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Mailbag: Offensive line schemes, progress on injuries


Russ in New York: I am unfamiliar with the new coaching staff and the systems they prefer. Particularly the offensive line. Do you have any insight as to if the Giants will use a power gap system or a zone blocking system?

John Schmeelk: Buffalo (where Brian Daboll and offensive line coach Bobby Johnson came from) ran a mix of different run schemes last year according to PFF. For example, the Bills ran just as much "pull-lead" gap scheme as they did inside zone last season. Both were their second-most frequently used run schemes. Their most common run play was outside zone. Kansas city, where Mike Kafka was pass game coordinator, primarily used a zone scheme (with a focus on outside zone).

John in South Carolina: Who is the salary cap guru on the new staff? And who is the strength and conditioning coach?

John Schmeelk: Kevin Abrams was retained as the Senior Vice President of Football Operations and Strategy and will help Joe Schoen manage the cap. Schoen, of course, will have ultimate control managing the cap as he sees fit. Abrams has been with the Giants organization for more than two decades in various roles. Craig Fitzgerald was retained as the team's Director of Strength and Conditioning. Before joining the Giants coaching staff in 2020, he was the Director of Sports Performance at the University of Tennessee.

Edward in New Jersey: Nick Gates and Blake Martinez were important starters before each was injured early last season. What is their status, and are they likely to be important members of the 2022 team?

John Schmeelk: Both players are still in the recovery and rehabilitation stages from very serious injuries. You may not see either player back on the field until the summer. Gates, given the severe nature of his injury, has a lot more of complicated recovery process than Martinez.


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