It appears as though the Giants will have a different starting right tackle than initially expected when the regular season kicks off on September 12.
According to their website’s unofficial depth chart, Nate Solder is currently penciled in as the starting right tackle over Matt Peart.
This comes as a bit of a surprise, as the 2020 third-round draft pick was expected to take over the reigns on the right side, after the departure of Cam Fleming. The job was basically Peart’s to lose, but after he endured a rough preseason, the Giants are leaning towards going with a more experienced option in Solder.
Following a disastrous 2019 campaign, the Giants are hoping that Solder can bounce-back. Solder signed a monstrous four-year, $62 million deal to be the Giants’ left tackle in 2018. But he has had a nightmarish tenure in East Rutherford since he was brought over in free agency.
The Giants had high hopes for Peart, who will have to fight his way back into the mix after a disappointing summer. Peart showed promise in his first season as a Giant, but it is evident that he has fallen out of favor with the coaching staff after a rough camp.
As for Solder, he hasn’t played right tackle since his rookie year in 2011. Solder had been banged up in his first two seasons with the Giants, but after opting out last year due to Covid concerns, his body should be rejuvenated in 2021.
Solder took a $7 million pay cut to stay with the Giants this year. And now, it seems as though he has beaten out Peart, albeit the team could still rotate at the position, as they did last season.
Over the course of the past nine seasons, offensive line has been an area of weakness for the New York Giants. And so far, it is looking like this pattern won’t change after a shaky preseason from this unit.
Projected starting left guard Shane Lemieux has a partially torn patellar tendon in his knee, which he is going to try to play through. And Peart looks to have lost his job before Week 1.
Last year’s first-round pick in left tackle Andrew Thomas has struggled immensely as well, which is a major concern. Thomas had a rough first-half to his rookie campaign, but recovered for a solid second act of the season.
However, Thomas has looked less than ideal in preseason action, allowing two sacks in the finale against the Patriots. Thomas’ technique has been ugly, which is something the Giants must clean up, especially with the tough upcoming task of facing the Broncos’ fierce defensive line looming in Week 1.
Unofficial Depth Chart
While there weren’t many additional surprises on the Giants’ unofficial depth chart beyond Solder being ahead of Peart, the next biggest shock was at the outside linebacker position.
Third-year edge rusher Oshane Ximines, who is coming off season-ending shoulder surgery, is slated to start over rookie Azeez Ojulari.
Ojulari was selected No. 50 overall out of Georgia in the second-round of the 2021 draft and had a strong first training camp and preseason showing this summer.
The expectation is that Ojulari will play a significant role on what should be a strong Giants defense this season.
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