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New York Giants’ Justin Pugh Anxious to Learn from Big Blue Veterans

May 20th, 2013 at 3:03 PM
By Paul Tierney

The New York Giants desperately needed a right tackle in the 2013 NFL Draft. With veteran David Diehl on the down side of his career and uncertainty surrounding James Brewer's talent, the team drafted someone to come in and compete immediately for a starting position along the offensive line. With first-round pick Justin Pugh out of Syracuse, the Giants have exactly that, a guy who will be relied upon to protect quarterback Eli Manning for the foreseeable future.

However, Pugh's status as a first-round selection has placed a giant bulls eye on his back, as teammate Chris Snee has already insinuated that the rookie should be ready to spoil his new teammates throughout Big Blue's 2013 campaign.

"I did get a credit card," Pugh said. "I am ready."

Rookie hazing aside, the Giants are going to need Pugh to step up and plug the void the team currently has at right tackle. A year ago, a combination of Diehl and Sean Locklear were able to adequately compensate for the loss of veteran Kareem McKenzie. But with Locklear gone and another year of tread on Diehl's tires, the Giants can not afford to take any chances with Eli Manning's health. Pugh may or may not be ready for week one, but at some point during 2013, the Giants are going to call his number.

Regardless, for now, Pugh says he is still learning the bare essentials of what it truly means to play in the NFL.

"I think for me, the biggest thing I can learn is how to be a professional," Pugh said regarding one of the most pressing pieces of advice he'll seek from his teammates. "How to prepare, how to study–all of those little things that go into taking my game to the next level and contributing to the New York Giants."

Luckily for the Giants, the team possesses one of the best offensive line coaches around in Pat Flaherty. Through all of the unit's deficiencies last season, the Giants still only gave up a sack on 3.58 percent of Eli Manning's passing attempts, which the best ratio in the league. With Pugh now on the roster and the combination of Brewer, Cordle and McCants and Mosely still waiting in the wings, the Giants will have a much deeper and experienced offensive line in 2013.

Pugh will also benefit from the wealth of veteran experience that still remains on the roster. In particular, Diehl, who is likely to lose his job to Pugh as some point this season, has already made it clear that he plans to help the rookie transition to the NFL in anyway possible.

"Yeah, [Diehl] actually texted me when I was drafted and said congratulations and any way he can help out," Pugh said. "He is an 11-year tackle and he has been in the biggest games and won the biggest games."


Tags: 2013 NFL Draft, Chris Snee, David Diehl, Eli Manning, Football, James Brewer, Justin Pugh, Kareem McKenzie, New York, New York Giants, NFL, Pat Flaherty, Sean Locklear, Syracuse

4 Responses to “New York Giants’ Justin Pugh Anxious to Learn from Big Blue Veterans”

  1.  norm says:

    Knock knock.
    Who’s there?
    Justin, why?
    Why what?
    Justin, why ain’t you using the damn doorbell?
    I can’t reach it.

  2.  GOAT56 says:


    GIANTT says:
    May 20, 2013 at 1:34 PM
    I dont give a fig what these so-called “experts ” do to earn their paycheck , its irrelevant .If someone came up and said Eli was an average QB in the league and he got lucky on a couple of throws in the Super Bowls , who cares ? The Giants won end of story

    In the meantime , supposedly the Giants had an interest in this kid released by the Iggles – Miguel Maysonet – is there any room to bring him in to take a look ?

    •  GOAT56 says:

      I thought the same thing. He would seem to have more promise as a RB than Wright. But Wright’s value might be as a KR. I was suprised we drafted Cox over Maysonet because it seemed we liked Maysonet but that shows me that we are high on Cox. Maysonet is someone I rather look at than Hightower though.

  3.  GOAT56 says:

    I don’t have an issue with Eli being ranked #5. But Norm has valid points against Brees. I was never a Brady guy but the post SB years actually have earned my respect much more than the SB years. You can’t discount how brilliant Peyton has been in the regular season. Rodgers is a natural talent I can’t deny and I give points like Brady and Eli for doing it out doors and bad weather. The only issue with Rodgers is he’s very rarely pulled a game out of the fire like other great QBs. None of these QBs is perfeect but neither is Eli. After 5 years of ascending play last year Eli had a down year. Eli is also less consistent than the other great QBs sans Brees. Eli reminds me in some ways of Reggie Miller. Because on average he isn’t as good as a lot of the greats in his sport but in big games and big moments he’s been as good as anyone.

    Given Eli plays in NY, while other QBs could be better and more consistent I take Eli’s ability to handle the pressure and come up big when absolutely needed.

    Also, I think there’s something the Matt Ryan is missing. I know most won’t agree but give me Flacco. Flacco to me in many ways is like Eli because he’s inconsistent. But I believe Flacco’s ability to step up and be great is very much like Eli’s. Even there first SBs runs are similar. Ryan is like Rivers and Flacco like Eli.

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