Will Beatty may very well be the New York Giants‘ most important player on offense. Now with an entire offensive line that is beat up, he is even more crucial. Not only that, but Beatty is going up against one of the best defensive ends in the league: DeMarcus Ware.
Ware has seven straight seasons with over 10 sacks, a truly impressive feat for an NFL player. Until J.J. Watt took the league by storm last year, he was considered by many to be the best defensive player in the game. Ware excels are getting to the quarterback because of his ability to use his speed or his power. While he is not an especially technical player, he can dominate because he can go right by tackles or right through them.
The one thing going for Beatty is that the Cowboys have just switched over to a 4-3 defense from a 3-4, moving Ware from outside linebacker to defensive lineman. While Ware’s primary job in both systems is to get at the quarterback, each has its own special nuances that make it hard.
Linebackers have to be able to drop in coverage and move well laterally to make plays against the run. Defensive ends are responsible for multiple gaps, meaning they have to make plays on either side of the offensive lineman blocking them.
In Ware’s old position, he was only responsible for plays to the outside gap. This transition would be hard on anyone, but may be especially hard on Ware, who is smaller than most defensive ends. He may have trouble against inside runs, which might be a place the Giants will try to attack.
Still, Beatty will have his hands full. The matchup between Ware and Beatty will be fascinating to watch for serious fans, but the casual viewers’ eyes will always be on the quarterback. Just know this: if you are watching Eli Manning and he always seems to have time, Beatty is having a great game. If not, well, then Ware is just having his usual dominant game.