To most of us, NYG's offensive line weakness is not just old news, it's non-news. You could probably argue that the blame for the line's inadequacies deserves to be passed around. There are certainly several culprits. But as the play-by-play analysis of Wednesday's game trickles in one name stands out dramatically: David Diehl. The Giant's Gab blog has the play-by-play of the second quarter here. It's a must-read for anyone trying to understand what happened offensively during the season opener. This is the comment from the first full play of the second quarter:
"Eli sacked far back. They blitzed and the offensive line was like a sieve. The guy blew by Diehl who didn’t even get a finger on him. This game is getting hard to watch Diehl play, he’s that bad. He has not yet made one block of anybody during this game."
It doesn't get any better. I've read on this forum and other sites that many people have noticed Diehl's game flagging. But reading through Giants Gab's breakdown makes it clear just how bad the situation is. Here's another quote:
"Eli in shotgun, complete collapse of the offensive blocking and a sack. Diehl whiffs again and Bradshaw was out of position to help. Deihl has single handedly allowed the Cowboys to beat the Giants with his poor play."
Big Daddy's (the post's author) could be accused of hyperbole with that last sentence, but I'm not sure it is. With the NYG's receivers and Eli behind center, if the offensive line can give him enough time there is almost no way (aside from drops) this team doesn't move the sticks and score nearly at-will. They are just too talented.
We've all heard the axiom 'a chain is only as strong as its weakest link' and I think it's becoming clear who that weak link is. It's a real shame because I, like most of you, have always liked Diehl as a person and a leader. But this isn't a popularity contest. If David's game has *truly* fallen as far as this report indicates (read: this wasn't some fluke or there is no unknown injury), a change must be made immediately. Or in Big Daddy's words:
"...it pains me to say this but David Diehl is the worst right tackle in the NFL. He cannot move and has no functional strength to take on any defender. In my opinion ANY legitimate NFL right tackle would be an upgrade. I have never seen such a poor performance from an offensive tackle in my 50 years of watching football. The only other time was an Eagles game where Osi ate up a guy for like 6 sacks. Diehl is just as bad not only in pass protection but he was the cause of some runs going nowhere. He blocked no one. It was agonizing to sit at my PC and watch his play. If he is there next game for the Giants it could only mean that the Giants could not find anybody off waivers or a free agent and/or Brewer and Beatty are not healthy yet. There has to be someone out there sitting home waiting for a call, please Reese find someone, anyone."
I'm waiting for other sites to give their play-by-play comments to determine how seriously to take this reaction, but if it is accurate (as I suspect it is) it will be extremely interesting to see what Coughlin does in this next week. Unfortunately, knowing Tom like we do, it's hard to imagine him making a radical change. Maybe I'm wrong?
What do you guys think?
**Alternate title for this post: A Loss to Dallas - NYG Gets a ****ty Deihl.
Kill me, I'm sorry.
Again, big props to Giants Gab, here is the link to the 2nd Q breakdown: