Justin Pugh: Bash all of us, not just Ereck Flowers

Getty Images

The Giants’ decision to stand pat on the offensive line this offseason was questioned by many outside observers and the reason why was on display against the Lions on Monday night.

Pass rushers flowed through the Giants line without much resistance, leading to five sacks and a dysfunctional offense that has given the team little chance to win either of its first two games. Three of those sacks came from Lions defensive end Ziggy Ansah, who battered left tackle Ereck Flowers all night.

Flowers has long been a focal point for criticism of the Giants offensive line and things will only get worse after Monday night even with one of his teammates stepping up in an attempt to deflect some of the blame. Justin Pugh didn’t try to do the impossible and say Flowers played well, but he did say that he wasn’t the only one to play poorly and shouldn’t bear the entire loss on his back.

“In the NFL, it’s tough to play tackle. I can tell you that firsthand,” Pugh said, via Newsday. “Playing tackle in the NFL is very, very hard. Everyone wants to come and take shots at Ereck, and that’s trying to kick somebody when they’re down. He knows he didn’t do what he was supposed to do tonight. He’s 23 years old going out there and trying to do everything he can. …It hurts me to see one of my teammates and someone I, like, try to help out, to see him get beat up like that. I didn’t play great. Go put my film on. It’s five guys. We can help him out. We can do a better job. We can run the ball better. When it comes to offensive line plays, it’s all five of us, it’s not one person. So if you are going to come and bash us, don’t bash one guy.”

Pugh’s not wrong about everyone deserving blame, but left tackles stand out on offensive lines the same way quarterbacks stand out on offenses. Flowers’ fitness for the left tackle spot has been debated since the Giants picked him in the first round of the 2015 draft and, 23 or not, the evidence that he’s not fit for the job has become impossible to ignore for anyone who isn’t Giants General Manager Jerry Reese.

That’s left Flowers as the only choice to fill the role on the roster and the Giants suffered for it against the Lions.

36 responses to “Justin Pugh: Bash all of us, not just Ereck Flowers

  1. He won’t have to face Ansah every week though. And quite frankly, the Giants were having some success with their 3 step drops. Play caller needs to recognize the limitations he is working with and scheme to get the ball out a little quicker. Lions were playing with a left tackle off the scrap heap in Greg Robinson with Taylor Decker hurt and yea it hurt them a bit. This is the NFL you don’t have an all pro at every position.

  2. Stubbornness on the part of Jerry Reese, who can’t admit his top draft pick is a bust. To not address the O-line after last season’s offensive struggles is a fireable offense in my book. What’s the point of adding Engram and Marshall if no running game and no time to throw?

  3. My focus is more on Ziggy Ansah. He’s still learning how to play football, and when he’s healthy he’s already one of the best I’ve ever seen at that position. There’s just no way the Giants’ coaches should have left a Flowers one on one with him.

  4. Maybe Ereck can use $100 bills to wipe away the tears caused by hurtful comments about his play last night.

    Bottom line is you don’t get paid a king’s ransom to get worked like that.

  5. Flowers is hot garbage – absolutely worst technique I’ve ever seen. Ever. Bad coaching, and bad talent. And McA-don’t can’t have someone chip the DE until the 3rd quarter? You can’t fix stupid.

  6. Offensive line play in the NFL is awful. It looks like some of these guys have never played the position before landing in the league.

  7. Its sad to see supposed “football people” get paid millions to put these rosters together and ignore the most fundamental issue. If you can’t keep the QB on his feet you won’t win. The game starts with the Oline, not the QB.

    A mediocre QB can play well and get wins behind a good Oline. The opposite is not true even if you have a great QB, if you put him behind a lousy Oline its hard to get wins.

  8. The Eagles didn’t look great overall last week, but their d-line got to Alex Smith several times through a much better offensive line.
    Fletcher Cox, Timmy Jernigan and Brandon Graham should be extra excited to get at the Giants this week. If they sacked Smith 4 times, they should crush Eli. I can’t wait for Sunday.

  9. I wish this was the bye week – and they would move flowers to RT, and plug in Pugh at LT. It concerns me that on this offensive line, Fluker isn’t starting (even at guard).

    Reese has made some good draft picks, but also has made significant misses, especially after the first round. The fact alone that he allowed this to be the offensive line for this season, demonstrates his incompetence in his role.

    Giants need to line up with a blocking tight end next to Flowers on every down. Eli can’t help this team if he can’t go through his progressions. Dumping off to running backs (especially these runnings backs) isn’t going to win a lot of games.

  10. It looks like Flowers has zero confidence in his own ability to play tackle. Ansah threw him around like a rag doll, but if you don’t have any confidence in your own ability, then your done.

  11. But l thought their $100 million plus spree on defense was going to solve all their problems. Right?

    Flowers is atrocious, Eli is well past his prime, and all the team drama couldn’t happen to a nicer guy in Mara.

    Like Dan Snyder has proven repeatedly, you can’t buy your way to a Lombardi

  12. harrisonhits2 says:
    September 19, 2017 at 8:12 am
    Its sad to see supposed “football people” get paid millions to put these rosters together and ignore the most fundamental issue. If you can’t keep the QB on his feet you won’t win. The game starts with the Oline, not the QB.

