The clash between offensive tackle Ereck Flowers and rookie defensive end Myles Garrett will be a microcosm of the New York Giants vs. Cleveland Browns NFL preseason betting game.
- Date: Monday, 21st August
- Time: 8:05 PM
- Venue: FirstEnergy Stadium
Sportsbook NFL Preseason Odds:
Giants -1 (-110) 38 (-110) -115
Browns +1 (-110) 38 (-110) -105
Will Flowers bloom or wilt?
All eyes will be on Flowers on Monday. The 9th overall pick in the 2015 draft has been so far like Amorphophallus titanum; the largest flower in the world which only blooms once every 30 to 40 years, and when it does it stinks to high heaven. Hopefully, when and if Ereck does bloom, he will come up smelling like roses. Flowers’s showdown with Garrett will be as good a barometer as any as to where the third-year player is at. Head coach Ben McAdoo praised Flowers’s performance in the Giants preseason loss to the Steelers. “I think he got his hands inside, had a couple nice strikes and punches. I thought he was bending pretty well and I look forward to him taking a jump this week,” McAdoo said. Critics remain unconvinced, though, for example ESPN Staff Writer Jordan Raanan. “Flowers and the left tackle position remain the area of biggest concern for the Giants less than a month before the start of the season,” Raanan writes. “Many of the problems that plagued him his first two seasons (poor hand placement, balance) still exist.”
Going to watch Ereck Flowers closely today. This happened 5 or 6 times yesterday in say 30 snaps. Beat clean. It's becoming problematic. pic.twitter.com/znvijGsjR7
— Jordan Raanan (@JordanRaanan) August 15, 2017
All things considered, the Giants have a great offense (Eli Manning, Odell Beckham Jr., Brandon Marshall, Sterling Shepard, Evan Engram) but that offensive line has failed to be on par, and will continue to fall short unless Flowers lives up to expectations. No pressure, though.
I have promises to keep, and Myles to go before I sleep
Garrett on the other hand already has a history of living to NFL preseason betting expectations, such as being selected as the top overall pick in the 2017 draft. He’s all there physically and mentally. As ESPN’s Pat McManamon writes, Garrett’s “quickness and speed in the pass-rush caused problems, and he’s been surprisingly good against the run.” Additionally, he is “mature beyond his years.” barring any unforeseen event, Garrett will be a welcome source of joy for Cleveland fans for years to come. As ever, it’s the quarterback spot that the Browns have yet to figure out. By way of comparison, Eli Manning – who is expected to play his first NFL preseason betting game tonight – has started 199 straight games at quarterback for the Giants. In the same period, the Browns have started 21 different quarterbacks. Brock Osweiler seems well on his way to starting in week 1 by virtue of being the least worst of the bunch. An underperformance by Osweiler on Monday could open the door for rookie DeShone Kizer. But it would have to be a criminally offensive showing for the Browns to rush Kizer – whom they believe to be far from ready – into a starting spot.