One of the more forgettable parts of the season for the New York Giants was the signing of Jonathan Stewart, who came over from Carolina and was originally projected to split carries with rookie Saquon Barkley. Some imagined that Barkley would take a longer time getting used to the speed of the NFL game, and that a veteran presence would be needed to take away some of the pressure.
Those predictions turned out to be wrong. Stewart finished the season with only six total rushes while Barkley was one of the top rushers in the entire league, finishing only behind Ezekiel Elliot in total yards as well as finishing third in NFL history for all-purpose yards for a rookie running back.
An injury ensured that Stewart didn’t play beyond the first three games, and the signing is regarded as one of the moves that didn’t work out, despite a successful first year for general manager Dave Gettleman, who brought in several players who should have long-term roles.
Former Jets linebacker Bart Scott has one idea about why the signing really happened, however. “I told you what Jonathan was when he got here. He was the snitch. But you have to be healthy to be able to snitch because you’re not in the locker room to tell Gettleman what’s going on,” Scott said on WFAN Sports Radio.
Stewart and Gettleman were on the same team, of course, when they were both with the Panthers immediately before joining the Giants. Stewart was with the team from 2008 to 2017, but the Giants seemed to sign him right as his career took a turn towards decline.
Of course, Stewart is still with the Giants, so he’ll have a chance to redeem himself and add depth to the backfield behind Saquon Barkley. But based on current circumstances, it seems unlikely that his role will be to monitor the locker room for Dave Gettleman. After ending the season with 17 rushing yards, there’s definitely more important things to focus on for Stewart at this point.