A lot of people are very anxious to see what Justin Pugh can do for the New York Giants on the offensive line this season, especially considering he was the team's first-round draft pick out of the University of Syracuse back in the 2013 NFL Draft this past April.
Originally brought into camp to compete for the starting right tackle spot and challenge long-time veteran David Diehl, Pugh's progress was side-tracked almost two weeks ago when he suffered a concussion and was sidelined for about 10 days, giving Diehl a leg up on the competition for that final spot.
Pugh missed the team's first preseason game this past Saturday against the Pittsburgh Steelers at Heinz Field, but he returned to practice for the Giants on Monday and is expected to play for the team this coming Sunday when they play in their second preseason game of the summer against the Indianapolis Colts.
With the game against the Colts the first live action he'll see against opposing competition in the NFL, and with Pugh's family traveling from Holland, Pennsylvania, a suburb outside of Philadelphia, to come see him play in New Jersey; something he told Dave Hutchinson of the Newark-Star Ledger that he's extremely excited for on Sunday.
“It’s huge,” he said of getting a taste of his first live action. “To get out there and play against real live competition will be good. You can do things (in a live game) you can’t do on the practice field. Getting those reps are going to be crucial.”
One of the many eager parties who want to see Pugh on the field for the Giants is one of the main guys who was a part of selecting him back in April's NFL Draft is Giants head coach Tom Coughlin, who wants to see how his rookie fares against the Colts.
"He's athletic. He's done a lot of good things," Coughlin said. "I'm anxious to see him play against somebody else and then evaluate how he does."
This past week in practice, the Giants have been using Pugh as the team's backup left tackle and grooming him to be their swing tackle who can play at both left and right tackle on the team. He also played at guard at Syracuse and could eventually be shifted to guard in the future if needed.
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