New York Giants Scouting Reports

 

Scouting Reports Last Updated: November 17, 2017

Quarterbacks:

Entering the third season in Ben McAdoo’s West Coast Offense, Eli Manning was expected to build upon his strong 2015 season. Instead, Manning’s production markedly declined in 2016. While Manning nearly tied his career-high completion percentage (63 percent), his touchdown-to-interception ratio fell from 35-to-14 in 2015 to 26-to-16 in 2016. His passing yards (from 4,432 to 4,027), yards per pass play (from 7.2 to 6.7), and QB rating (from 93.6 to 86.0) also dropped. Worse is what happened to the Giants offense as a team. The Giants fell from 8th to 25th in overall offense and from 7th to 17th in passing offense. Manning was the first player selected in the 2004 NFL Draft and immediately traded to the Giants by the Chargers. The 36-year old Manning owns practically every quarterback record in franchise history. He is 8-4 as a playoff quarterback and a two-time Super Bowl MVP. His best season was 2011 when he carried the Giants to the playoffs, highlighted by eight come-from-behind victories. Manning has excellent size and a strong arm. He is extremely tough and has never missed a game in 13 seasons. He only has a 59.7 percent career completion percentage though that figure has improved with the offensive emphasis shifting from a down-field, vertical attack to the West Coast system. Manning has the perfect temperament for playing in the New York metropolitan area as the intense media spotlight does not seem to faze him. He is very smart and hard-working. Manning excels in the mental aspects of the game. Manning reads opposing defenses extremely well. The coaching staff trusts him to make complicated pre-snap reads for both the running and passing games. Manning makes rapid decisions and gets rid of the ball quickly, one of the reasons why his sack numbers are low. On the negative side, Manning is still guilty of making the ill-advised, head-scratching throw when the smarter decision would be to throw the football away or take the sack. His gun-slinger mentality – which leads to big plays – also causes him to make some risky throws in tight windows. A true pocket passer, Manning is not a threat to harm a defense with his feet. Manning was voted to the Pro Bowl in 2008 and 2011, and played in the game after the 2012 and 2015 regular seasons as an alternate. Given Manning’s age and down season, inevitable questions about his current and future ability as a championship-level passer have started again.

The Giants signed Geno Smith as an unrestricted free agent in March 2017. Smith was originally drafted in the 2nd round of the 2013 NFL Draft by the New York Jets. Smith has started 30 regular-seasons games, with 29 of those starts coming in 2013-2014. He lost his starting job to Ryan Fitzpatrick in August 2015 after his jaw was broken by a teammate. Smith started one game in 2016 but tore the ACL in his right knee in that game. Smith has completed 57.9 percent of his passes for 5,962 yards, 28 touchdowns, and 36 interceptions. Smith has good size and is a good athlete with a strong arm. He has struggled with his accuracy and mental aspects of the game. Smith needs to protect the ball better (36 interceptions, 7 fumbles). He also has had some off-the-field immaturity issues.

The Giants drafted Davis Webb in the 3rd round of the 2017 NFL Draft. Webb has the tools. He has ideal size and a very strong arm. He can move around the pocket, but he is not a scrambler. Webb throws a nice deep ball and can wing it through tight windows. But he is a project who needs a lot of technique work and more experience in reading defenses given that he comes from collegiate spread offense. He can be streaky with his accuracy and his decision-making has been questioned despite his intelligence. Webb is a very smart, hard working quarterback who loves the game and who is dedicated to getting better.

Halfbacks:

Paul Perkins was drafted by the Giants in the 5th round of the 2016 NFL Draft. As a rookie, Perkins played in 14 regular-season games with one start (regular-season finale). He also started the playoff game. Perkins finished the regular season with 112 carries for 456 yards (4.1 yards per carry) and 15 catches for 162 yards (10.8 yards per catch). Perkins lacks ideal size and speed but he has good vision, quick feet, and cutting ability. Perkins is a tough runner who plays bigger than his size, but he is not a powerful runner. He catches the ball well.

Shane Vereen was placed on Injured Reserve (IR) in September 2016 with a triceps injury that required surgery, activated back off of IR in December, and then placed on IR again that same month after re-injuring his triceps and needing surgery again. Vereen was originally selected in the 2nd round of the 2011 NFL Draft by the New England Patriots. The Giants signed him as a free agent in March 2015. In 2015, serving as the team’s third-down back and playing in all 16 games with no starts, Vereen had his most productive year in the NFL as a pass receiver. He caught a career-high 59 passes for 495 yards and four touchdowns. It was the most receptions by a Giants running back in a single season since Tiki Barber. Vereen also carried the ball 61 times for 260 yards (4.3 yards per carry). However, Vereen played in just five games in 2016 and finished the season with 33 rushes for 158 yards (4.8 yards per carry) and 11 catches for 94 yards. Vereen lacks ideal size and power, but he is an elusive back with good vision and quickness. Vereen is one of the better pass-catching backs in the NFL as he runs good routes and has good hands. He is also solid in pass protection. Vereen has proven to be somewhat injury prone.

Orleans Darkwa was placed on Injured Reserve in November 2016 with a fractured tibia. Darkwa played in 10 games with two starts for the Giants in 2016. He carries the ball 30 times for 111 yards (3.7 yards per carry) and two touchdowns. He also caught two passes for 12 yards. Darkwa was originally signed by the Miami Dolphins as a rookie free agent after the 2014 NFL Draft. He played in four games in September before being waived in October and signed to the team’s Practice Squad. The Giants signed him off of Miami’s Practice Squad in November 2014. Darkwa has average size and overall athletic ability, but he is a very physical, instinctive between-the-tackles runner. He lacks elusiveness and the ability to create on his own. Darkwa has good hands despite having only 10 career receptions.

