The change is as subtle as putting his left hand down in the three-point stance instead of his right. It’s also as dramatic as moving from the left side of the offensive line to the right, from protecting the quarterback’s blind side to be the focal point of the running game.

Giants first-round pick Justin Pugh, a three-year starter at left tackle for Syracuse, has been switched to right tackle. He’s playing the position for the first time in his career, save for a few practice reps here and there.

The Giants view Pugh as the heir apparent to 11-year veteran David Diehl and as an infusion of youth on an aging and ailing offensive line. He could be in the lineup sooner rather than later with Diehl coming off a down season and accepting a pay cut to return. He also had offseason knee surgery.

In addition, current backup James Brewer is unproven.

During the Giants’ just-concluded two-day rookie minicamp over the weekend, Pugh settled into his new position, showing athleticism and a mean streak. He wears his 6-4, 301-pound frame well.

"At first, when I first did it at the end of the season," Pugh said when asked if he felt awkward on the right side. "But I’ve been working on my right tackle stance. It feels a lot better now. I just need to keep getting more and more live reps and it’ll get easier.

"The whole thing is protect the inside. Before, I was right hand, right foot and now it’s just left hand, left foot. So it’s just getting used to that and just feeling more comfortable in that stance. It’s something that I feel really comfortable with now and just need to keep building on it over the summer."