Protect the Quarterback
Easier said than done right?
Anybody knows, in order to have a high-octane offense in the modern-day NFL, a team must have a functioning offensive line. Something that neither New York team has had in years. But finally, this off-season, they looked to change that.
Joe Douglas made it clear protecting quarterback Sam Darnold was his top priority this off-season. Thus, it came as no surprise when the New York Jets brought in center Connor McGovern, right guard Greg Van Roten, and right tackle George Fant in free agency all to start. With their versatility and experience, the team hopes for a drastic improvement this season.
As for the Giants, they did not need to rebuild their entire offensive line. Their main move in free agency – finally moving on from Nate Solder.
Come draft weekend, both teams were extremely active. The Giants picked left tackle Andrew Thomas fourth overall, as well as right tackle Matt Peart in the third-round. Now with a pair of rookie tackles, the team hopes to have found a duo for years to come to protect quarterback Daniel Jones.
Following the Giants lead, the Jets also took a left tackle in round one, with Louisville’s Mekhi Becton. The Jets have pegged Becton as their day one left tackle, and hope that fourth-round pick Cameron Clark can develop and move into the starting lineup as soon as 2021.
Last season, Darnold and Jones combined for 26 games, and yet managed to get sacked 71 times. Injuries led to chemistry issues along the front for both teams, in a year without a pandemic.
Now, as Week 1 is days away, it is up to Gase and Judge to get their lines on the same page. If not, then Darnold and Jones will not play to their potential and spend another year on the ground.