New York Giants right tackle Evan Neal has reportedly cleared concussion protocol, according to Mike Garafolo of NFL Network.

Evan Neal had been in concussion protocol since before the Giants left to go to Detroit and have joint practices with the Lions ahead of their preseason game last Friday. Now, Neal is eligible to return to practice. It will be intriguing to see if Neal plays in Friday's preseason matchup against the Carolina Panthers.

Neal is arguably one of the biggest keys to success for the Giants on offense this season. He did not have a good rookie year, but was selected with the No. 7 overall pick in the 2022 draft, so there is talent that is there. Neal has a big body, but has to put it together technique wise.

If Neal becomes even just a serviceable tackle, that will allow the Giants offense to do a lot more than it did last year, when it emphasized quick passing. Andrew Thomas is elite on the other side of the line, so Neal improving would take a big load off of the interior of the offensive line. With Darren Waller in the fold and potentially Jalin Hyatt being a weapon down the field, Daniel Jones will need more time in the pocket. Neal not developing properly would severely limit the offense.

Based on practice on Wednesday, it seems like starters like Daniel Jones and potentially Darren Waller and Neal will play on Friday against the Panthers. Neal will be one of the players to watch during the game if he does suit up.