There are a wide variety of opinions on the Giants’ offensive line floating out there. Some believe the unit is aging and falling apart at the seems. Others think that the unit, while towards the end of its prime, can still pass protect with the best of them. I’m somewhere in the middle.
The guard play of Chris Snee and Rich Seubert has never come into question, but with Seubert injured, the Giants will have to figure out who is going to start left of center until the time when/if Seubert is healthy enough to return. The best healthy guard on the roster besides Snee is David Diehl, who has been playing out of position at left tackle for a number of years.
Diehl has been up and down the last couple of years, and at times has been a liability in pass protection. He would benefit from a move back to guard, but that would create another gaping hole protecting Eli Manning’s blindside. Kareem McKenzie has aged gracefully and is still a strong option at right tackle, when he is not dealing with his own injuries.
Who is holding down the center position is also a major concern: Shaun O’Hara has fallen off a cliff the past couple of seasons and may never be the same. Seuberts did a nice job in the middle, but, of course, he may never be the same after his injury. Adam Koets did a solid job filling in, but - stop me if you’ve heard this one – he too has injuries to deal with.
There is some intriguing depth, but even bigger questions. Is William Beatty ready to take over as the full time left tackle? Can Shawn Andrews stay healthy for long enough to be a factor? Where do youngsters Mitch Petrus and James Brewer fit in?
The optimist in me thinks that the Giants’ coaches can succeed in cobbling together a sufficient line for the 2011 season, much like they did in 2010. The pessimist in me thinks that the line will be a disaster unless a legitimate left tackle emerges from the group or is added via free agency. The truth is probably somewhere in the middle.