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Film Study: How did Giants’ OT Matt Peart really play vs. Washington?

NFL: OCT 04 Giants at Rams Photo by Jevone Moore/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The New York Giants started Matt Peart, a 2020 third-round selection out of UConn, over Andrew Thomas Sundayt against Washington. The fourth overall pick in 2020 was benched because he was late for a meeting on Saturday night. Thomas ended up playing 22 of the 48 offensive snaps, and Peart played 26.

Thomas has looked sloppy in 2020, and still leads the league in pressures allowed by a pretty substantial margin. Both tackles looked solid against Washington, which was also a byproduct of a very conservative offensive game plan that only had Jones pass 19 times. The game gave us a glimpse at Peart’s skill set on the left side, and I came away impressed. My impression of Peart before the game was mostly accurate: smooth feet, long arms, good sets, and solid positioning; however, he was much more skilled in terms of run blocking, holding the point of attack, positioning his hips between the defender and the hole, and he was adroit with where, and how, he used his hands to win.

(Matt Peart is No. 74)

Run blocking

Peart executes a very good combo/scoop block against a talented 3-Technique in Jonathan Allen (93). This is a key block, and it requires lateral agility, balance, and hip mobility, combined with strength, to scoop a player like Allen. Will Hernandez (71) chips and climbs to assist Peart, and stop Allen’s momentum. The transition between Hernandez and Peart looks smooth and effortless. Hernandez climbs to Cole Holcomb (55) while Peart gets to Allen’s inside shoulder and positions himself in an advantageous manner. Peart gets his inside arm inside of the breast-plate of Allen and does a good job controlling the point of attack.

This is another combo/scoop block from Peart on the backside of the run. The transition between Hernandez and Peart isn’t as clean, but Peart gets that inside hand in good position once Hernandez climbs. Peart keeps his feet moving, but can’t get to the inside shoulder of Allen who flows with the play. I do like how Peart is able to generate some power/push after Hernandez transitions; Peart’s hips are just about uncoiled when Hernandez climbs, yet he’s still able to utilize power, but his positioning isn’t ideal. Those types of blocks are not easy to execute.

Montez Sweat (90) is just outside Peart and he slants inside at the snap. Peart does a good job adjusting his blocking assignment and giving Freeman a chance to bounce the run to the C-Gap (5-Hole). Freeman does a good job forcing a missed tackle from the blitzing cornerback. Initially, Peart gets to the outside shoulder of Sweat and hand fights through Sweat’s counters with his inside arm to establish positioning. Sweat eventually disengages, but Freeman is already 7 yards past the line of scrimmage.

On the zone-read, Peart gets his inside arm underneath the inside shoulder pad of Sweat. He does a solid job positioning himself, and continually fights through the play with Sweat. It’s a backside block, but it’s a well executed block. I like to see how Peart is winning with hand positioning and leverage in each of these clips; at least one of his hands is in a controllable position against a good competitor. Nick Gates (65) has to do a better job establishing himself at the second level against Jonathan Bostic (53).

This is another backside block where Peart doesn’t allow Sweat to disengage, and Peart also hand-fights for position with his outside arm. This is an adequate rep by Peart. There’s not a lot of push at the point of attack. Sweat does a good job locking out, establishing position, and restricting space. Hernandez is solid with his chip and climb, but Gates loses to Allen on the line of scrimmage, and Bostic does a good job shooting the A-Gap to blow the play up.

New York runs a “zone-read” with two pullers towards Peart’s side. Peart is uncovered on the play and is allowed to climb to the second level. We have heard a lot about Peart’s athletic ability, and it was on display here. He utilized very good angles and location skills to close width on Bostic. Then he takes his outside arm, acquires Bostic’s chest, turns him, and then drives him out of the play. Peart looks very natural moving and locating.

Pass blocking

Peart wasn’t forced into many vertical sets or tough positions while pass blocking. The Giants used a lot of quick game, and Peart only pass blocked 11 times against Washington. He does a solid job here of moving up the arc, and cutting off the angle of Ryan Anderson (52). Peart gets to the top, and doesn’t allow the linebacker to corner. Peart didn’t have a huge punch in college, nor did he really showcase that on Sunday, but he glides smoothly. His length is very important as well, especially if he does get beat around the edge; his athletic ability and length should be enough to compensate for speed rushers when beat through a rep.

Peart loses the leverage battle to Sweat, who does a good job initiating contact and moving Peart backwards. The third-round pick re-sinks his hips to give him more anchor, and despite being pushed back a bit, he holds up and allows Jones to throw the football. Sweat tried to run through the outside shoulder of Peart, but the young tackle was able to hold Sweat’s rush back.

Here’s a quick block against a 4i-technique. Peart gets his hands inside quickly and easily withstands the power rush from the Football Team’s player.

Peart almost loses this rep entirely to Sweat who wins the edge and turns the corner. Peart doesn’t get enough depth in his set. Sweat uses a good outside arm club to break the grasp of Peart, but the young tackle only capitulated slightly, which is huge for this play. If Sweat’s club was totally effective, then this play probably isn’t a touchdown, but Peart does just enough to withstand the rush around the edge, which allowed Jones to throw the touchdown to Slayton. Not the best play for Peart, but it got the job done. Jones throws a beautiful pass to Slayton for the score. Also, Dion Lewis (33) does an excellent job, once again, in blitz pick up to also give Jones the time to complete this touchdown.

Final thoughts

Peart did well in his first extended play in the National Football League. I want to see a bit more of him in pass sets vs. NFL talent. He pass blocked 11 times, but a lot of those were built off play action, where he double teamed 3-techniques to sell the run, or off of quick game concepts that had him block for less than 2 seconds. As a run blocker, I thought Peart exceeded my expectations. He’s not perfect, but there’s a ton to work with here. I won’t be shocked to see Peart earn more and more snaps, before eventually earning a starting tackle spot; which begs the question ... will Peart be a long-term fixture on the right or left side?