Mitch Petrus found out he was going to be starting in his first game about two hours before kickoff. He doesn’t want to leave as abruptly. And so far the second-year guard is playing well enough that it could be difficult for the Giants’ coaches to take him off the field.
“I just want to make sure I secure the spot,” Petrus said. “I want to make sure they can count on me to get the job done. I’m not here to give it up, that’s for sure.”
I pointed out to Petrus that some players earn a starting job in the offseason or in a training camp battle, and then there are some like him who have it thrust upon them due to injuries to other players.
“I’ll take it anyway I can get it,” he said. “I’m not complaining. Beggars can’t be choosers.”
Petrus has played well, but he was also flagged for a holding call on Sunday against the Cowboys. He said that is part of the learning he is doing, adjusting not only to NFL defenders but to NFL officiating.
“That one I just have to be a little more tactful about how I do it,” Petrus said. “You play, you learn. It probably differs from week to week depending on the ref. Even though I think it was kind of questionable, I still think I can do better.”
When David Baas is ready to get back on the field, the Giants will have to figure out where all of their pieces fit. They could stick with Kevin Boothe at center and Petrus at guard, or they could keep Petrus and replace Boothe with Baas. They could also go back to Baas and Boothe and put Petrus back on the bench.
Coughlin hinted that no such decisions have been made. But Petrus said he likes working between Boothe and David Diehl, an alignment that probably gives the Giants the most powerful and athletic combination.
"I feel like we work well together," Petrus said. "I know we struggled in the past and the last two games we’ve run the ball well. We just want to keep that rolling. We’re not doing everything correct, I still have room to improve. I can still be more physical by just knowing better technique. I would like to say im a physical offensive lineman so I don’t think there’s a letdown."