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Giants 90-man roster breakdown: OG Geoff Schwartz aiming to earn his money in 2015

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Schwartz had a lost season in 2014 due to injuries.

Geoff Schwartz being carted off the field during the 2014 preseason.
Geoff Schwartz being carted off the field during the 2014 preseason.
Rich Schultz/Getty Images

After an injury-plagued first season with the New York Giants, veteran offensive lineman Geoff Schwartz is being counted on to help stabilize a re-configured offensive line that has already suffered a major blow with the torn pectoral muscle suffered by starting left tackle Will Beatty.

Let's look at Schwartz as we continue our player-by-player profiles of the 90-man roster the Giants will bring to training camp in just two weeks.

2014 Season in Review

We got to know a lot about Schwartz in 2014. We got to know that he is incredibly media friendly. We got to know that he is terrific on social media. We got to know that he has a dog named Oslo Pepperoni who has his own Twitter account. We know he loves to spend time with his young son. We know he loves to cook. We know what he looks like riding off the MetLife Stadium field in a cart.

What we don't know is the thing that is really important. That, of course, is what kind of football player he can be for the Giants. Schwartz suffered a disclocated toe in the preseason against the New York Jets and spent the first half of the season on IR designated to return. When he did return to the lineup, out of position at right tackle due to other injuries, he played less than six quarters, broke his ankle and went back on IR.

2015 Season Outlook

Schwartz is a smart guy and after stops with the Carolina Panthers, Minnesota Vikings and Kansas City Chiefs since entering the league in 2009 he knows exactly how the NFL works. He knows that nice $16.8 million four-year contract with $5.7 million guaranteed won't mean anything if he doesn't earn his money by helping the Giants in 2015. He certainly never had the opportunity to do that in 2014.

"If I don't play this year things aren't looking very good for me," an honest Schwartz said when asked about the importance of 2015. "I signed that big contract last year and I didn't really live up to it the first year. I was hurt and there was nothing I could do about that.

"I really want to play and earn that contract and show what I can do being part of a winning team. We've got a great team, our offense is clicking right now for this time of the year. I just want to be part of that and help us win."

Schwartz should be back at his comfortable right guard slot this season. That is where he has had the most success in his career, but even when healthy he never played that spot a year ago. He started out at left guard and stayed there even after Chris Snee retired. when he returned, Justin Pugh was hurt and Schwartz had to fill in at right tackle. Then, he got hurt and never got a chance to move inside.

During the spring, Schwartz played exclusively at right guard while splitting first-team reps with John Jerry as he continues to work his way back from the broken ankle.

"It's nice to be back there. It's basically where I've played my entire career," Schwartz said.

Toward the end of mini-camp, Schwartz was trying to increase his reps and said the ankle was "getting there."

It's a matter of getting comfortable again and being able to do powerful things repetitively," Schwartz said. "It's only been six months.

"I'm told I'm right where I'm supposed to be, I'm probably a little ahead of schedule. Feels good to at least get some reps in now however rusty they are so that when we come back for camp I've at least done it.

A year after struggling mightily to run the ball, the Giants hope a revamped interior of their offensive line with Schwartz at right guard, Weston Richburg at center and Justin Pugh at left guard can help solve that issue.

Schwartz, when healthy, has a reputation as a road-grading run blocker. If he can stay healthy, he figures to earn his money clearing space for Giants running backs as well as protecting Eli Manning. The Giants are counting on it.