The New York Giants drafted Andrew Thomas fourth overall in the 2020 NFL draft. His rookie season was filled with ups and downs as he slowly got used to life in the NFL. According to PFF, Thomas gave up the most sacks in the NFL with 10.
However, most of those came in the first half of the season, and in the second half, he was one of the best offensive tackles. That would carry over into the just four games he has played in this season.
Due to injury, Thomas missed Week 5, but when he played in Week 6 got injured against. Now there is hope he could come back against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Andrew Thomas coming back may not turn around this season, but he has played well, and it has affected the whole offense when he has played.
Things sound a lot more optimistic for Andrew Thomas than they did just 24 hours ago. Good news. Giants really need him back on the field.
— TheGiantsWire (@TheGiantsWire) November 18, 2021
Andrew Thomas’s growth this season
So far this season, Andrew Thomas has not yet allowed a sack with a 70.3 grade on PFF in just his four complete games. On top of that, multiple players on the Giants offensive line have gone down this season, including Nick Gates and Shane Lemieux having season-ending injuries.
The Giants’ coaching staff has needed to scramble to bring players in to fill gaps on an already weak offensive line. Before even the season started, it was unclear who would be the starting right tackle, but the one thing Giants fans knew was that Thomas would be starting and playing well at left tackle.
Thomas’s absence has almost shaken up the whole offense, forcing Jason Garrett to call plays to protect his young quarterback from his weak offensive line. This has led to a lot of short passes and rollouts by Daniel Jones.
The offense was already predictable and basic, but now it has become even more predictable that Jones has to roll out every time to throw it three yards down the field. Thomas allows Jones to have some protection when he steps back to at least give him three seconds to make a read and throw it.
The Andrew Thomas effect on Daniel Jones
If you have been on Giants Twitter recently, this crazy stat circling around about Daniel Jones and Andrew Thomas. When Thomas is starting at left tackle this season, Jones’s yard per game is 285.2, and when Thomas has been out, it has been 158.25.
Daniel Jones passing YPG with Andrew Thomas: 285.2
Daniel Jones passing YPG without Andrew Thomas: 158.25
— Giants Nation (@NYG_Nation10) November 18, 2021
That is insane that one sophomore offensive lineman can have almost a 130 passing yard impact on the game. Thomas has become such a crucial piece of the offense in just such a short time. Even though the Giants added all these offensive weapons this offseason, Thomas still has the most significant impact.
Another crazy stat to prove how important Thomas is is Jones’s yard per attempt stat. Jones went from having every game go over seven yards per passing attempt in all the games that Thomas was healthy in to not even getting close to seven but one week. Without Thomas, the Giants’ down felid attack just went away.
Hopefully, Andrew Thomas can play this week, and maybe it can bring some life to the Giants’ mediocre offense. If he can, perhaps the Giants can try to make another late-season push for a playoff spot.
Photo: GMenHQ/Mike Stobe/Getty Images