EAST RUTHERFORD – Ereck Flowers wants to only talk about football.
Well, truth be told, the Giants’ starting left tackle and first-round pick would rather not discuss that in tremendous detail, either.
So if you’re wondering if there is significant meaning to what he posts on his Twitter page, whether the messages include lyrics to favorite songs or philosophical phrases that motivate or inspire him, Flowers is not willing to reveal any specifics.
If you are hoping to learn what aspects of his technique have improved since the Giants drafted him ninth overall four months ago, at least from his perspective, those questions are better asked to someone else. Flowers declined to elaborate on anything mentioned above in an interview that lasted 1 minute, 43 seconds prior to practice Thursday.
Make no mistake: There’s nothing wrong with 6-foot-6, 329-pound Flowers choosing to let his actions speak loudest, of course, and considering the quality of noise he has made so far, the Giants are fine with that, too.
Enough pressure is on the 21-year-old to perform in the spotlight, and making sure he provides answers filled with intrigue and emotion to reporters is pretty far down his things-to-do checklist this summer.
"I know he’s a man of very few words, so you guys [the media] probably don’t get as much out of him as you may want to," Giants left guard Justin Pugh said with a laugh. "But he’s heading in the right direction. It’s a bright future for him."
The future for Flowers must be now, though, and the Giants have confidence in the offensive lineman from the University of Miami to figure out what it takes to play in the NFL while honing his skills and protecting the blind side of Eli Manning.
"I’m just looking to get better," Flowers said, and that’s quite an understatement having been thrust into the spot vacated when left tackle Will Beatty tore his pectoral muscle in the weight room in the spring.
Instead of anchoring the opposite side of the line at right tackle, Flowers finds himself on an island where one false step against – quite often — the NFL’s premier game-changers at defensive end can ruin the offensive game plan at any time.
Flowers held his own in his preseason debut Friday night against the Bengals.
There was some good and some bad, including a 15-yard facemask penalty when he lost his balance in pass protection, but as far as first impressions go, this was a positive one.
On his first professional snap, Flowers drove off the ball and got to the second level rather easily, engaging Bengals linebacker A.J. Hawk and buckling him on impact before pushing him 5 yards deep from the point of attack on a Rashad Jennings run.
Coach Tom Coughlin didn’t exactly throw bouquets at Flowers and the rest of the Giants’ starting offensive line, as is his want, especially after a sluggish performance overall, offering a blunt "OK" as what was essentially the highest grade available.
But Flowers has impressed his teammates on both sides of the ball with his power, not to mention an ability to pick things up quickly in terms of schemes and checks at the line.
"His hands are getting better, his confidence in his sets," Pugh said. "I think the game’s starting to slow down for him."
Defensive end Damontre Moore and Flowers got into a heated skirmish during practice earlier this week, and both players – expected to be significant contributors this season – had to be separated and held back by teammates.
When cooler heads prevailed, Moore said he told Flowers: "Man, I’ve never felt somebody that strong."
"He’s one of those guys where I legitimately tried to use both of my hands to get off of him [and couldn’t]," Moore said, adding: "I can only imagine if he was going full tilt against somebody else. I wouldn’t want to be on the other end of that."