Wayne Gallman was drafted in the 4th round of the 2017 NFL Draft by the Giants. Fourth-year junior. Gallman is a well-rounded running back with good size (6’1”, 215lbs), vision, and decent elusiveness and speed. He is a slashing, cutback runner. Gallman lacks explosiveness, but he is very competitive and runs hard. Gallman can pass protect and catch the football.

Fullbacks:

Shane Smith began 2017 on the team’s 53-man roster, was waived and signed to the Practice Squad in late September, and then re-signed to the 53-man roster in November. Smith was originally signed by the Giants as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2017 NFL Draft. Smith is a classic lead-blocking fullback who rarely touched the ball in college. Gym rat who is super strong. Smart. Good special teams player.

Wide Receivers:

Sterling Shepard was selected in the 2nd round of the 2016 NFL Draft by the Giants. Shepard started all 16 regular-season games as a rookie, catching 65 passes for 683 yards (10.5 yards per catch) and eight touchdowns, mostly out of the slot. Shepard lacks ideal size, but he is strong and quick with good speed. Shepard runs good routes, is tough going over the middle, adjusts well to the football, and has good hands. He did not make many plays down the field however, with his longest reception being for 32 yards.

The Giants signed Roger Lewis as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2016 NFL Draft. Lewis made the team and played in 13 regular-season games with one start. He finished with just seven catches for 97 yards and two touchdowns. Lewis has decent size and is a good athlete. He flashed the ability to make plays down the field but he needs to become a more consistent pro-level route runner. Lewis was utilized on special teams as a gunner on punt coverage.

Travis Rudolph began the season on the Giants Practice Squad and was signed to the 53-man roster in October 2017. Rudolph was originally signed by the Giants as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2017 NFL Draft. Rudolph lacks size, speed, and agility, but he plays better than he tests. He runs good routes, adjusts well to the football, and has good hands. Competitor who will block.

Tavarres King began 2017 with the Giants, was waived in mid-September, and then was re-signed to the 53-man roster in October. King was originally drafted in the 5th round of the 2013 NFL Draft by the Denver Broncos. He spent time with the Broncos (2013), Panthers (2013-14), Jaguars (2014), and Buccaneers (2014-15). The Giants signed King to the Practice Squad in late September 2015. He played in seven regular season games in 2016 and the playoff game. King is a tall, thin receiver with very good speed. He is not a physical player and is best suited as an outside receiver.

Kalif Raymond was signed to the Practice Squad in October 2017 and the 53-man roster in November. The 5’9”, 160-pound Raymond was originally signed by the Denver Broncos after the 2016 NFL Draft. He has spent time with both the Broncos (2016) and New York Jets (2017). Raymond has played in six NFL games. The diminutive Raymond has not caught a pass, but he has returned nine kickoffs (24.7 yards per return) and 16 punts (9.3 yards per return).

Marquis Bundy is currently on the Giants Practice Squad. The 6’4”, 215-pound Bundy was originally signed as a rookie free agent by the Arizona Cardinals after the 2016 NFL Draft. The Cardinals waived him in August 2017 and the Giants then signed him. Bundy is a big receiver with good overall athletic ability. He is not overly physical but Bundy runs good routes.

Darius Powe was signed to the Practice Squad in October 2017. The Giants originally signed Powe as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2016 NFL Draft and he spent the 2016 season on the team’s Practice Squad. He was waived/injured in August 2017 with a hamstring injury. Powe is a big receiver with decent overall athleticism.

Odell Beckham was placed on Injured Reserve in October 2017 after fracturing his left ankle in Week 5. The ankle injury required surgery. Beckham finished the season with 25 catches for 302 yards and three touchdowns. In his first three seasons (2014-2016), Beckham accrued 288 catches for 4,122 yards and 35 touchdowns in 43 regular-season games. Beckham’s accolades already include Pro Football Writers of America “Rookie of the Year” (2014), second-team All-Pro (2015, 2016), and Pro Bowl (2014, 2015, 2016). All of this despite constant double teams by opposing defenses. Beckham was drafted in the 1st round of the 2014 NFL Draft by the Giants. While Beckham lacks classic size, his long arms, big hands, and tremendous jumping ability give him a very good catch radius. Beckham is an explosive athlete with excellent speed, quickness, and agility. He is able to play multiple positions, including the slot. Beckham runs good routes, is very quick out of his breaks, adjusts exceptionally well to the football, and regularly makes the circus catch. He is very dangerous with the football in his hands after the catch. Competitive, passionate, and hard working, Beckham’s biggest negatives are his maturity and temperament. Beckham has a target painted on his back and has to deal with other teams trying to get under his skin. He did not play well in the 2016 playoff loss to the Green Bay Packers.

Brandon Marshall was placed on Injured Reserve in October 2017 after suffering an ankle injury in Week 5 that required stabilization surgery to repair torn ligaments. Marshall finished his disappointing debut season with the Giants with only 18 catches for 154 yards. Marshall was originally drafted in the 4th round of the 2006 NFL Draft by the Denver Broncos. He has played with the Broncos (2006-2009), Miami Dolphins (2010-2011), Chicago Bears (2012-2014), and Jets (2015-2016). Marshall is a six-time Pro Bowler (2008, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2015) and two-time All-Pro (2012 and 2015). Marshall is the only player in NFL history with six seasons of 100 or more receptions. In 2016, started 15 regular-season games despite battling knee and foot injuries that he suffered in Week 2. Marshall caught 59 passes for 788 yards and three touchdowns. Those numbers were dramatically down from his 109-catch, 1,502-yard, 14-touchdown 2015 season. The Giants signed Marshall in March 2017 after he was cut by the New York Jets. Marshall is clearly nearing the end of a stellar career and he did not live up to lofty expectations with the Giants even before his ankle injury. Marshall has excellent size (6’4”, 230 pounds), but he’s become more of possession receiver with inconsistent hands.

