New York Giants: Saquon Barkley Already Leading Fantasy Mock Drafts

New York Giants running back, Saquon Barkley.

Are you a fan of the New York Giants that would like to have the team’s star running back, Saquon Barkley, on your fantasy team? Unless you happen to have the first overall pick, you just might be out of luck. Barkley was one of the top running backs in the league last season and that’s translated to big expectations this season. That goes for both the realm of the actual game and the realm of fantasy football.

It’s not hard to see why Barkley is so highly rated, thanks to his participation in both the passing and the running games for the Giants, and according to’s Michael Fabiano, there’s no better player in the league for fantasy football than Barkley. In his first five round mock draft of the offseason, Barkley was ranked as the number one overall player.

Here’s what Fabiano had to say about the Giants running back.

Barkley is coming off a historic rookie season that saw him finish first in PPR points among running backs. A touch monster who could tote the rock over 400 times now that the Giants have parted ways with Odell Beckham Jr., Barkley is going to emerge into the consensus No. 1 overall selection at a position that is talented at the top.

Barkley finished last season with numbers that were nearly impossibly good for a rookie on a bad team with a poor offensive line, to the tune of 1,307 rushing yards and 721 receiving yards.

It definitely looks like Barkley will have more tools to succeed this season, playing behind an improved offensive line featuring newly traded for left guard Kevin Zeitler, and, depending on how things go during the rest of the offseason, a possible new face at right tackle.

With things not looking so great this season, Barkley’s greatness may be one of the few things legitimately worth looking forward to this year for fans of the Giants.

New York Yankees Reliever Chad Green Not Fooling Hitters

New York Yankees, Chad Green

At a pivotal point in the game on Saturday, the New York Yankees were down 2-1 to the Orioles, Chad Green entered the game and was not able to hold the Orioles scoreless.  In one inning of work, he gave up one run on one hit with only two strikeouts.  Brock Hammond of notes that Green threw just two off-speed pitches among his 18 offerings to Oriole hitters – proof, perhaps, that as good as Green’s fastball can be, hitters know what to expect from him and are getting hits a lot more often than they were back in ’17 when he was absolute lights out for the Yankees.

It is no secret, perhaps, to opposing teams that Green doesn’t rely on his secondary pitches to get hitters out.  In 2018, he relied on the fastball more than he had in 2017 with less success.  The exit velocity, barrel % and HR/9 rates all went up, according to Hammond, and in the case of HR/9, doubled in ’18.

Chad Green relies on his primary pitch to get batters out:

In 2018, Green used a slider as his go-to secondary pitch which resulted in hitters batting over .400 and slugging .655 off of it.  Late last season, he brought back his splitter as a change of pace, Hammond says of the splitter:

“That’s a pretty solid pitch, and it’s no coincidence Green’s numbers improved when he started throwing it more last August. Developing trust and consistency with his secondary offerings is going to be key for him in 2019.”

However, already in his first game of the season, Green enters the game and relies almost exclusively on his fastball against Oriole hitters, and the result is disappointing.

The Yankees have also used Green in an opener role this spring and the result was the same, he allowed a run in one inning, only this time it was in the first inning.

It would appear that Chad Green needs a new approach to improve in 2018 and to succeed in 2019.

Whether his role out of the bullpen is as relief or as an opener, Green appears to be at a crux in his career, where he must adjust to hitters sitting on his fastball.  One of two things needs to happen, or maybe both, Green needs to rediscover the above-average spin rate and control that made him practically unhittable in ’17 and develop his secondary pitches, such as the splitter, to become out pitches.

Green is still an elite reliever in this league, but to achieve consistent results with his pitches, he will need to make some changes and soon.  The Yankees can ill afford to have Green give up runs, especially, in a game in which they are trailing 2-1.

Look for Green to make some adjustments this season with his pitch selection and for him to increase his use of his off speed pitches to keep hitters honest at the plate.


New York Giants: Saquon Barkley Not The Only Young Leader On Offense

The New York Giants have been surrounded by controversy in the media recently. A lot of the controversy stems from the Giants’ quarterback position. Eli Manning is 38 years old, meaning the Giants need to find their next franchise quarterback sooner than later.

