Giants Swipe Ex-Starter From NFC East Rival After Additional OL Injury

Wes Martin

Getty The Giants signed former Washington Football Team OG Wes Martin in the wake of starting LG Ben Bredeson's hand injury.

With Week 4 of the 2021 NFL regular season rapidly approaching, the New York Giants have already endured a slew of major injuries throughout the early portion of the year.

The Giants lost linebacker Blake Martinez (torn ACL), left guard Shane Lemieux (torn patellar tendon in knee) and center Nick Gates (lower leg fracture) for the season before the calendar flipped forward to October.

Wide receivers Sterling Shepard and Darius Slayton also exited last week’s 17-14 loss to the Atlanta Falcons with hamstring issues as well. Their timeline and status are currently unknown moving forward.

Now, left guard Ben Bredeson, who has stepped in as a starter along the offensive line due to the losses of Lemieux and Gates, is dealing with a hand injury that could keep him out of the Giants-Saints game this Sunday on October 3, per ESPN’s Jordan Raanan.

As a result, the Giants signed guard Wes Martin off the Washington Football Team’s practice squad as insurance. If Bredeson can’t go this week, the Giants will be forced to start their fourth left guard in four games due to a barrage of injuries.

The Giants acquired Bredeson from the Baltimore Ravens via trade back in August. This deal came in the wake of veteran offensive linemen Joe Looney and Zach Fulton abruptly retiring during training camp, which left the Giants’ line depth razor thin.

Unfortunately, their depth issues have only gotten worse in the past three weeks, and now, they are once again scrambling to put another patch on a glaring hole.

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Experienced Stopgap

With the Giants bringing in Wes Martin from Washington, they are getting a lineman who has some experience as a starter in his young career.

Washington drafted Martin in the fourth-round of the 2019 NFL draft. He proceeded to start five games at right guard as a rookie, before starting the first five games of the 2020 regular season at left guard for Washington.

While Martin will likely be utilized as a stopgap, on the bright side, he has seen action in 25 games since entering the league in ’19.


Skura Time?

Although it’d be an unfair expectation to anticipate Martin starting in place of Bredeson this week, this predicament could pave the way for another experienced interior lineman in Matt Skura.

The Giants signed Skura to their practice squad prior to the start of the regular season, before adding him to the active roster on September 16.

Skura spent the last four seasons as a starter on the Baltimore Ravens’ offensive line. The 2016 undrafted free agent received his first shot to fill in at right guard in his second season in the NFL, after Marshall Yanda suffered a season-ending ankle injury.

From there, Skura became the Ravens’ center in 2018, before going down with a knee injury the following year in Week 12, thus ending his 2019 campaign. Last season, Skura bounced back to start 12 games and appear in 15 for Baltimore. However, it was clear that he lost a step since his knee issue, which led to the team’s decision to let him walk in free agency during the offseason.

Skura signed a one-year deal with the Miami Dolphins, but was released on August 30 at the end of training camp.

Now, Skura could get another shot at redemption to prove he is still a capable starter in this league. And this scenario would be more than ideal for a Giants’ team that can’t catch a break with injuries so far through the 2021 regular season.

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