Dwayne Harris was placed on Injured Reserve in October 2017 after fracturing his foot in Week 5. The foot injury required surgery. Harris finished the year with no catches, nine kickoff returns (20.9 yards per return), and seven punt returns (6.9 yards per return). Harris was originally drafted in the 6th round of the 2011 NFL Draft by the Cowboys. The Giants signed him in free agency in March 2015. In his initial season with the Giants, Harris caught a career-best 36 catches for 396 yards and four touchdowns. He also averaged 10 yards per punt return and 28.7 yards per kickoff return, becoming the first Giants player in 60 years to return a kickoff and punt for a touchdown in the same season. However, Harris suffered through an injury-plagued season in 2016, catching only one pass and seeing his punt (5.9 yards per return) and kickoff (24.2 yards per return) averages decline. Harris did remain a force on punt coverage and he was voted to his first Pro Bowl after the 2016 season. Though he lacks height, Harris is a well-built athlete with decent speed and quickness. He is tough and physical and an asset as a blocker in the running game. Harris can play in the slot and has decent hands. Harris has four career returns four touchdowns and has won the “NFC Special Teams Player of the Week” award four times in his career.

Kevin Norwood was waived/injured and then placed on Injured Reserve in August 2017 with a hip injury that he suffered in practice. Norwood was originally drafted in the 4th round of the 2014 NFL Draft by the Seattle Seahawks. Norwood has spent time with the Seahawks (2014), Carolina Panthers (2014-2015), and San Diego Chargers (2016). The Chargers terminated his Practice Squad contract in November 2016 and he was then signed by the Giants to their Practice Squad that same month. Norwood has played in 10 regular-season games with two starts. He has nine career receptions for 102 yards. Norwood is a big (6’2”, 210lbs), physical possession receiver who runs good routes. He lacks ideal speed and quickness.

Keeon Johnson was waived/injured and then placed on Injured Reserve in August 2017 with a foot injury. Johnson was originally signed by the Giants as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2017 NFL Draft. Johnson is a big possession receiver.

Tight Ends/H-Backs:

The Giants signed Rhett Ellison as an unrestricted free agent in March 2017. Ellison was originally drafted in the 4th round of the 2012 NFL Draft by the Vikings. In five NFL seasons, Ellison has played in 73 regular-season games with 41 starts. He has 51 career receptions for 515 yards and three touchdowns. Ellison suffered a serious patellar tendon injury in Week 17 of 2015. He returned in 2016, but only caught nine passes for 57 yards. Ellison has good size (6’5”, 250 pounds) and is a good blocker. He is very versatile, having the ability to play tight end, H-Back, and fullback. Lacking speed and quickness, Ellison is not much of a threat as a receiver. Ellison is a good special teams player.

The Giants drafted Evan Engram in the 1st round of the 2017 NFL Draft. Engram was a four-year starter at the University of Mississippi. He is not built like a traditional tight end, more like an H-Back/wide receiver ‘tweener. The strength of Engram’s game is catching the football. He creates mismatches because of his combination of size and athletic ability. Engram is quick and fast. He runs good routes and is a natural pass receiver with a good catch radius. Engram is a vertical threat down the seam of a defense. He also runs well after the catch. Engram is committed to the game and a hard worker. While Engram works hard at his blocking, he lacks the frame to ever be a significant factor as an in-line blocking tight end.

Jerell Adams was drafted by the Giants in the 6th round of the 2016 NFL Draft. Adams played in 13 games with two starts, and finished the regular season with 16 catches for 122 yards (7.6 yards per catch) and one touchdown. Adams combines excellent size with good overall athletic ability. He has the tools to become a quality blocker and receiver if he works hard and develops his potential. Adams adjusts well to the football, has good hands, and flashes some run-after-the-catch ability.

Matt LaCosse played in three games in 2017 for the Giants with one start. The team waived him and signed him to the Practice Squad in November. LaCosse was originally signed by the Giants as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2015 NFL Draft. The Giants waived/injured him in August with a hamstring injury and re-signed him to the Practice Squad in November and the 53-man roster in December 2015. He played in two games in 2015 and finished with three catches for 22 yards. The Giants waived/injured Matt LaCosse in late August 2016 and then placed him on Injured Reserve with a knee injury that required surgery. LaCosse is a versatile player who played tight end, H-Back, and fullback in college. LaCosse has good speed and catches the football well.

Offensive Tackles:

Despite starting 31 regular-season games in his first two seasons, Ereck Flowers has struggled with his technique at left tackle, allowing far too much pass pressure. Flowers was drafted in the 1st round of the 2015 NFL Draft by the Giants. He is huge, strong, powerful lineman who can muscle and maul defenders in the running game. He has the feet, agility, and overall athleticism to be a sound pass protector, but he needs to dramatically improve his pass protection technique. Simply put, Flowers is too inconsistent.

Due to an injury Marshall Newhouse, Bobby Hart became the new starter at right tackle in Week 3 until Week 17 when he sat out due a forearm injury. In all, Hart started 13 games at right tackle. Hart was drafted in the 7th round of the 2015 NFL Draft by the Giants. He played in nine games with one start at right tackle as a rookie. Hart is big, strong, and smart, with just enough overall athleticism to play tackle. While he was mostly steady, Hart did have issues in pass protection at times.