However, Eli’s age is not the only reason that fans and analysts want to see the Giants find a new quarterback. Many have been placing the blame of last season’s 5-11 finish on Eli Manning. Many members of the New York Giants have been coming out and defending their quarterback, like head coach Pat Shurmur and superstar running back Saquon Barkley.

Barkley spoke out and defended Eli Manning and was instantly praised as a leader. Being Barkley is heading into his second NFL season, it is great to see him be such a vocal leader this early in his career. However, Saquon Barkley is not the only young leader on the New York Giants’ offense.

Will Hernandez Is Proving To Be A Leader

Saquon Barkley was the Giants’ 1st round selection in the 2018 NFL Draft. Their 2nd round selection was the powerful left guard Will Hernandez out of Texas El-Paso.

Will Hernandez was a tremendous acquisition for the Giants. Hernandez was arguably the best player on the Giants’ offensive line in his rookie season. In 2018, Hernandez finished with the 2nd highest rookie grade at his position according to Pro Football Focus with an overall grade of 65.8.

After Saquon Barkley’s public defense for his quarterback, Will Hernandez decided to do the same via Instagram:

It is clear that the Giants have not given up on Eli Manning just yet, even if the media has. Not the team brass, the coaches, or the players. Eli Manning still has respect from his team and has their full support. It is good to see the young Giants players show respect to a Giants legend like Manning.

Showing public support for a heavily scrutinized teammate is step one to becoming a team leader. Will Hernandez and Saquon Barkley will probably both wear captain’s patches one day. The lasting impact from these players as performers and captains will be a true testament to how good Dave Gettleman’s 2018 NFL Draft truly was.

How the New York Giants can Bolster Multiple Positions in the 2019 NFL Draft

New York Giants, Eli Manning

Every player has a different valuation placed on their head during draft time, whether it be a current player in the NFL or a prospect looking to take the big leap. Teams have their specific needs and value their own players accordingly to determine who is worth keeping or letting go. For the New York Giants, it was star wideout Odell Beckham Jr., which will influence the upcoming draft significantly.

The Giants acquired the No. 17 overall pick, which gives them the opportunity to grab two top talents and apply them directly to positions of weakness. The defense seems like the most logical allocation of draft capital, but the quarterback position is still in need of assistance.

The New York Giants will stick with their trusty steed:

With Eli Manning set to enjoy the 2019 season as the starting signal caller, it gives the Giants an opportunity to groom a young passer behind him. Now, the misconception could be that it ‘has’ to be a draft pick.

This fact is what makes Josh Rosen so attractive for Big Blue. They can essentially grab a top 10 pick from a quarterback-heavy 2018 draft and still have walked away with Saquon Barkley. Most reports have stated that the Arizona Cardinals are  looking to select Kyler Murray with the No. 1 overall pick, which implies Rosen being shopped.

It all comes down to what Arizona wants in return, as they seem to have a first-round selection placed on Rosen’s head, and with the No. 17 overall pick, the Giants could grab him.

Personally, I wouldn’t give anything more than a second round pick for Rosen. The Giants have the No. 37 pick available to utilize, but that’s the most capital they should be willing to part with. If Arizona is truly set on sending Rosen to the highest bidder, Gettleman should wait it out until his value drops – once word is out that Murray will go No. 1 it will force them to accept the highest offer, and the Giants’ second rounder is higher than San Diego’s or New England’s, the two teams rumored to have interest in the passer.

What grabbing Rosen would mean for the New York Giants:

Not only would Rosen be in line to be Manning’s successor, but it would solidify the most important position on the field and allow the Giants to draft two premium defensive players.

Players like linebacker Devin White, edge rusher Ed Oliver or Josh Allen, and even defensive tackle Quinnen Williams could drop to the No. 6 overall pick. Any of these options would make an immediate impact on the team.

Check out our latest mock draft for an idea defensive scenario.

A young defensive core and upgraded offensive line would put the team in a good position moving forward. Laying the foundation to build on is nearly complete, and this offseason could be the start of something special.

New York Giants: The Key to Finding a Franchise Quarterback

New York Giants, Pat Shurmur, James Bettcher

When it comes to predicting who will become an impact player at quarterback in the NFL, most look towards physical attributes – arm strength, footwork, accuracy, etc. These are all essential factors that make up a starting passer at the professional level, but there’s far more that plays into the equation, especially for the New York Giants.

