By Michael Stewart/@golferbad
Introduction: Over the last week or so the New York Giants wide receivers sustain three setbacks; two by way of injuries and the other through a suspension. Sterling Shepard (Broken Thumb) and Corey Coleman both suffered injuries (Torn ACL), while Golden Tate will serve a 4 game suspension for violating the NFL policy performance enhancing drugs. GM Dave Gettleman acted quickly and signed J.T Jones and Amba Etta-Tawo to help provide depth to a depleted receiving core. Despite those signings, did Dave Gettleman do enough or did he sign the right receivers? After a thorough review of the wide receivers currently on the roster and who is still available, there could be conflicting points to supporter both sides of the coin. Let’s look at the in-house options the Giants have and see if they did enough.
Wide Receivers (in-house)
Cody Latimer: Latimer caught 11 balls for 190 yards and a touchdown before his injury. He’s a speedy receiver who also has size with his 6-foot-2 frame.
Russell Shepard: Shepard caught 10 balls for 188 yards and two touchdowns with the Giants last season.
Bennie Fowler: Fowler had a quiet year in 2018 with only 16 receptions, 199 yards, and a touchdown.
Darius Slayton: Slayton has been slowed down a bit to start training camp with a strained hamstring. Hopefully; he can get back onto the field and take advantage of this opportunity.
Reggie White Jr: White has a ton of ability and with the setback of the Giants receiving core, White could take full advantage of it.
Evan Engram: This is best opportunity for Engram to shine as he will get plenty of opportunity to be the main target. Engram showcased his ability in the final four games of season with Beckham out, so he’s no stranger to being the 1st option.
Rhett Ellison: Ellison is primary a blocking Tight End, but he does have some receiving skills and he will asked to produce a little now.
C.J Conrad: Conrad could benefit the most (if he makes the roster) if Head Coach Pat Shurmur employs more double tight end formations. The gifted tight end is more offensively gifted than Ellison and can create mismatches for the defense, along with Engram on the other side the Giants could have another option in the passing game.
Saquon Barkley: Barkley had 91 receptions in 2018 and could see a lot of action; especially in the first four games of the year. It was projected that the Giants offense would go through Barkley with Beckham gone, now that statement is even more evident to start the season.
Final Thoughts: I believe that the Giants GM Dave Gettleman will have a wait and see approach as training camp unfolds and will certainly monitor the production of the wide receivers in camp. Barring any other injuries and if he gets enough positive performances from his current group of wide-outs; there’s a good chance he will go with this crew until Tate returns in game five. However; if injuries or poor performances occurs, Gettleman will certainly keep an eye on the waiver wire to see if there’s an option available.