New York Giants: What the G-Men Will Miss Without Shaun Rogers
The word "big" might have been a play on words on my part, but the season-ending injury sustained to Rogers during training camp really puts the Giants in a tough situation.
The 6'4", 350-pound veteran defensive tackle was supposed to join a defensive line that already sported arguably the brightest duo of defensive ends in Justin Tuck and Jason Pierre-Paul, with a little bit of Osi Umenyiora mixed in there as well.
But the Giants' official website reported early Tuesday morning that Rogers was examined by the team doctor and would visit vascular surgeon, Dr. John Karwowaki, due to a blood clot in his leg.
On Tuesday afternoon, news quickly spread that Rogers would miss the entire 2012 season, as seen in this tweet by ESPN's Ohm Youngmisuk.
Coughlin says Shaun Rogers' blood clot is a season ending injury— Ohm Youngmisuk (@NotoriousOHM) August 14, 2012
Since being signed by New York, Rogers had dedicated his entire offseason to losing weight, dropping nearly 50 lbs., according to Paul Schwartz of the New York Post.
Rogers was a Pro Bowler in 2004 and 2005 with the Lions, seasons that saw him collect 4.0 and 5.5 sacks, and again made the Pro Bowl as a Brown in 2008, when he posted 76 tackles and 4.5 sacks.
For a defensive tackle, Rogers has had his fair share of reaching the quarterback over his 11-year career, racking up 37.5 sacks, including a season-high of seven in '07.
He suffered a devastating injury in 2009, breaking his leg, but had bounced back nicely, playing in 15 games for Cleveland in 2010 and all 16 for the Saints last season—something the Giants were hoping they'd see this season.
What the Giants will miss most with the loss of Rogers is veteran leadership and an enormous body on the interior of the defensive line.
Given his size, Rogers has the ability to take on both the center and the guard or any combination of two opposing offensive linemen, which would have given New York's outside rushers a field day on opposing quarterbacks.
Perhaps the biggest loss for the Giants comes in the form of the rushing defense. Rogers' enormous size and strength was projected to be a big run-stopper for the G-Men, something they undoubtedly need, as they ranked No. 19 in 2011, surrendering more than 121 yards per game.
Rogers himself also would have seen a lot of sack opportunities, as he's just too strong to be held down, and would have the benefit of playing alongside Tuck, Pierre-Paul and Umenyiora, who will undoubtedly draw a lot of attention as usual this season.
As for veteran leadership, there's no defensive tackle with as much experience on the Giants' roster as Rogers, and with so many young guys like Marvin Austin, Linval Joseph, Dwayne Hendricks and Markus Kuhn, you can bet that they'll be absorbing information from Rogers like a sponge.
And while these younger defensive tackles can still pick the veteran's brain, it would obviously benefit them more to see Rogers out there on the field.
Although Joseph and Chris Canty are holding down the starting positions on the D-line and there's a promising backup in Austin, I think Rogers would have seen a large amount of playing time this season.
Would Shaun Rogers have made a big contribution to the Giants in 2012 if it weren't for his injury?
As a Giants fan, you can't be disappointed and dwell on the loss of Rogers—this is a serious injury and we wish Rogers a speedy and healthy recovery.
The Giants deal with injuries every season and Tom Coughlin always does an excellent job of inserting the right pieces and leading the team to greatness.
Keep the faith, Big Blue nation.
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