Chad Wheeler was signed by the Giants as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2017 NFL Draft. Although he did not test well athletically, Wheeler combines good size with decent overall foot quickness at left tackle. He is a solid technician who plays hard and enjoys the game. Tough and aggressive. However, he had injury and off-the-field issues in college. Wheeler is a better pass protector than run blocker and he needs to get stronger.

Adam Bisnowaty is currently on the Giants Practice Squad. The Giants drafted Bisnowaty in the 6th round of the 2017 NFL Draft. Fifth-year senior. Bisnowaty played left tackle at the collegiate level but the Giants moved him to right tackle as a rookie. Bisnowaty looks the part with a good frame with long arms and huge hands. He lacks ideal agility in pass protection and mauling power as a run blocker, but he is a scrappy player with good intangibles. Smart, tough, and aggressive. Bisnowaty works to finish his blocks and has a mean streak. Somewhat injury prone and he struggled in the preseason.

Offensive Guards:

Justin Pugh missed five games in the second half of the 2016 season with a knee injury. He started the other 11 games at left guard. Pugh was drafted in the 1st round of the 2013 NFL Draft by the Giants. He was voted to the Pro Football Writers All-Rookie Team after starting all 16 games as rookie at right tackle. Pugh has had injury issues every year since, including missing two games in 2014 with a quadriceps injury and two games in 2015 with an ocular concussion. He was shifted to left guard in 2015. Pugh lacks ideal size and arm length, but he is a good athlete who plays with fine strength, technique, and leverage. Pugh is smart, aggressive, and tenacious. Though not a mauler, he can get movement on his run blocks and he has the agility to do well in pass protection, though he needs to become more consistent in that area. He can pull and block defenders at the second level. Pugh is very versatile, able to play both tackle and guard spots, and probably even center in a pinch. He needs to stay healthy.

John Jerry started every game at right guard for the Giants in 2016. Jerry was originally drafted in the 3rd round of the 2010 NFL Draft by the Dolphins where he started 45 games in his first four seasons in the NFL. The Giants signed Jerry as an unrestricted free agent in March 2014 and started 16 games in 2014 and eight in 2015. Jerry looks the part as he has great size and long arms. A career inconsistent performer as both a run and pass blocker, Jerry became a far more reliable and steadier player in 2016.

The Giants signed D.J. Fluker in March 2017 after he was cut by the Los Angeles Chargers. Fluker was drafted by the San Diego Chargers in the 1st round of the 2013 NFL Draft. In four seasons with the Chargers, Fluker has started 59 regular-season games, first at right tackle and then right guard. After a solid rookie season in 2013, Fluker has struggled since and was cut by the Chargers in March 2017. Fluker has excellent size (6’5”, 339 pounds) and strength, but he has struggled in pass protection. Tough, he’s played through injuries but has had issues with the cerebral elements of the game such as picking up stunts.

Jon Halapio started the 2017 season on the Giants Practice Squad and was signed to the 53-man roster in early October. Halapio was originally drafted in the 6th round of the 2014 NFL Draft by the New England Patriots. He has bounced around different leagues and teams including the Patriots (2014), Boston Brawlers (2014), Denver Broncos (2014–2015), Arizona Cardinals (2015), Brooklyn Bolts (2015), and Patriots (2016) again. The Giants added him to their Practice Squad in September 2016. Halapio has not played in an NFL regular-season game. Although he lacks ideal athleticism, Halapio is stout and strong. Versatile, he played both guard and center for the Giants during the 2017 preseason.

The Giants signed John Greco in November 2017. The 32-year old, 6’4”, 318-pound Greco was originally drafted in the 3rd round of the 2008 NFL Draft by the St. Louis Rams. He has spent time with the Rams (2008-2010), Cleveland Browns (2011-2016), and New Orleans Saints (2017). Greco has started 70 of the 111 regular-season games he has played in, including starts at right guard (45), left guard (24), and center (1).

Ethan Cooper was signed to the Practice Squad in October 2017. The 6’2, 322-pound Cooper was originally signed by the Pittsburgh Steelers as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2017 NFL Draft. The Steelers waived Cooper in early September. Cooper played at a lower level of competition in college but he has good size and is a decent athlete.

Nick Becton was signed to the Practice Squad in November 2017. The 6’6”, 322-pound Becton  was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2013 NFL Draft by the San Diego Chargers. He has spent time with the Chargers (2013), Giants (2014), New Orleans Saints (2014), Chicago Bears (2015-2016), Detroit Lions (2017), and Kansas City Chiefs (2017). Becton has played in six regular-season games with no starts.

Jessamen Dunker was waived/injured and then placed on Injured Reserve in August 2017 with an undisclosed injury. Dunker was originally signed by the Giants as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2017 NFL Draft. Dunker is a big, athletic guard who needs to get stronger and dedicate himself to the game. He does not play with much power and he needs a lot of technique work. Raw, but has an upside.

Offensive Centers:

Brett Jones was on the active roster for 14 regular-season games in 2016 and made one start at left guard, but left the game very early with an injury. Jones was originally drafted by the CFL Calgary Stampeders in 2013 and named the CFL’s “Most Outstanding Rookie” after that season. Jones was also named the CFL’s “Most Outstanding Offensive Lineman” in 2014. He signed by the Giants in February 2015 and placed on Injured Reserve in September 2015 after spraining the MCL in his knee on the preseason finale. Jones lacks size but he is well built with good overall athleticism. He is a tough, aggressive lineman and very smart. Versatile, he can play both guard and center.

