Veteran offensive lineman Justin Pugh will be linked with the New York Jets and Giants as the NFL season approaches.
Pugh, 33, spent the first five seasons of his football career with the Giants.
So he could fit into a late-season training camp for the Jets The Jet Pressafter recovering from a season-ending knee injury in 2022.
Pugh started all 16 games as a rookie after being drafted #19 overall (Syracuse) in the NFL draft.
With Aaron Rodgers’ Jets and Daniel Jones’ Giants both under national pressure this season, the 6ft, 5in OL, who weighs 311 pounds, could be a veteran fix for both teams.
Pugh signed a five-year, $44 million contract with Arizona in 2018.
The Cardinals turned to Pugh for help on the line, despite his previous injury history.
“If I could give you the perfect equation and a factor for how much it means to me – it all flows in.” said Pugh Then.
“I want to win. I want to win now. I’ve been here for five years. I only made it to the playoffs once.”
Arizona disappointed in the next few seasons before going 11-6 in 2021.
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The Kyler Murray-backed team then disappointed in the playoffs.
Kliff Kingsbury was fired by the Cardinals in 2022, prompting a front office and roster reshuffle.
NFL stars JJ Watt and DeAndre Hopkins were among the big names to leave when the flashy Cardinals underperformed.
Rodgers and the Jets, who are the centerpiece of this season’s HBO series Hard Knocks, are now surrounded by the noise of the preseason.
Question marks surrounding the Jets’ offensive line and their ability to protect the highly-paid Rodgers are growing as week one approaches.
The Giants also face OL issues as the 2023 season begins.
A team coached by Brian Daboll posted a strong but inconsistent 9-7-1 record last year.
A major playoff win over Minnesota was followed by off-season drama surrounding the contract negotiations for star running back Saquon Barkley.
Together, Jones and Barkley combined for more than 2,000 yards last season.
But the Giants play in the NFC East, the division home of reigning conference champions Philadelphia Eagles and a Dallas Cowboys team that won 12 games in 2022.
Pugh has played 120 games (119 starts) over 10 seasons.
Last year he was limited to just five contests, but was a member of the 2013 NFL All-Rookie Team and has the veteran experience that could give playoff contenders a boost early in the season.