As the 2019 NFL Draft approach and the Giants are expected to find Eli Manning’s successor, it begs the question – who’s the best option available?

Some would say Dwayne Haskins and his 50 touchdown passes in 2018, or Kyler Murray with his dual-threat capabilities. Not many look towards options like Daniel Jones or Will Grier as top prospects, but it isn’t about the biased fan’s opinion, it’s about head coach Pat Shurmur and finding the exact fit for his offensive scheme.

Let’s play a game – below, I will describe a quarterback’s draft profile and you have to guess who it is. I will leave the answer toward the bottom of the article, but comment who you think this description portrays without looking first.

This quarterback is a mechanical thrower with solid production in college. His skills center around making the right decisions as he’s accurate and decisive when moving through his progressions. While he’s undersized at 6’1″, 208-pounds, he has the ability to make up for his lack of size with great vision and mental development. Additionally, he benefitted a lot from the spread offense he played in during college. The question regarding him is – can his talent translate to the next level?

Pretty vague, huh? This player went undrafted. So, while you’re scouring draft profiles and doing minimal research on the quarterbacks available, remember that quarterbacks fit a scheme – ask Tom Brady or Drew Brees. This player is a playoff caliber QB, and he did it while under Shurmur.

Maybe you have guessed who it is, but I won’t reveal his name until the end anyway.

What’s the point of this?

The Giants aren’t going into this draft looking to find a quarterback that fits the bill tangibly, they’re looking for a prospect to fit a specific scheme. The front office is committed to Shurmur and his methods and being that he’s the offense guru, they have to trust he knows which quarterback to take.

Essentially, he’s the key to finding the next franchise signal caller.

The player mentioned above was Case Keenum, who saw his completion percentage drop five points and his TD-INT ratio went from 22-7 in 2018 to 18-15 in 2019. Everything about his game took a major hit after leaving Shurmur’s offense, so we have to assume, maybe it isn’t the quarterback as much as it is finding the right ‘player’ to operate the offense appropriately.

That being said, we must have faith in the fact that Shurmur will find the right man to take over for Manning, whether it be Haskins, Grier, or even Josh Rosen.


New York Giants: Ownership Confirms Noncommittal Stance On Quarterbacks

Will the New York Giants draft a quarterback? Will they decide to have enough faith in Eli Manning to not even start thinking about his future successor? Or will the team try to make a run at a player like Russell Wilson in free agency next year and find their future starter that way? No one but perhaps the team ownership and front office knows the answer to that right now, and it looks like things are going to stay that way through the entire offseason.

General Manager Dave Gettleman has been noncommittal when it comes to the subject but general managers and team owners don’t always agree. That, however, doesn’t appear to be the case when it comes to Gettleman and the Giants ownership. Co-owner Steve Tisch talked to the team website this week and said that the team is looking at all of the options.

One specific option, though, doesn’t seem to be jumping out ahead of the others just yet.

“If it’s possible [to land a franchise quarterback], that would be a pretty good situation. But that’s not going to be forced; it’s not going to be Gettleman’s marching orders,” said Tisch. “There’s no mandate. But we’re going to look at a lot of options, certainly in the draft going forward with potential trades.”

Trading for a quarterback, though, seems hard when the Giants have limited assets right now. The team already traded away star wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr., and several big name defensive players that were on the roster at the beginning of last season, such as Landon Collins, Damon Harrison, and Olivier Vernon are already on other teams either because of trade or free agency.

Many sources rate the Giants as one of the bottom teams in the league, so it’s hard to see who the Giants could send away for a decent quarterback. It looks like the draft and free agency are the main two options, and the team holds both the 6th and the 17th picks this year.

But while Tisch stated that the team won’t necessarily draft a quarterback, he did say something interesting. Specifically, that Eli Manning would eventually take on a mentor role.

“And I think when he does take on the role of mentor, he will be very, very effective.”

If Manning is acting as a mentor, it likely means that the quarterback playing behind him is newer and less experienced. Could it be a sign that the Giants to intend to have a younger, non-veteran quarterback on the roster, perhaps one that’s been recently drafted?

Time will tell, but it’s clear that the team is in a tough spot with a limited amount of time to figure out their future and limited options to do so.

