Ereck Flowers won’t get a chance to tape over his first three years in the NFL. Instead, the New York Giants offensive tackle is going to get a chance to erase it.
Much has been written about Flowers, the Giants first-round pick three years ago who has struggled to live up to a moderate level of success, let alone the hype of being a top-10 pick in the NFL Draft. Yet with a new head coach in Pat Shurmur and the addition of Nate Solder as the team’s starting left tackle, Flowers is going to get a shot not just to re-write the first three years of struggles.
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Instead under new offensive line coach Hal Hunter, there will be the opportunity to change the narrative entirely.
“Until you actually get your hands on somebody and work with them. Nobody is a real blank slate. He’s had a high school coach, he’s had a college coach, I believe he’s had two coaches here since he’s been here at the Giants. So, everybody has different ways, so sometimes you have to erase the tape,” Hunter said on Wednesday. “Sometimes you can’t just re-record over it. So, it’ll take some time to get him doing some things that we want him to do then, but I know both his offensive line coaches that he’s had in the past. I’ve known them for a long time and they were very experienced, very highly thought of coaches in this league. And I know things that they teach are fundamentally sound.”
Hunter spoke at the Giants team facility on a day when the team made a number of the new hires on Shurmur’s coaching staff available to the media.
In all likelihood, Flowers will move from right tackle to left tackle, a move that in theory should take some pressure off of him. As a rookie in 2015, he was shifted from the right side to the blindside when injuries necessitated the move.
Flowers struggled his first two years in the league although he admittedly showed improvement last year in both pass protection and his run blocking. Perhaps another step forward is possible under Hunter, a long-time offensive line coach who said he’s talked with the young tackle several times on the phone already this offseason.
“Yeah, the left side or the right side, I don’t think the assignments are that tough. It might not be quite as hard, but it would be like, I golf right-handed, if all of a sudden I have to golf left-handed, it’s going to be awhile. He’s been playing left tackle for a long time,” Hunter said.
“He’s been playing it in college and I remember we had a pre-draft visit with him, I met him at the Combine a few years ago. Good, solid left tackle. So, the footwork is going to be different. Everything is going to be just the opposite and he’s a good enough athlete that he’s going to be able to adjust to all of that, but it’s like anything. You’re writing and all of a sudden you guys all have to write left-handed. You can do it, but it takes some time to adjust. So, there has to be a patience on the learning curve. Like again, the better the athlete, the easier the transition and he is a good athlete.”