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New York Giants’ Tom Coughlin “OK” with David Diehl at Right Tackle

November 6th, 2012 at 1:00 PM
By Paul Tierney

'David Diehl' photo (c) 2006, Alexa - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/ The New York Giants played some of their worst football of the season this past Sunday. That's not to say this is a bad football team or there is something inherently wrong with their style of play. However, Big Blue stunk up the joint last weekend. There were several players on the roster who did not do their jobs. One of those players was starting right tackle David Diehl.

Diehl has been a lightning rod of discussion through the offseason and into Big Blue's 2012 campaign. Although the statistics say Diehl was the absolute worst pass blocking offensive tackle in the NFL last season, many of Diehl's staunch supporters, Giants coaching staff included, insist that the film does not tell the same story. However, there is no defending Diehl's performance this past weekend. Even head coach Tom Coughlin did not give Diehl a ringing endorsement.

"He did O.K.," Coughlin said. "He had the one false start that hurt."

It took Diehl just 54 snaps to give up his first sack since coming off of injury. Granted he had not seen extended playing time in several weeks, but Diehl was blown off the line with consistency against the Pittsburgh Steelers defense. He was unable to effectively engage his defender at the point of attack and inhibited the play of the Giants offense.

However, the issue with David Diehl is not that he's playing bad. Obviously, his poor play is disconcerting, but it would not be as big of an issue if there were not a better option on the roster. Sean Locklear took over at right tackle after Diehl went down with a minor knee injury and the offensive line play improved drastically. In fact, heading into Sunday's matchup, the Giants had given up the least amount of sacks in the NFL. In particular, Locklear has not given up a sack in his previous 542 snaps.

David Diehl's pedigree is unquestionably sufficient to place him among the better Giants offensive linemen to ever step on the field. He is a former All-Pro and a two-time Super Bowl champion. In fact, his illustrious accomplishments are the only thing between him starting at right tackle and sitting on the bench at this point of the season. Giants offensive line coach Pat Flaherty is on record as saying such.

However, Diehl's play has been in consistent decline for years now. The Giants are in the process of trying to repeat as Super Bowl champions, and it's not going to happen unless the team puts the best 11 football players out on the field each and every Sunday. Replacing Diehl at right tackle in no way guarantee any future success, but it would help the Giants run their offense with more efficiency then we have seen in past weeks. It's time for Tom Coughlin and Co. to put Diehl's ego aside and do what's best for this football team.

Also…

Tags: David Diehl, Football, New York, New York Giants, NFL, Pat Flaherty, Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh Steelers, Sean Locklear, Super Bowl, Tom Coughlin

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38 Responses to “New York Giants’ Tom Coughlin “OK” with David Diehl at Right Tackle”

  1.  ERICHONIUS says:

    @FF55
    on Manningham vs Randle: Randle is a rookie, wow he has had difficulty making reads… Manningham was a 4 year vet and still was consistently making the wrong reads.

    Manningham as a rookie had 4 receptions for 26 yards (6.5 avg)…
    Randle as a rookie has 9 receptions for 156 yards (17.1 avg)…
    Manningham this year has 28 receptions for 278 yards (9.9 avg)…

    •  Krow says:

      Manningham’s big catches won us the NFC Championship and the Superbowl.

      •  ERICHONIUS says:

        and Reuben Randle has not even had a chance to play in the playoffs. My point is holding Randle to a 4 year veteran receiver and saying that he isn’t an improvement is asinine.

    •  fanfor55years says:

      So you think Randle is better than Manningham, right now? What I said yesterday was that it would be great to have Mario right now and those who were quick to say “who needs him?” were dead wrong given Nicks’ injuries.

      I just used Manningham’s rookie reputation to show that Randle has reasons for not having been all that effective in reading coverage. I think Randle is going to be an excellent receiver, but it won’t be until late this season, if then.

      By the way, a big part of Randle’s stats (and I couldn’t care less about football stats) is based upon one big play. And Manningham was most certainly NOT “consistently making the wrong reads”. He made them occasionally. So, btw, do Cruz and Nicks. I was defending Randle’s inabilities in that area and also suggesting Manningham gets a bad rap. Your comment proves my point. Thanks.