Andujar with missed opportunities as Yankees drop first game of season

New York Yankees, Miguel Andujar

In his first start as a Yankee, southpaw James Paxton pitched well, giving up two runs (one earned) off of four hits with five strikeouts. However, he was credited with a loss as the Yankees couldn’t get much going on offense, dropping the second game against the Orioles by a score of 5 to 3.

Despite having 10 hits, the Yankees only managed to score three runs while going 3-of-9 with runners in scoring position. Their defense sure didn’t help any, having three errors on the game.

The little offense they had:

In the fourth inning, DJ LeMahieu punched one up the middle, barely strong enough to get through, scoring Gleyber Torres.

In the sixth inning, the Orioles put up two runs off a single by Dwight Smith and a throwing error by Gary Sanchez on a double steal attempt. With runners on first and second, Sanchez threw to second on the steal attempt. The throw was in plenty of time, just off target. This would knock Paxton out of the game.

An inning later, Baltimore got one more, this time off of Chad Green. Rio Ruiz doubled, then later scored off a single by Jesus Sucre. Sucre led the Orioles, going 3-for-4 with three RBIs.

In the ninth inning, Yankee reliever Jonathan Holder made a mess, starting after an error by DJ LeMahieu. With runners on the corners with one out, Sucre knocked one down the left field line, stopping at second and clearing the bases while making the score 5 to 1.

The Yankees sure tried to come back in the bottom of the ninth. Troy Tulowitzki led off with an opposite field home run, then LeMahieu followed with a double. Gardner hit a hard liner to center that was caught for the first out, however Aaron Judge kept it going with a hard single. After a full count strikeout by Giancarlo Stanton, Luke Voit hit a high fly ball that barely dropped in with the outfield playing back. That scored a run making it 5 to 3, but Miguel Andujar struck out on a 1-2 slider to end the game.

Andujar ruined their two biggest opportunities

Way back in the first inning, Baltimore starting pitcher Nate Karns was in no mood to deal with the big boys. After Gardner was retired to start the inning, Karns walked Judge, Stanton, and Voit to load the bases. After taking a low fastball for a ball, Andujar hit it back to Karns who threw it to Sucre behind the plate, then Trey Mancini at first for a 1-2-3 double-play.

Now in the ninth inning, the Yankees had Judge on third and Voit on first with Andujar up to bat. After swinging at a 95 MPH fastball for strike one, Oriole reliever Mike Wright threw three straight sliders. Andujar laid off the first one but swung at the next two to end the game.

Andujar finished 1-for-5 with two strikeouts on the afternoon.

The Yankees finish the series with the Orioles on Sunday afternoon at 1:05PM in the Bronx. The game will be televised on YES Network and Fox Sports Go.


New York Giants Could Snag Dynamic Linebacker In First Round of NFL Draft

The New York Giants should consider Devin Bush in the 2019 NFL Draft.

Finding a dynamic complement to New York Giants linebacker Alec Ogletree in the 2019 NFL Draft should be a priority in the first-round. The Giants acquired the No. 17 overall pick in the Odell Beckham Jr. trade, which allows them to address another position of weakness with premier talent.

Utilizing the added selection to bolster the middle of the defense would be an efficient move for Big Blue, as fourth-year player B.J. Goodson has failed to make a significant impact since his inception. One option the Giants should look into is Michigan defender, Devin Bush.

The New York Giants might have to settle for the second-best option:

While it’s unlikely Devin White, the star linebacker from LSU, falls to the No. 6 pick in the draft, Bush offers value in the middle of the round. One of the more intriguing aspects of his game is his ability to drop back into coverage. Bush is a pure “WILL” inside linebacker, opposite Ogletree who plays in the middle of the defense as the “Mike.”

Bush’s unique athleticism and ability to cover running backs and tight ends efficiently offer a different type of skill set to the Giants. Having struggled in recent years in regard to covering tight ends, adding a player like Bush makes complete sense – it contributes to the secondary and helps contain premier pass-catching running backs. has Devin Bush graded out as an instant starter – despite a lack of size at 5’11”, 234-pounds, there’s room for growth. The cons primarily center around his tangible traits – missing tackles due to lack of length and being caught up in blocks as a consequence of lack of size.

This is just a short clip of Bush’s skill-set. He’s very quick to identify the ball carrier and make a play on the ball. His lack of size is apparent, but his burst of energy and speed can make up for the deficiency.

