The New York Giants knew offensive tackle James Brewer was going to be a project when they selected him in the fourth round of the 2011 NFL Draft. However, three years later Brewer has yet to develop into the player the Giants were hoping. That doesn’t mean he won’t be able to contribute this season and with injuries to center David Baas and guard/tackle David Diehl he will get plenty of chances to prove he belongs on the line.
Last preseason, Brewer was asked to play some left tackle. Now, this preseason, Brewer is going to be asked to fill in at left guard beginning tomorrow night in the preseason finale against the New England Patriots. Brewer will be replacing Kevin Boothe who is sliding over to center to fill in for Baas. It will be the first time in Brewer’s career that he has played left guard.
The offensive line is in a state of flux at the moment. Rookie Justin Pugh is slated to be the starting right tackle, a position he might end up keeping if he plays well enough. Diehl’s health has become a major concern for the Giants and at this stage Diehl might be better suited for a backup role or moving to the inside.
The Giants needed help along the offensive line this off-season and the only real addressing that was done was drafting Pugh hence the shifting of Brewer to guard. Even though Brewer has experience at tackle he will still need time to adjust to the new position. Popular opinion is moving to guard is an easier transition than vice versa. However, Brewer is playing the position for the first time in his career and it will likely take some time for him to adjust. The Giants had better hope he is a quick learner because he will be helping to protect Eli Manning’s blind side and even though he is only playing a few snaps tomorrow it only takes one hit to completely alter the Giants season.
Brewer is a talented player. He just hasn’t had much of a chance to show what he can do. Perhaps moving inside to guard will be a game changer for him and the Giants. With Chris Snee already contemplating retirement and injuries to David Diehl and David Baas the Giants will need help along the interior and perhaps Brewer can use his size, 6-foot-6, 330 pounds, to become a monster on the inside. You never know, perhaps the move to guard will allow Brewer to revive his struggling NFL career.