Mailbag: What about Marvin Austin?

We weren't able to have a chat last week so here are some leftover questions from my previous chat:

Al (Eatontown, NJ): Do you see Marvin Austin making the team this year?

A: Defensive tackle is going to be one of the most competitive units in all of camp. Linval Joseph and Cullen Jenkins will start. But then it will be a battle royal between Mike Patterson, Shaun Rogers, Austin, rookie Johnathan Hankins and Markus Kuhn. Will the Giants keep five defensive tackles? The Giants will definitely keep Joseph, Jenkisn and Hankins, the team's second-round pick. Patterson, Rogers, Austin and Kuhn will be fighting for perhaps one to two spots. Perhaps the Giants will keep six defensive tackles considering how shoring up the run defense is a major priority. But that might be a stretch. Austin has much to prove since he hasn't done much thus far in his career and hasn't gotten that many opportunities. But it is hard to see the Giants giving up on their 2011 second-round pick already. Jerry Reese doesn't like to do that so my guess is Austin will be on the roster this season.

Rick (Murray Hill): Way too much emphasis on the D-line and not nearly enough at linebacker. It's a fundamental problem with the way this team is constructed. Great to get to the quarterback, but even better to have guys in the middle that can tackle once the ball is past the line of scrimmage.

A: Rick, the Giants place much more of a premium on their defensive line than their linebackers. Sorry, but that is the way they operate. Look at how the team treats the position. The Giants draft linebackers low in the draft and sign cheap veteran free agents for the most part. All the value is placed on the defensive line and that is why you saw the Giants going out and loading up at defensive tackle this offseason. The philosophy is to stop the run at the line first and foremost.

Pete (Asbury Park): Ryan Nassib or David Carr as Eli's backup?

A: I still believe that the Giants will need Carr to serve as an experienced backup this season while Nassib learns the ropes and gains experience. Carr can help Nassib grow tremendously. The problem is, will Tom Coughlin keep three quarterbacks? The Giants are going to feel a tight squeeze and have to make difficult decisions at other positions such as defensive tackle.

Dan (Queens, NY): Do you believe they will stop lining Corey Webster opposite of teams' number one receiver?

A: I think Webster would have to struggle again and Prince Amukamara would have to continue to ascend. If Webster has a repeat of last season, Amukamara could perhaps surpass him with a very impressive season. But the Giants are counting on Webster to bounce back and he is considered their top cornerback.

Tyler (NY): What's the chances of both James Brewer and Brandon Mosley seeing lot's of time this year?

A: I suppose it is always possible that both play awesome in camp and impress the coaches. But of the two, I only see Brewer potentially gaining considerable playing time if he were to win the right tackle job over David Diehl and Justin Pugh. Otherwise, Brewer and Mosley likely would only see "lot's of time" due to injuries to starters. The two did see more snaps in OTAs and minicamp with Chris Snee and David Baas recovering from offseason surgeries. The Giants took a look at several linemen at different spots such as using Kevin Boothe a bit at center.