Now, take a look at this range:

Incredible speed to reach the boundary-bound runner, chasing him down and keeping the gain to about two-yards with nobody beyond Bush. This is the value he offers in terms of sideline-to-sideline range, which is essential for a linebacker at the next level.

Based on his clear-cut abilities, Bush seems to have the exact skill set to fit well into the Giant’s 3-4 defense. Aside from his pairing with Ogletree, I feel as though he would be deadly lined up alongside Jabrill Peppers.

New York Yankees April Schedule- Breaking Down Who Lies Ahead

New York Yankees slugger Aaron Judge.

The New York Yankees overall have a pretty easy schedule to start 2019, playing the majority of their games at home against rather poor teams. That’s good for the team so they can get rust off and overcome their injuries. Let’s take a look at their schedule through May 1st.

March 28, 30-31 (Vs. Baltimore)

After a 7-2 opening day win, the Yankees take on the Orioles for two more games, as the Yankees are looking to stack-up wins early. Baltimore is in a rebuilding stage, and will likely perform very poorly like last season, where they went 47-115. These are games they need to win.

April 1-3 (Vs. Detroit)

The Yankees then stay at home for three more games to take on the Detroit Tigers. The Tigers are nowhere near as bad as the Orioles, but are still in a rebuilding phase. The Tigers didn’t make a huge splash in the offseason, but they did sign Josh Harrison. Miguel Cabrera has returned from injury and can provide some power along with Nick Castellanos. Again, three games they must win.

April 4, 6-7 (At Baltimore)

The Yankees then hit the road for the first time to take on the Orioles again, this time in their home opener. Another three games that the Yankees can’t afford to lose.

April 8-10 (At Houston)

After they visit Baltimore, the Yankees head down south to face the 2017 World Champions and 2018 AL runner-up Houston Astros. The Astros presumably lost Dallas Keuchel (still not signed) and lost Charlie Morton to Tampa Bay, but signed Michael Brantley and Robinson Chirinos. This could possibly be a playoff matchup come October. Last season, the Yankees won the season series 5-2 and hope to do the same in 2019.

April 12-14 (Vs. Chicago White Sox)

The Yankees then head back home to take on the Chicago White Sox. These again are games they can’t lose. The White Sox signed Yonder Alonso, a relative of Manny Machado in an attempt to draw in the star shortstop, but it don’t work out too well. Alonso was really their only significant signing, and they are led by first base slugger Jose Abreu. They were 62-100 last year, and are looking to rebuild as well.

April 16-17 (Vs. Boston)

Now it gets fun. The Yankees then take on our favorite team, the Boston Red Sox. The Red Sox didn’t do much this past offseason, re-signing Nathan Eovaldi while losing Joe Kelly and Craig Kimbrel, giving them one of the worst bullpens this year. Everyone on that team overachieved last year, so they should come back down to earth this year, right?

April 18-21 (Vs. Kansas City)

The Yankees then host the Royals for four more must win games. The Royals are continuing to rebuild and are at about the same part of their rebuild as the Tigers. They signed speedy outfielder Billy Hamilton, but stayed pretty quiet otherwise. The team had just 58 wins last season.

April 22-25 (At Los Angeles Angels)

The Yankees head out west for the first time to take on the Angels, who are looking to finally make it back to the playoffs. Not only did they lock up Mike Trout for 12 years, they signed a solid catcher in Jonathan Lucroy, dominant reliever Cody Allen, and slugger Justin Bour. The Angels have enough to make it in, but not to win the AL West. It may come down to them and the Rays for a wildcard spot.

April 26-28 (At San Francisco)

The Yankees start interleague play on the road against the Giants. The Giants had a pretty quiet offseason and they are one of those teams who will be decent this year, say .500, but not good enough for the postseason. These are a few games the Yankees would like to have.

April 30- May 1 (At Arizona)

The Yankees then continue interleague play by playing the Arizona Diamondbacks. They lost Paul Goldschmidt in a trade to the Cardinals, and lost Steven Souza Jr. for the season due to an injury just a few days ago. They did get Adam Jones and Wilmer Flores, but won’t have enough to compete for a playoff spot.

