How well Ereck Flowers makes the transition from left to right tackle will be one of the determining factors in the overall performance of the New York Giants’ revamped offensive line. Hal Hunter, the team’s offensive line coach, said Saturday that Flowers has had a “great attitude” since finally joining the team after skipping the early portion of voluntary workouts in the spring.
“When you don’t have to worry about a guy’s attitude, then you just coach. He’s been very responsive,” Hunter said.
Flowers, always noticeably uncomfortable when speaking to a group of reporters, said Saturday that right tackle is “cool” and learning it has “been great.”
“Whenever they need me to do, I’m going to do,” he said. “It’s been great, I love playing next to Pat [Omameh] and I’m ready for the season.”
Hunter has been pleased with how “engaged” Flowers has been.
“He has his weight under control, right where you want it to be, strong in the weight room, in good condition. It’s been hot outside, he doesn’t bat an eye. He goes and goes and goes,” Hunter said. “He’s been great in the meeting room, a little bit of the Socratic method in there, so we’re watching tape this morning and I’ll fire a question to this guy, fire a question to that guy, I fired two questions at him today and he had the answers, one, two, engaged in the meeting, that shows a lot.”
Hunter was working for the Indianapolis Colts in 2015 and said Indy would have drafted Flowers had he still been on the board for them in Round 1.
“We interviewed him at the combine, he had a great interview,” Hunter said. “We picked too far down in the draft, we didn’t get a chance but we would have picked him.”
Better attitude or not, Flowers carries technique issues from left to right tackle. He has to retrain his body to do everything the opposite way he did it for the past several years AND clean up his technical flaws.
“When you’re trying to coach any player, like anything we’ve ever done, sometimes you have to erase that tape to start with a blank tape, so we’re working on things and he’s making good progress,” Hunter said. “There’s a lot of technical things to work on, run and pass, and everything is completely opposite at the right tackle position than the left.”
Flowers has been far from perfect in camp. Saturday, he was cleanly beaten by Kareem Martin on a pass rush. Flowers was speaking about the line as a whole when he said the group needs “time and reps.” He could easily have been talking about his move from left to right.
“You kind of have to switch everything, your muscle memory, a lot of different things. It’s going pretty well, though. I have gotten a lot better at it since I first started,” Flowers said. “It’s different footwork, it’s different everything. There’s different ways of looking at silent counts, everything is a little bit different.”
It will also be different if the Giants actually have two quality offensive tackles this season. Flowers’ progress will likely determine whether or not that happens.