With center Kevin Baas' sprained MCL holding him out of practice this week, the New York Giants will try a number of different offensive line combinations to find the right mix in front of Eli Manning.
Left guard Kevin Boothe has been plugged in at the center position in seasons past and is comfortable in the center position.
"It's a different position," admitted Boothe of playing center as opposed to guard. "It's a lot different especially going against teams that play 3-4 or 4-3 and snapping the ball. It's different, it takes time to learn but I'm confident in either position."
Boothe has been a jack-of-all trades for the Giants and is accustomed to filling in for his injured linemates.
"It's always good to have one group out there but as you know things can change quickly," said Boothe of developing continuity on the offensive line. "You can work one group, like this past week, the second or third play of the game your center is out."
Backup center Jim Cordle could be the lead candidate to replace the injured Baas and he understands the importance of proving his worth to the Giants' coaching staff.
"We've got some veterans and we've got some young guys that have been drafted behind me," explained Cordle. "I think these two games are definitely critical. They're definitely going to make or break me."
If Cordle practices with the first unit offense, he'll have to make a number of adjustments starting with defending New York's fierce pass-rushers in practice.
"When you go from the second team to first team, there's a step up in competition," mentioned Cordle. "I think that's all it is. You have to be ready for that."
Right tackle David Diehl could potentially see a shift over to the left side if Boothe fills in at center. The veteran lineman expressed little angst over the unsettled state of the offensive line.
"There's going to be ups and downs, there's injuries, that's the sport that we chose," noted Diehl. " But I know the group that we've got, I know our coaches, that we're going to rally around, we're going to work to improve and it starts right here on the practice field and breaking things down."
If Diehl is moved to the opposite side, that could open the door for rookie Justin Pugh, who been exclusively practicing and playing with the second team this preseason. Pugh told reporters on Tuesday that he is a versatile player capable of playing in a number of different spots.
"Yeah, I mean I'm willing to play any position, it doesn't really matter to me where I'm at," noted Pugh. "Right tackle, left tackle, guard, I think I can play both positions."
As the Giants continue to reshuffle their offensive line, red zone scoring has been the emphasis this week during practice. Big Blue went 0-4 on Sunday and Boothe is hopeful his unit will get things corrected in time for the third annual MetLife Bowl against the New York Jets.
"It's tough that we move the ball so well and for whatever reason we stall out," admitted Boothe. It just boils down to execution and we still have time luckily to improve upon that. Hopefully it will begin on Saturday."