Weston Richburg was placed on Injured Reserve in November 2017 with a concussion that he suffered a month earlier. Richburg was originally drafted in the 2nd round of the 2014 NFL Draft by the Giants. He has started 50 regular-season games. However, after a strong 2015 campaign, his play dipped in 2016 and 2017. Richburg is an average-sized center who can have trouble with powerful tackles. He is a good athlete who can block at the second level and pull on outside runs.

Defensive Ends:

In his first season with the Giants, Olivier Vernon was slowed early by a serious left hand/wrist injury but he ended up starting every game and playing 94 percent of all defensive snaps. Vernon finished with 63 tackles, 8.5 sacks, and one forced fumble. He was also named second-team All-Pro. Vernon was originally drafted in the 3rd round of the 2012 NFL Draft by the Dolphins. The Giants signed him as a free agent in March 2016. Vernon lacks classic size, but he is a very strong, athletic end with long arms and a non-stop motor. He is one of the better two-way ends in football and is equally disruptive against the run and the pass. Vernon can get heat on the quarterback from both the end and tackle positions, and gets a lot of hits on the quarterback.

Jason Pierre-Paul started 12 games in 2016, but missed the remainder of the season with groin and sports hernia injuries that required surgery. He finished the year with 53 tackles, seven sacks, eight pass defenses, and three forced fumbles. Pierre-Paul was drafted in the 1st round of the 2010 NFL Draft by the Giants. His best season came in 2011 when he accrued 86 tackles and 16.5 sacks. After not missing a game in his first three years with the Giants, Pierre-Paul has not completed a full season in three of the last four years, including 2013 (herniated disc and shoulder injuries) and 2015 (fireworks accident that permanently maimed his right hand). Pierre-Paul has an excellent combination of size, strength, and athleticism. When healthy and focused, Pierre-Paul can be an explosive, disruptive difference-maker against both the run and the pass. His tremendous wingspan helps him to bat passes down at the line of scrimmage (42 career pass defenses and 2 interceptions). As a pass rusher, he can beat blockers with both power and movement skills. Pierre-Paul is a very good run defender, both at the point-of-attack as well as in backside pursuit.

Kerry Wynn saw his playing time decrease in 2016 (11 percent of defensive snaps). He played in 14 regular-season games with no starts and finished the year with 12 tackles and 0.5 sacks. Wynn was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Giants after the 2014 NFL Draft. He has played in 34 regular-season games, with seven starts, for the Giants in his three years with the team. Wynn has a nice combination of size, strength, and overall athletic ability. Wynn is a better run defender than pass rusher as he lacks dynamic quickness on the outside pass rush. He is able to play defensive tackle in pass-rush situations.

Avery Moss was drafted in the 5th round of the 2017 NFL Draft by the Giants. Moss began his collegiate career at Nebraska where he was dismissed for an off-the-field incident. Moss has good size with long arms and is a good athlete. Moss flashes as a disruptive run defender and pass rusher, but he needs to get stronger at the point-of-attack. He is a competitor who plays hard. Needs technique work.

Jordan Williams began the season on the team’s Practice Squad, was added to the 53-man roster for a week in November, and then re-signed to the Practice Squad. Williams was originally signed by the New York Jets as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2015 NFL Draft. He has spent time with the Jets (2015) and Miami Dolphins (2015-2016). The Giants signed Williams to the Practice Squad in December 2016. Williams flashed at times for the Giants during the 2017 preseason with his combination of quickness and strength. A bit of a ‘tweener, he is versatile enough to play defensive tackle in some packages.

Romeo Okwara was placed on Injured Reserve with a knee injury that he suffered in practice in October 2017. The Giants signed Okwara as an undrafted free agent after the 2016 NFL Draft. Okwara played in every game in 2016 with four regular-season starts (36 percent of defensive snaps), and finished the year with 25 tackles, one sack, and two pass defenses. Okwara played in the first five games of the 2017 season and was credited with three tackles. Okwara looks the part with excellent size and arm length. He’s a hard worker with a fine motor. While Okwara is a good athlete, he lacks dynamic quickness to excel as outside pass rusher. He flashes more when rushing from the defensive tackle position. Okwara is a solid run defender, but he can still improve his consistency in this area.

Evan Schwan was waived/injured and then placed on Injured Reserve with a fractured left foot that he suffered in the third preseason game in August 2017. Schwan was signed by the Giants as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2017 NFL Draft. Schwan is a big defensive end who was an ascending player at Penn State late in his collegiate career. Smart and hard working. He is a better run defender than pass rusher as he lacks ideal quickness.

Defensive Tackles:

In his first season with the Giants, Damon Harrison had a superb year, starting every game and finishing the regular season with career highs in tackles (86) and sacks (2.5). Harrison was named first-team All-Pro. Harrison was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Jets after the 2012 NFL Draft. The Giants signed him as an unrestricted free agent in March 2016. Harrison is a strong, mammoth player with surprising athleticism for someone so large. He is a rock against the run, able to hold the point-of-attack against the double-team block. He may be the NFL’s best inside run defender. Though Harrison is a better run defender than pass rusher, he will flash at times getting after the quarterback.

The primary reserve at defensive tackle, Jay Bromley played in 15 regular-season games with no starts. He received 22 percent of defensive snaps and finished the season with 14 tackles and one sack. Bromley was originally drafted in the 3rd round of the 2014 NFL Draft by the Giants. He has played in 39 regular-season games with just four starts. Bromley combines decent size, strength, and overall athletic ability. He has improved his play against the run since coming to the Giants but he has not developed into the inside pass rusher hoped for when he was drafted.

