Beatty on Jets: Countdown and Excitement

The Giants five-man offensive line unit has been starting together for longer than the average NFL career lasts at this point. That's why it's important and interesting, but also awkward, to watch a newbie try to break up that unit. Will Beatty said he isn't breaking it up, only trying to join and improve it.

So far, so good for Beatty in Albany. Read on to see how he thinks he's doing in his quest to unseat David Diehl at the all-important left tackle spot.

Q: Right off the bat, how important is it to you that you win the starting left tackle job?
A: It's an important position. It's on your list of goals and things to do. Make it to the NFL, get drafted and now you want that spot on the team to solidify yourself with the team. It is crucial that you get that. But first and foremost, you want the team to win. You don't want to get up there and you're not ready for the spot and then you injure the team. The offensive tackles fighting for the position are going to get all I have and the best of my abilities; and you're also going to get the best of his abilities. The one that slacks is the one that's going to fall behind.

Q: How do you feel it's going for you so far?
A: I feel like it's going good. We have a few nicks and bruises on the O-line and at tight end, so there's been a lot of moving around so we can still practice and keep people healthy. But that only increases your knowledge of the playbook. Now you know what you have to do and what they have to do. In a way it's kind of helping the younger guys get more time out there on the field.

Q: This line has had the same starting five for years. Now, you're trying to get in there and take a starting spot. How has that whole situation been so far?
A: I don't look at it as taking someone's spot; I look at it as trying to be a part of that group. You're trying to be a part of that starting five group. It's going to be the best five that are going to go out there and play. For the guys that are there now, they've been nothing but kind to me. And when it was my time to step up, when I am with them they treat me like I'm one of them. So there's no animosity there or any hard feelings. We want to win games. We want to protect Eli with the best five out there. There hasn't been one day where we disputed or argued or anything like that. It's just been all positive reinforcement and communication. That's the key out there, especially for us. Eli changes the call in a second and a split-second after that you have to know the new guy that you're picking up.

Q: What kind of feedback have you gotten from the coaches?
A: Not much feedback. They tell you when you're doing wrong. And when you're doing well you know it because you're doing what everybody else does. The coaches are saying that I have to work at my assignments. They have to know that whatever the defense does out there, that I know what I'm doing. They're not just going to give me the spot. They made sure that I knew that if I wanted it I had to earn it. Basically they put it on my shoulders to perform during this camp. They want to see what I can bring to the table.

Q: How much better are you now than you were at this point last year?
A: I've gotten heavier. I've gotten stronger. That gives you a lot more power in punching and standing your ground. And then my knowledge of the playbook; you can just see the difference when I'm not thinking as much. I'm more just going out there having fun and doing my job – making calls, blocking, making the second-effort block where it's not called up that way, but I know what I need to pick up. Knowing more of the game lets you play faster.

Q: How much has it helped you to be going up against so many good DEs here?
A: I think it helps a lot because they know the position I'm in and it makes them come after me harder because if I slack off, I'm going to look bad in front of the coaches. But if I'm going hard and they slack off that's going to make them look worse. It gives it that competition. They know I'm fighting for a spot so they have to make sure that I don't make them look bad. It brings us all together though. After practice you're still on the same team. It's just that we're white and blue during practice.

Q: How would you describe yourself as a tackle?
A: A New York Giants tackle. When they call on me to pass block, it's ‘you better pass block, don't let him get touched.' Run block, ‘move him off the line.' Being versatile is important. Being on the left side, there's more of a passing mentality. But when they say run, you better make sure you run it just like the right tackle would run it.

Q: Do you feel you're further along in either the passing or running game?
A: I feel like I have a pretty good mix. Coaches during the offseason have stressed the fact that you have to be very versatile. You have to make sure your knowledge of the game is up there with that of the vets.

Q: Anything in particular stand out to you during this camp?
A: So far there haven't been any pranks pulled on me. No plays really stand out. We do one-on-ones all the time and we have individual competition. Like Osi (Umenyiora) and Dave (Tollefson), they know when I come in I'm coming in to work. So, when they line up against me I want their best, and they know that. And if they don't give me their best then they're going to get mine and you'll be able to see that on film. Every morning we ask each other if we're ready to work. We're all going to give our best. We're still on the same team so we're not trying to make the other person look bad. But it is a livelihood, it is a job. You want to do your job to the best of your abilities.

Q: How excited are you to finally face some real competition?
A: It's pretty exciting. It's been a while since you actually got to be let loose. There is no holding back, no stepping off to the side. It's just what you got and your chance to show it. That's a pretty good defense. They had a real good year last year and they made some changes so everyone is hyping them up. For this to be our first game and this is who you get to go against, it's a pretty good feeling. Coach said a lot of us will have an opportunity to show what we have. The countdown and excitement is building up.