New York Giants: Can Shaun Rogers Make an Impact on the Defense in 2012?

Doug RushSenior Analyst IAugust 8, 2012

On the night of the 2012 NFL Draft, the New York Giants made a surprising signing by adding veteran defensive tackle Shaun Rogers.

It was a surprising move because, at defensive tackle, the Giants already had Chris Canty, Linval Joseph and the recovering Marvin Austin at the position.

Rogers was a Pro Bowl defensive lineman when he played for the Detroit Lions, but when he moved on to the Cleveland Browns, he ran into injury trouble, suffering a broken leg in 2009.

In 2011, Rogers played for the New Orleans Saints, but was used primarily as a backup and wasn't a major impact on their defense.

So, in April, Giants general manager Jerry Reese, who is known for finding talent in all different places, decided to take a low-risk chance on bringing in the 33-year-old veteran.

When he was first signed to the Giants, Rogers apparently weighed near the 400-pound mark. By the time training camp got going, Rogers had dropped around 50 pounds, putting him at the 350-pound mark.

According to Paul Schwartz of the New York Post, Rogers cutting weight and getting into playing shape really impressed Giants head coach Tom Coughlin because it showed how serious and focused he was on making the team.

Giants defensive line coach Robert Nunn said that with the way Rogers has been performing at practice, he feels that Rogers will be able to help the Giants on Sundays.

That's a pretty bold statement from a coach to talk about a player coming out of the first week of training camp and fighting for a job in 2012.

If Rogers can play similar to the level he did when he was with Detroit, then the Giants got an utter steal of a free agent.

The Giants defensive line is a strength as it is, especially with the defensive ends. So, if Rogers can create havoc up the middle, it will allow the rest of the defense to get to the ball quicker.

So far, Rogers has done a terrific job in getting down in weight and into playing shape. If he can get into Pro Bowl shape for the Giants, their defense will be that much better for it.

Stay tuned, Giants fans.