Friday night we got our first look at the 2015 New York Giants, and it wasn't very pretty. There were a few bright spots, like the play of Jay Bromley, Damontre Moore, Olreans Darkwa, Akeem Hunt's electric speed, and Trevin Wade flashing in a depleted secondary.
The play of the starting offense and defense was a different matter entirely. On the offensive side, struggles along the offensive line rippled throughout the offense, causing blood pressure spikes in fans and coaches alike.
Their feelings are well founded. The entire starting offensive line struggled, each player having his own poor plays or mistakes. The left side of the line will likely remain unchanged going forward, but there will be a shake up at the top of the depth chart on the right side of the line.
The first part of the potential shake-up is expected, but still welcome news: Geoff Schwartz has returned to practice, replacing John Jerry at right guard. Schwartz also saw time at right tackle Sunday when Marshall Newhouse left practice early due to the heat.
The second part of the change on the right side of the line will depend on how the coaches view the play of Newhouse at right tackle.
The gap between Newhouse and Brandon Mosley appears to have closed Friday night. While Newhouse appeared to struggle as the starting right tackle, losing ground in pass protection and failing to generate movement in the run game, Mosley played well with the second string.
Though he was beaten around the edge once in pass protection, Mosley was otherwise solid at both guard and tackle. His run blocking was impressive, helping to pave the way for Darkwa's performance.
The question now becomes whether or not Mosley showed enough for the coaches to give him an opportunity to work with the starters heading into the second week of preseason.
Further complicating the battle at the right tackle spot is Geoff Schwartz. When Marshall Newhouse had to leave practice early due to overheatimg it was Schwartz, not Mosley, who stepped in at right tackle, with John Jerry taking the first team reps at right guard.
The undercard of the camp battle features several intriguing battles. The first is between centers Dallas Reynolds and Candadian import Brett Jones.
Reynolds took the lion's share of the back-up center snaps against the Bengals, with Jones only getting 11 snaps at the end of the game. The disparity between them might give some indication as to how the coaches view the two players.
At the guard positions, Eric Herman is battling with Adam Gettis, Michael Bamiro, and rookie Bobby Hart. None of them will threaten to unseat Geoff Schwartz. Technically the four young players are in competition with John Jerry as well, but if any of them will have to show that they are not only Jerry's superior in run blocking -- an admittedly low bar -- but also at least as dependable in pass protection. That second one is quite a bit harder as Jerry is a very solid pass protector.
As of now Gettis seems to be in the lead for that backup guard spot, though Bamiro has earned praise from the coaches and Hart's ability to play right tackle could be a factor as well. Though Herman has power in spades, he struggles with his footwork.
While most eyes will likely to be on the injury-riddled secondary, we might begin to get some answers on the status of the various camp battles along the offensive line as practice resumes this week.