The Giants claimed Robert Thomas off of waivers from the Carolina Panthers in September 2016. He played in eight regular-season games with no starts (6 percent of defensive snaps) and finished the year with five tackles and one sack. Thomas was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Washington Redskins after the 2014 NFL Draft. He has spent time with the Redskins (2014-15), Seahawks (2015), Patriots (2015), Dolphins (2015), and Panthers (2016). Thomas is a big, strong tackle who plays hard.

The Giants drafted Dalvin Tomlinson in the 2nd round of the 2017 NFL Draft. Tomlinson is an average-sized tackle who is very strong and tough. He can hold the point-of-attack against the double-team block. He is an outstanding run defender who plays with with leverage. Can stack and shed and he is a sure tackler. Tomlinson is not a top-notch pass rusher, but he has good quickness and can push the pocket. Tomlinson is very smart and a high-character player who plays hard all of the time. Tore one ACL in 2011 and the other in 2013.

The Giants placed Josh Banks on Injured Reserve in September 2017 with a shoulder injury (torn labrum) that he suffered in the preseason finale that required surgery. Banks was signed by the Giants as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2017 NFL Draft. Banks is an athletic, undersized defensive tackle who flashes the ability to disrupt and make plays in the backfield.

Linebackers:

Jonathan Casillas had his best season to date as a pro in 2016. Casillas played in every game, with 15 regular-season starts (72 percent of all defensive snaps), and finished the year with 96 tackles, 1.5 sacks, eight pass defenses, and one forced fumble. Casillas was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the New Orleans Saints after the 2009 NFL Draft. He has played for the Saints (2009-11), Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2013-14), and Patriots (2014). The Giants signed him as a free agent in March 2015. Casillas lacks ideal size and has issues against the run at times, but he is a good athlete with fine speed and performs well in coverage. Caillas does not make many impact plays and is not much of a blitzer (6.5 career sacks).

B.J. Goodson was drafted by the Giants in the 4th round of the 2016 NFL Draft. He played in 15 regular-season games with no starts, playing in one percent of defensive snaps. Goodson finished his rookie season with nine tackles and one forced fumble. Goodson is a big, strong, physical linebacker who plays the run better than the pass. He is a big hitter and good tackler. To become a complete player, Goodson has to improve his pass coverage. Goodson lacks ideal speed and agility.

Devon Kennard played in every game with nine regular-season starts, playing in 47 percent of all defensive snaps. He finished 2016 with 61 tackles, one sack, one pass defense, and one forced fumble. Kennard was drafted in the 5th round of the 2014 NFL Draft by the Giants. He missed playing time in 2014 (four games with hamstring and toe injuries) and 2015 (seven games with hamstring and foot injuries). Kennard is a big, strong linebacker who is a bit of a DE/LB ‘tweener. In fact, the Giants will use him at defensive end in pass rush situations. Kennard plays the run well and can get heat on the quarterback, but he is not as strong in coverage. To date, he has not put up big numbers or made many big plays. Kennard has been somewhat injury prone.

Calvin Munson was signed by the Giants as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2017 NFL Draft. Three-year starter who was a team leader at SDSU. Munson has good size, but lacks ideal agility. He is a better run defender than in pass coverage or blitzing. Smart, physical, aggressive, instinctive, and productive.

Curtis Grant was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the San Diego Chargers after the 2015 NFL Draft. He has spent time with the Chargers (2015), Falcons (2015), Titans (2016), Raiders (2016), and 49ers (2016). Grant was signed by the Giants to a reserve/future contract in January 2017. Grant is a well-built, physical linebacker whose instincts and agility have been questioned. He plays the run better than the pass. Grant was considered the #1 inside linebacking prospect coming out of high school.

Deontae Skinner was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the New England Patriots after the 2014 NFL Draft. He has spent time with the Patriots (2014-2015) and Eagles (2015-2016). He also spent time on both the Giants’ Practice Squad and 53-man roster in 2016. The Giants cut him in before the season in September 2017, re-signed him for a few days, cut him again, and then re-signed him again in November off of the Practice Squad of the Oakland Raiders. Skinner has decent size and agility, but lacks speed.

The Giants re-signed Kelvin Sheppard in November 2017. Sheppard started 11-of-16 regular-season games at middle linebacker for the Giants in 2016, playing 39 percent of defensive snaps. Sheppard finished the year with 50 tackles and two pass defenses. The Giants chose not to re-sign him free agency during the offseason. Sheppard was originally drafted in the 3rd round of the 2011 NFL Draft by the Buffalo Bills. He was traded to the Indianapolis Colts in April 2013 and signed with the Dolphins in September 2014 and Giants in April 2016. Sheppard is more of a two-down linebacker who plays the run better than the pass. While he has good size, Sheppard lacks ideal overall athletic ability. Sheppard does not make many big plays.

The Giants signed Akeem Ayers in November 2017. The 28-year old, 6’3”, 247-pound Ayers was originally drafted in the 2nd round of the 2011 NFL Draft by the Tennessee Titans. He has spent time with the Titans (2011-2014), New England Patriots (2014), St. Louis Rams (2015), and Indianapolis Colts (2016). Ayers has started 57 of the 91 regular-season games he has played in, with 15.5 sacks, four interceptions, and four forced fumbles.

Trevor Bates was signed to the Practice Squad in late October 2017. Bates was originally drafted in the 7th round of the 2016 NFL Draft by the Indianapolis Colts. He has spent time with the Colts (2016) and New England Patriots (2016-2017). He has only played in one regular-season game, with the Colts in 2016. Bates has good size (6’2”, 247 pounds) but lacks ideal overall athleticism for the position.