My guess at the Yankees record through May 1st: 23-7

New York Giants: Eyeing The Positives in a Beckham-less Giants Offense

New York Giants, Saquon Barkley

The New York Giants organization changed drastically the night of March 12th when General Manager Dave Gettleman traded away star player Odell Beckham Jr. Whether that change is positive or negative remains to be seen, the reality of the situation is that it’s simply too early to come to any rational conclusion.

The claims suggesting the Giants will be in a worse position after trading Beckham are premature considering we are still 6 months away from watching the 2019 Giants hit the field on Sunday.

One could argue that the Giants offense will be just fine without Beckham considering that the offense performed better in the four games he missed due to a season-ending quad injury. Despite an abysmal shutout to the Titans in week 15, the Giants still managed to average 26.4ppg. That production came out to over a 4 point increase from their 22.2ppg when Beckham was in the lineup. Erasing the outlier in week 15, the Giants averaged a total of 33ppg in the 4 other games they played without Odell to end the season.

It has been proven time and time again that a star receiver is not a necessity to a championship roster. What’s more important is to distribute that wealth among a variety of solid NFL players, modeling the New England Patriots.

A Look At What’s Left:

For starters, there’s All-Pro running back sensation Saquon Barkley, who is now considered the face of the franchise with Beckham’s absence. There is not much else that needs to be said about the Rookie of the Year and Ground player of the Year… The Giants landed an absolute stud. Now let’s consider the following:

Love it or hate it, what is often forgot about the offense is that former GM Jerry Reese prioritized drafting skill position players during his tenure. Electric tight end Evan Engram (‘17 Rd1) and receiver Sterling Shepard (‘16 Rd2) have both shown tremendous upside while wearing blue. When healthy, Evan Engram is a top tight end in the NFL. For the 2018 season, his grade of 76.5 was the third highest on the offense. Trailing only Odell Beckham (90) and Saquon Barkley (85.9), according to Pro Football Focus.

Engram would have graded much higher had the season been split in two. From weeks 1-8, while plagued with all sorts of injury, Engram’s average PFF grade was a 54.8. After the bye week, a healthier Engram performed at an elite level, earning a 91.7 overall grade for his performance during weeks 9-17.

As for Shepard, he finished 5th on the offense with a PFF grade of 67.3. Aside from his receiving, it is also his effort in blocking which makes him a valuable piece to the offense. Check out his key blocks against the Redskins when the Giants cruised to a 40-17 win in week 14:

The Addition of Golden Tate:

After letting the dust settle the first day of free agency, the Giants made their splash signing established wide receiver Golden Tate to a four-year deal, worth up to $37.5 million with $23 million guaranteed. Tate, who essentially played on a half-season rental for the Eagles, played his previous four seasons with the Detroit Lions. In Detroit, he was a force to be reckoned with tallying over 90 catches in each of those years. Tate finished the 2018 season with 74 catches and 4 touchdowns. While playing in two separate offenses, Tate earned a respectable 71.1 PFF grade.

No wide receiver has accumulated more yards after the catch (1,672) than Tate over the past three seasons, making it obvious why he is widely recognized as the #YACKing.

The Kevin Zeitler Trade:

In perhaps the most successful move of the offseason, the Giants acquired premier right guard Kevin Zeitler from the Cleveland Browns in exchange for edge rusher Olivier Vernon. With trades trending upward in the NFL, this certainly qualified as a win-win for both the Browns and the Giants. The Giants, whom everyone assumed would cut Vernon, got exceptional value from him in Zeitler. The right Guard graded out as PFF’s #1 pass protecting guard in the NFL with a 91.7.

For reference, guards Patrick Omameh and Jamon Brown allowed a combined 39 pressures in only 14 games last year. Zeitler allowed just 11 pressures through 16 starts.

Zeitler brings stability to an offensive line that was already greatly improved from years prior. GM Dave Gettleman has made countless promises to revamp the offensive line, and bringing in an elite guard like Zeitler does just that.

Bottom Line:

While the jury is still out on whether or not the New York Giants need Odell Beckham Jr, it’s more important to understand that the offense is only going to go as far as the offensive line takes them. We have seen over the years that it is not so much the players around Eli, but the ones who protect him that dictate which version of “Eli” we are going to see on a game to game basis.

While a young quarterback is ultimately in the works, the Giants have put themselves in position to have a very respectable supporting cast for whoever is under center in the future.