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Dave Gettleman, Joe Judge explain selection of OT Matt Peart

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Giants excited about upside of a player they say isn’t “tapped out”

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: OCT 05 USF at UConn
Matt Peart

After selecting offensive tackle Andrew Thomas No. 4 overall in the 2020 NFL Draft on Thursday night, New York Giants GM Dave Gettleman said the organization was aiming “to fix this offensive line once and for all.”

The Giants proved how serious they are about that endeavor by selecting another offensive tackle with their third-round pick, 99th overall.

Why did the Giants choose Matt Peart of UConn?

“He’s athletic and he’s long. We just think he’s got a lot of upside,” Gettleman said. “He’s a guy that the coaching staff really wanted to work with.”

There was a common school of thought that the Giants, if they added another offensive lineman, would look to add a center at this spot. However, centers Matt Hennessy (Temple) went 78th to the Atlanta Falcons and Lloyd Cushenberry (LSU) went 83rd to the Denver Broncos.

“It’s about value,” Gettleman said. “He was too good a value to pass by. Plain and simple we had him rated well above the other centers on our board.”

The Giants are likely to enter the season with Thomas starting at one tackle and veteran Nate Solder at the other. They will, however, likely need a replacement for Solder after the upcoming season. Peart, described by Gettleman and coach Joe Judge as a “skinny 6-foot-7, 315-pounder with 36⅝-inch arms (99th percentile) could be that replacement.

“I think he’s got a sizable ceiling,” Gettleman said. “He’s young, he’s really got a lot of talent, and we really like the upside on him.”

Per Judge, Peart will start out in a swing tackle role.

“I don’t want to say he developmental — he’s developing,” Judge said. “I think we’re going to see a lot better football in the future than we’ve seen with him already. That’s what makes us really excited to work with these guys we’re bringing in.”

Judge said Peart isn’t “tapped out.”

“He’s got a skill set, he’s still learning, I think we’ve got the right line coach to go ahead and work with him,” Judge said. “This guy’s got tremendous upside. His athleticism, his physical build and then his character and work ethic. You put those things together and these are guys you really want to work with.”