‘Nick Gates against the world’: Giants fans rally to offensive lineman in cool way after suffering brutal injury in week 2
Offensive linemen rarely become fan favorites, especially in a league where quarterbacks and skillful players are the kings of popularity. But offensive lineman Nick Gates has managed to break through with the Giants fan base since he became a starter last year.
He did it thanks to his tenacity and easy-going personality. He is known for his long brown hair and his propensity to train with his stomach sticking out of his jersey. But he captivated Giants fans last year when he faced threatening Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald, and didn’t back down even when Donald grabbed his face mask.
Gates’ journey – he’s gone from an undrafted rookie who missed out on the entire 2018 season to a starter at center in 2020, a position he had never played before – didn’t hurt either .
During the offseason, Gates took to Talkin ‘Giants, a popular Giants podcast, and later tweeted their signature slogan. So it’s no surprise that the Giants fan base rallied around Gates after he suffered a likely injury at the end of the season on Thursday night.
Friday, Bobby Skinner and Justin Penik – the co-hosts of Talkin ‘Giants – instruct their listeners to tweet “Nick Gates against the world”. Enough people listened – and others followed suit – and the sentence was tendency on Twitter by Friday night.
“What drew us to Nick was his meanness, his willingness to fight, his versatility, his history and ultimately being a good offensive lineman in the NFL,” Skinner said.
On Thursday night, Gates suffered a grisly injury against Washington that had just about everyone at FedEx Field in Landover, Md. The entire Giants roster surrounded him before he was taken off the field. He was rushed to hospital, where he remains for the time being after surgery Friday morning on what has been described as a “lower leg fracture”.
After the game – which the Giants lost in a heartbreaking way – Gates’ agent Jonathan Perzley posted on Instagram that Gates “laughed on the phone and said ‘I broke this thing in half'” and Perzley added that “it would take a lot more than a broken bone to stop this man.
Gates then posted on Instagram a photo of himself waving to the crowd as he stepped off the pitch on Thursday, with the message: “Thank you for all the prayers, giant nation! It’s gonna be a (devil) comeback! “
His teammates also expressed their support after Thursday night’s game.
“He’s a guy who works his cock every day and someone everyone looks to be a leader,” quarterback Daniel Jones said. “It hurts to see him fall like that. I certainly pray for him and wish the best.
Saquon Barkley called Gates a “fighter”.
Giants coach Joe Judge said he “can’t say enough about Nick in terms of what he does for the team, how he works, the energy and the spirit he takes. brings everyday. He’s a guy from the all-in team, he’s a very altruistic player. He’s been a great leader for this team … It’s always: “Whatever is best for the team, coach, that’s what I’m going to do.”
Gates is known for his easy-going and playful personality. He has long brown hair that he will shake in the wind for a comedic effect. He enjoys training with his stomach hanging out and is ready to crack jokes at press conferences.
Ahead of the season, Gates was elected team captain for the first time.
“I mean, right now I’m having chills,” Gates said after being named captain. “It’s an honor to just be captain, especially for the great organization the Giants have. Just the people who came before me who are captains, just so that they can be a part of that legacy, that’s great.
But now the Giants have to go for it in 2021 without him. In his place – and with goaltender Shane Lemieux also absent – they’ll likely start two new players at left goalie (Ben Bredeson) and center (Billy Price).
Gates is under contract until next season, and he will go to rehab and recover in time to play next season in a Giants uniform.
Until then, it will be just Nick Gates vs. The World.
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Zack Rosenblatt can be reached at [email protected].