New York Giants left guard Shane Lemieux underwent season-ending knee surgery to repair the patella tendon in his left knee on Wednesday night that is expected to sideline him for the remainder of the 2021 season.
The issue had plagued Lemieux for a majority of camp after he suffered the injury in late July and was carted off the practice field. However, the initial consensus was that the Giants avoided the “worst-case scenario” and surgery was not needed — only rest.
The Giants planned accordingly, holding the starting left tackle out of preseason activities.
He attempted to play in the season opener against the Denver Broncos but lasted just 17 snaps before he was replaced by Ben Bredeson. Lemieux was placed on injured reserve last week.
The fifth-round pick from last year out of Oregon worked his way into the starting lineup after providing some steady play at the left tackle position after Will Hernandez — who started 2020 as the starter — was sidelined due to COVID-19.
His absence throws the Giants’ offensive line into further disarray after center Nick Gates suffered a fractured leg during last week’s Thursday-night loss to the Washington Football team.
Expectations are that Bredeson will slot in at left tackle — the third different Giant to play at that position in three weeks this season — while Billy Price gets the start at center following his acquisition from the Cincinnati Bengals back in August.
A minor saving grace at least heading into Week 3 is that the Giants’ offense doesn’t necessarily face its stiffest test of the season in the Atlanta Falcons. The NFC South side ranks dead-last in the NFL in points allowed, 21st in total yards allowed, and 26th in quarterback knockdowns.
After hanging 29 points on Washington last week, the Giants are the slight favorites to come away with their first win of the season on Sunday afternoon (1 p.m. ET, FOX) — which will be their best chance to get in the win column for the foreseeable future as the New Orleans Saints, Dallas Cowboys, Los Angeles Rams, Carolina Panthers, and Kansas City Chiefs await directly after Week 3.