Ishaq Williams was injured/waived and then placed on Injured Reserve in May 2017 after needing surgery on one of his knees. The Giants originally signed Williams after he impressed as a tryout player during the May 2016 mini-camp. Williams had been out of football since 2013 after being implicated in an academic dishonesty scandal at Notre Dame. Williams was signed to the Practice Squad in September 2016 and the 53-man roster in December 2016. He did not play in any games. Williams has a nice combination of size and overall athletic ability.

Mark Herzlich was placed on Injured Reserve on September 2, 2017 with a neck injury (burner). Herzlich was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Giants after the 2011 NFL Draft. He has started 17 regular-season games in his six seasons with the Giants, eight of which were in 2014. Herzlich played in 14 regular-season games in 2016, missing two with a concussion. He finished with seven tackles on defense. Herzlich has very good size but is a sub-par athlete for the position. He is a good run defender, but struggles in coverage and is not much of a blitzer. Herzlich is a good special teams player.

The Giants placed J.T. Thomas on Injured Reserve in late September 2017 with a groin injury. Thomas was originally drafted in the 6th round of the 2011 NFL Draft by the Chicago Bears. The Bears waived him in August 2013 and he was claimed off of waivers by the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Giants signed Thomas in March 2015. In 2015 with the Giants, Thomas played in 12 games with 11 starts, missing four games with an ankle injury. The Giants placed Thomas on Injured Reserve in September 2016 after he suffered ligament damage to his left knee in the regular-season opener. Thomas lacks ideal size, but he is a good athlete who runs well. Versatile, Thomas can play all three linebacker positions. However, he does not many impact plays and is better suited as a reserve. He also can’t seem to stay healthy. Thomas is a good special teams player.

Nigel Harris was placed on Injured Reserve with a rib injury in November 2017.  The 6’2”, 230-pound Harris was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the San Diego Chargers after the 2017 NFL Draft. The Giants claimed Harris off of waivers from the Chargers in October 2017. Skinner played in seven regular-season games in 2017, with one start with the Chargers.

Keenan Robinson was placed on Injured Reserve in November 2017 with a quad injury. Robinson played in six games this season with three starts and had 32 tackles. He missed the season’s first two games with a concussion. Robinson was originally drafted in the 4th round of the 2012 NFL Draft by the Washington Redskins, where he missed time in 2012 (four games with right pectoral tear), 2013 (entire season with left pectoral tear), 2014 (three games with a knee injury), and 2015 (four games with a shoulder injury). The Giants signed him as a free agent in March 2016. In 2016, Robinson officially only started 6-of-16 regular-season games, but he was second in playing time on the team among all linebackers (71 percent of all defensive snaps). Robinson finished 2016 with 83 tackles and seven pass defenses. Robinson has decent size and is a good athlete who runs well. Versatile, he can play inside and outside linebacker. Robinson is more of a run-and-hit linebacker than stout run defender at the point-of-attack. Robinson is solid in pass coverage. He only has 1.5 career sacks and has been injury prone. Robinson does not make many impact plays.

Cornerbacks:

In his first season with the Giants, Janoris Jenkins had his best season to date, being voted to his first Pro Bowl and his first All-Pro (second-team) selection. Jenkins started every game, except for missing one game due to a back injury, and finished the season with 49 tackles, one sack, 18 pass defenses, three interceptions, and one forced fumble. Jenkins was originally drafted in the 2nd round of the 2012 NFL Draft by the St. Louis Rams. The Giants signed him as unrestricted free agent in March 2016. Jenkins is an average-sized corner with excellent speed and quickness. He is a confident, instinctive coverman who has gotten better each year and has developed into an elite shut-down corner. Jenkins plays well in both man and zone coverage. He plays with swagger.

The Giants drafted Eli Apple in the 1st round of the 2016 NFL Draft. He missed two games with hamstring and groin injuries, but surprisingly started 11 of the 14 regular-season games he played in. Apple finished the season with 51 tackles, seven pass defenses, one interception, and one forced fumble. Apple combines good size with excellent overall athletic ability, speed, and quickness. He flashes as a physical run defender and tackler, but needs to become more consistent in that area. Apple had a bit of an up-and-down rookie season in coverage. While he mostly handled his opponent, there were times when he gave up big plays. Apple makes a lot contact with receivers in coverage and he needs to continue to work on his technique. He has a big upside and looks to be developing into a fine player.

Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie (DRC) had another strong year for the Giants, being named second-team All-Pro. He missed one game with a groin injury but started nine of the 15 regular-season games he played in, taking most of his snaps inside at the slot corner position. DRC finished the year with 49 tackles, one sack, 21 pass defenses, six interceptions, and one forced fumble. Rodgers-Cromartie was originally drafted in the 1st round of the 2008 NFL Draft by the Arizona Cardinals. He was traded to the Philadelphia Eagles in 2011 and signed with the Broncos as an unrestricted free agent in 2013 and the Giants in 2014. Rodgers-Cromartie combines superb size and overall athletic skills, including speed, size, and leaping ability. Rodgers-Cromartie is one of the better cover corners in the NFL and capable of shutting down even top wide receivers. He has improved his toughness as a hitter and tackler. Rodgers-Cromartie made the Pro Bowl in 2009 and in 2015, the latter as an alternate. While he has not missed many games, DRC seems to battle a lot of nagging injuries.

