During the New York Giants’ preseason game against the Indianapolis Colts this past Sunday, offensive lineman David Baas limped off the field in what was later determined to be an injury to his MCL. There is no definitive timetable for Baas’ return, but it can be an injury that keeps him out of some regular season games in the early part of the season.
Now, it has been revealed that veteran offensive lineman David Diehl had surgery on his thumb and he will not be able to play for six weeks. This injury is sure to keep him out of at least the first three games of the regular season, which is not welcome news for an aging group.
The injuries to Baas and Diehl will probably force the Giants to go with offensive linemen Jim Cordle and rookie Justin Pugh. Pugh was the team’s first-round draft pick, so if he is as advertised, he should have the ability to step in right away and perform at a high level. Versatile offensive lineman Kevin Boothe can make the switch to center as well, which was expected after the injury to Baas. However, the injury to Diehl puts Boothe right back at left guard.
The Giants have gotten young, talented players in the past several years in the draft. However, the Giants have not drafted a valuable offensive lineman since 2009, when they used their second-round pick on Will Beatty out of the University of Connecticut. The Giants are hoping Pugh isn’t another in a line of draft picks at the position that have not panned out.
For quarterback Eli Manning to have a bounce-back season, the Giants will need to keep him upright. The play of Cordle and Pugh as replacements will be critical in the start the Giants get off to, whether it’ll be a good start or a bad start. The Giants will pray that Baas comes back sooner than later at the very least.