    A mediocre QB can play well and get wins behind a good Oline. The opposite is not true even if you have a great QB, if you put him behind a lousy Oline its hard to get wins.

    1 0 Rate This

    ———–

    Reese and Mara have been busy reading their press clippings from 2011. Same problem happening in NOs with Mickey Loomis.

    SMH

  13. charliecharger says:
    September 19, 2017 at 7:29 am
    My focus is more on Ziggy Ansah. He’s still learning how to play football, and when he’s healthy he’s already one of the best I’ve ever seen at that position. There’s just no way the Giants’ coaches should have left a Flowers one on one with him.

    28 4 Rate This

    ———-

    What?

    Ansah has been a serious disappointment as a top 10 pick in the draft years ago. That’s how bad Flowers is.

  14. What?

    Ansah has been a serious disappointment as a top 10 pick in the draft years ago. That’s how bad Flowers is

    —————————————–

    Do you even football bro?

  15. Does anybody ever see the GIANTS offensive line coach ? I could not tell you his name or what he looks like !

  16. In his rookie campaign Flowers was far from perfect as he fought through an injury. However, he had a distinct mean streak and he won many battles. Now he plays like a drunken ballerina with his feet tied together. His footwork was epically poor with odd lunges and jumps. At one point he tried to pass block while looking directly at the ground. Watching him reminds me of when Chuck Knoblauch was impacted by the yips and could not throw the ball from second to first – it’s so uncomfortable to even look at on the TV.

  17. I think most of us will stick with bashing Reese. How on Earth could any NFL GM not named Rick Smith or Mickey Loomis stand pat on that O-line? Eli could sue for lack of support and win. The only logical conclusion is Reese has a massive life insurance policy on Eli.

  18. All teams make some errors in the Draft. It is now clear to everyone that Flowers is a bust. However, the bigger failure is by the GM and coaches in not admitting it and not addressing the problem. This team is going nowhere until they fix their O-line.

  19. Brandon Marshall: “I wouldn’t have made it through an entire season knowing that we didn’t have a chance (with the Jets).”

    Jermaine Kearse has more catches, yards, and TDs than Marshall, ODB, and Perkins combined !

    Just saying…

  20. topcide says:
    September 19, 2017 at 9:42 am
    What?

    Ansah has been a serious disappointment as a top 10 pick in the draft years ago. That’s how bad Flowers is

    —————————————–

    Do you even football bro?

    9 3 Rate This

    ———–

    Is that English?

    I am assuming you’re questioning why the Lions AWFUL D in recent years, with a top 10 draft pick named Ansah on it, somehow could be considered a disappointment lacking quality all-around play and development.

    Yep. I just checked again. Ansah has been part of a perennially BAD Detroit defense. That’s a fact.

    Former Pats scout, Bob Quinn, has done a nice job the last 2 years, acquiring quality talent to help Ansah, though. So, let’s see if getting him some help, clearly not worthy of a top 10 draft pick, is the thing that helps Ansah improve his run defense on the edge.

    If you draft someone in the top 10 and they’re not a Pro Bowler by year 2, you’re not that good.

    Sorry.

    Playing that position is not just about sacks.

    “Stats are for losers.” – Bill Belichick

    I’ve seen Ansah play, and fundamentally, his terrible vs the run. I would be incensed if someone like a Richard Seymoure, the #7 overall pick in 2001, only played his position halfway.

    Have a nice day!

    Do you watch football, or just look at stats, little guy?

  21. jsrdc says:
    September 19, 2017 at 9:20 am
    But l thought their $100 million plus spree on defense was going to solve all their problems. Right?

    Flowers is atrocious, Eli is well past his prime, and all the team drama couldn’t happen to a nicer guy in Mara.

    Like Dan Snyder has proven repeatedly, you can’t buy your way to a Lombardi

    12 2 Rate This

    ————–

    Correct. Here is who Reese overpaid for in FA the last few years:

    Vereen, Casillas, Jenkins, Harrison, vernon, Brandon Marshall.

    When you overpay across the board AND buy up 3 of the most expensive guys at once in FA (Vernon, Harrison, Jenkins), that’s a sign you’re covering for bad drafts like the Jets.

    Couldn’t happen to a more cheating (Mara) franchise.

    Deflategate and Spygate karma cheating for Mara AND now Ezekiel Elliott cheating.

  22. tylawspick6 says:
    September 19, 2017 at 10:25 am

    first- Dost thou even hoist brethern?

    According to you Ziggy has been a “serious disappointment.”

    With the exception of his injury riddled 2016, basically everyone involved in football has a different analysis than you do

  23. I see that the New York Nightmaras have figured out that Eli Apple can’t play QB so why not use him as a pass rusher? Maybe Flowers could be used as a full back – he can’t block so you have to put him somewhere where he won’t need to.

  24. They better fix something quick. It won’t get any easier. Going to Philly, on Monday night, for their home opener. While they are very weak at the CB spot, that front 7 gets after the QB. If they don’t figure out something quick, we could be seeing Geno Smith under center. Eli isn’t as young as he used to be, he’s not going to be able to keep taking shots the way he has in the first 2 weeks

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!