Ross Cockrell was acquired by trade by the Giants from the Pittsburgh Steelers in early September 2017 for a conditional 7th round draft pick. The 6’0”, 191-pound Cockrell was originally drafted by the Buffalo Bills in the 4th round of the 2014 NFL Draft. The Bills cut Cockrell in August 2015 and he then signed with the Steelers. In two seasons with the Steelers, Cockrell played in 31 regular-season games with 23 starts. He started all 16 games in 2016 and finished the year with 62 tackles and 14 pass defenses. He had two interceptions with the Steelers in 2015. Cockrell struggled with the Steelers this preseason.

Donte Deayon began the season on the Giants Practice Squad and was signed to the 53-man roster in October 2017. The Giants originally signed Deayon as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2016 NFL Draft. He was added to the Practice Squad in September 2016 and placed on the Practice Squad/Injured Reserve in October 2016 with an unknown injury. Deayon is a fluid, dimunitive corner with very good quickness and leaping ability. He is tough and confident, and can play the slot position. However, his lack of size hurts him both in coverage and especially against the run.

Brandon Dixon was signed to the Practice Squad in October 2017. Dixon was originally drafted in the 6th round of the 2014 NFL Draft by the New York Jets. The 5’11”, 203-pound Dixon has spent time with the Jets (2014), Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2014), Seattle Seahawks (2015), Indianapolis Colts (2015), New England Patriots (2015), New Orleans Saints (2015-2016), and Pittsburgh Steelers (2016-2017). Despite his travels around the NFL, Dixon has only played in 14 games with no starts with the Buccaneers in 2014. Originally regarded as a small-school developmental prospect, Dixon has a nice combination of size and overall athletic ability.

Safeties:

In his second season, Landon Collins had a break-out year, being voted to his first Pro Bowl and first-team All-Pro. Collins started every game and finished the year with 125 tackles, four sacks, 13 pass defenses, and five interceptions. Collins was drafted in the 2nd round of the 2015 NFL Draft by the Giants. He is a big, tough, physical safety who lacks ideal quickness and recovery speed. Collins is good hitter and tackler and plays the run very well. He dramatically improved his play against the pass in 2016 and has rapidly developed into one of the best safeties in the NFL.

Having won the starting free safety position in the preseason, Darian Thompson missed virtually the entire season after suffering a lisfranc foot injury in Week 2. Thompson tried to return in November, suffered a setback in practice, and was placed on Injured Reserve. The Giants drafted Thompson in the 3rd round of the 2016 NFL Draft. Thompson has a nice combination of smarts, maturity, size, and overall athletic ability. Thompson has natural cover skills and makes plays on the football in coverage. It remains to be seen how much the lisfranc injury affects his career.

The Giants originally signed Andrew Adams as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2016 NFL Draft. Adams was signed to the Practice Squad, and then the 53-man roster in September 2016 after injuries hit the safety position hard. Force-fed into the starting line-up, Adams played in 14 regular-season games with 13 starts. He finished the year with 46 tackles, five pass defenses, and one interception. Adams lacks ideal height and speed but he is a well-built, athletic safety with good quickness. While Adams failed to make many plays on the ball in coverage, he was surprisingly reliable in that opposing offenses did not exploit him as much as would have been expected. That said, Adams saw his playing time decrease at the very end of the season in favor of Leon Hall.

Nat Berhe had his second injury-plagued season in a row in 2016. Berhe missed nine regular-season games with two concussions. He ended up playing in seven games with two starts, finishing with 21 tackles, one pass defense, and one forced fumble. Berhe was drafted in the 5th round of the 2014 NFL Draft by the Giants. He played in all 16 games as a rookie, mostly on special teams. But he missed all of 2015 due to a blood clot in his calf. Berhe lacks ideal size and speed, but he is a smart, physical, and aggressive defender who hits hard. The two concussions combined with his physical style of play cloud his NFL future.

Ryan Murphy is currently on the Giants Practice Squad. Murphy was originally drafted in the 7th round of the 2015 NFL Draft by the Seattle Seahawks. The Seahawks waived him in their final round of cuts in September 2015. He spent time on the Practice Squad of the Denver Broncos in both 2015 and 2016. The Giants signed Murphy to the Practice Squad in late December 2016. Murphy has a nice combination of size and athletic ability. He will hit and tackle.

Punters, Kickers, and Snappers:

Punter Brad Wing had a strong season in 2016, averaging 46.2 yards per punt (40.9 yard net). He had 28 kicks downed inside the 20-yard line. Wing was also named “NFC Special Teams Player of the Week” twice. An Australian, the left-footed Wing was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Philadelphia Eagles after the 2013 NFL Draft. He did not make the team but he made the Pittsburgh Steelers roster in 2014. The Giants acquired Wing from the Steelers by trade for a conditional 7th-round draft pick in September 2015. Wing combines a strong leg with good directional placement skills. He also holds for both field goals and place kicks.

Place kicker Aldrick Rosas was signed by the Giants to a reserve/future contract in January 2017. Rosas was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Tennessee Titans after the 2016 NFL Draft. The Titans cut Rosas in early September before the season started. Rosas is a strong-legged kicker who made 25 of his 32 field goal attempts during his college career. Over half of his kickoffs resulted in touchbacks.

Zak DeOssie is one of the NFL’s most consistent long snappers, being voted to the Pro Bowl in 2008 and 2010. DeOssie was drafted as a linebacker by the Giants in the 4th round of the 2007 NFL Draft. He is now strictly a special teams player. In his 10 NFL seasons, DeOssie has only missed four games (all in 2015 with a wrist injury). Aside from his long snapping duties, DeOssie also excels in punt coverage.