletter for all the latest, and be sure to follow and like us on Facebook.

Submit your questions for our mailbag. And don't forget to check out the daily LockedOn Giants podcast, also available for subscription wherever you find podcasts.