  2.  F0XLIN says:

    We all know the Danny Clark PFF saga but they are accurate more often than not

    PFF on DD

    Off the Edge

    The best pass rusher on the field was outside linebacker Lamarr Woodley, who had his way with Giants right tackle David Diehl. Woodley did his best work in the fourth quarter as he beat Diehl off the edge for two hurries before making one of the biggest plays of the game with 3:45 to go. With the Giants down four, and a national TV audience all but expecting more magic from Eli Manning, Woodley beat Diehl off the edge once again, this time knocking the ball from Manning’s hands to force a fumble. Though the Giants fell on the loose ball, it turned out to be their last offensive play of the day as Woodley put a damper on any late-game heroics.

    On 15 rushes by Woodley he had 4 pressures and a strip sack, that is not ok…

    •  kinsho says:

      Definitely not, but the game was lost on more than just Diehl’s inability to control his spot at the line of scrimmage. The loss was a team effort.

  3.  fanfor55years says:

    I just don’t get it at this point. I understood not giving away his job based on a minor injury. But seeing him play that way and STILL doing nothing? Blind allegiance, and totally unjustified. Something is rotten in Denmark.

    •  kinsho says:

      Normally, you wait until you start seeing a consistently poor performance from a player across at least two games before you decide to bench him.

      Unless, of course, the player in question is a promising young rookie first-round draft pick. One mistake and his as5 is in the DOGHOUSE!

  4.  giantsfan says:

    Any have any news on Canty? I heard he was injured from the game.

  5.  wvchirodoc says:

    I understand that a starter shouldnt loose his job to an injury but come the F#CK on, from the get go Eli didnt have nearly enough time to make his reads, that affected his entire game. I m dumbfounded as to why Deihl was inserted into the starting lineup. Im no scout and I m sure Locklear had some issues but he is head and shoulders above DD when pass blocking. Why mess with something that was working??? I hope it gets resolved this week and the coaches come to their senses. If not, this slump Eli is in may look better than him laying in a hospital bed after getting crushed by someone DD wiffed on.

  6.  norm says:

    Here’s the thing: Sean Locklear is no great shakes himself.

    He’s a journeyman NFL OT who was kicked to the curb by two mediocre franchises, Seattle and Washington.

    He’s the very definition of a “place holder”; a player you hope the organization will attempt to upgrade at the earliest possible opportunity.

    That the play of David Diehl now has Giants fans clamoring for the return of the resolutely average Sean Locklear is, perhaps, the most damning testament to the utter awfulness that is #66.

  7.  JimStoll says:

    I’ve seen a bunch of posts to the effect that should we win sunday against Cincy we all but have the division wrapped.
    While I thik sunday is critical, I would caution everyone from thinking its in the bag
    based on how we have played to date, the best we will finish is 10-6, and 9-7 is very very likely
    that means that at least 1 of the other 3 has the ability to catch us
    Dallas is the most likely since 4 of their last 8 are against Philly and Washington
    sweep those and they are 7-5; after that they have the browns bengals saints and steelers
    so if they get their act together 10-6 or 9-7 is quite possible; at 9-7 with a split with us, they could take the division based on a better division record (4-0 to 2-2)
    now this assumes the cowboys sweep the eagles and skins; and the same argument could be made for the other two, and all of it may be highly improbable, but the giants may well play to a 9-7 finish, especially if they lose to Cincy; so it ain’t over yet

    •  Krow says:

      Absolutely. Cincy is an important game.

    •  norm says:

      A 10-6 record will win the division.

      If the Giants beat Cincy, they reach that mark by playing .500 ball the rest of the way.

      The 3-6 Skins and the loser of Sunday’s Dallas-Philly tilt will have to run the table to reach that mark. Neither will happen.

      The 4-5 winner of Dallas/Philly will have to finish 6-1. That will almost certainly entail running the table in their remaining 3-4 divisional games. That’s not likely to happen either.

      In the event of a win over the Bengals, only an epic collapse by the Giants will prevent them from winning the division.

    •  fanfor55years says:

      The likelihood of any of the Cowboys, Eagles or Redskins sweeping the others is close to nil. Each of those teams is so flawed that there’s almost no way they can keep it together for a half of a season.

      Nothing is “clinched” until it’s clinched. But if we win on Sunday catching us in the division becomes a monumental task that seems out of reach of any of the teams chasing us given the rifts within those locker rooms and franchises.

    •  kinsho says:

      With the Giants being the Giants, the division is NEVER wrapped until it becomes mathematically impossible for the other three teams to catch up to us.

      •  norm says:

        As I noted, it would take an epic collapse by the Giants (if they beat Cincy) paired with a heroic second half run by the winner of Sunday’s Dallas-Philly game.

        Sure, it’s mathematically possible. But the likelihood of it actually happening is very, very small.

  8.  Krow says:

    I’ve brought this up before … but the ‘Brewer Project’ must not be succeeding or I suspect we’d have seen the boy on the field by now. Especially given the quality of play at ROT.

    •  fanfor55years says:

      I’m not so sure. Remember, he was a “project” when they drafted him. Quick feet + size but clueless as to technique. It would not be at all surprising if it takes a full two years of learning under Flaherty for him to have a real chance to do much.

      But he almost certainly will be given the chance to win the job next June. I’m sure that’s what they were hoping for and boy, do we need it. I suspect that Mosley was figured to be in the mix as well, but his injury may have derailed that plan and he probably needs a few more years before he can challenge for a spot. McCants is another project but Saban vouched for him and that means something. I think he may turn out to be the real “comer” among those young guys.

    •  norm says:

      It should be noted that for his first two years here, Will Beatty contributed almost nothing.

      It was only in his third year (2011) that he was comfortable enough in the system to win a starting job.

      Brewer has only been here for a year and half. I don’t think it’s unreasonable to grant him the same two-year gestation period that was accorded to Beatty before we start jumping to conclusions about his future.

    •  jfunk says:

      I don’t think your logic jives with this team.

      If they’re steadfastly sticking to Diehl over Locklear, I don’t think a failure to play Brewer can be used as an indictment of his ability.

  9.  wvchirodoc says:

    I agree, but at the same time I dont think you can discount what Locklear was doing as the starter. 250 some plays without allowing a sack, he may be a journeyman but he was playing like a pretty good tackle. DD comes in and yeah, the first sack occured on him 50 plays in but the pressure on Eli was evident immediatly.

    •  kinsho says:

      Indeed. Locklear needs to be given his just due here. He’s been playing pretty well despite having been a journeyman for most of his career.

      •  TonyMW says:

        With all due respect to Locklear, he was giving up TONS of pressure. The sacks allowed may not be there, but make no mistake, he was getting abused in his own right. With that said, he’s immensely more qualified than Diehl for holding down the RT spot at this time.

  10.  Apexer says:

    I have followed this team for a long time. I have questioned Eli (proved me wrong) I have questioned Reese (proved m wrong) I have questioned Couglin (proved me wrong). I have questioned countless things about this team over the last 30+ years. I have made arguments in the past that so and so should be playing instead of so in so but never in my life do I recall a time that it was so blantanly obvious that a player should be playing over another than Locklear over Diehl. I just can’t imagine what the coaches are seeing on tape that justifies the decision. Even if Locklear is missing asignments that we don’t know about at least he seem somewhat capable of completing the assignments which it is obvious Diehl is not. I like Diehl. He has been an excellent Giant and 100% team buy but he can’t get the job done anymore no matter how much anybody likes him. You can make arguments about Brown or Wilson over Bradshaw or Brown over Phillips vise versa but all of those guys do some good things…..Diehls spot is completly obviously bench warmer and I don’t know what else to say about it and it is the first time I can say without a doubt that the coaching staff seems unwilling to fied the best 22 players and that is dishearting

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