New York Giants: John Mara Blasts Idea That Team Is Sentimental Over Manning

New York Giants, John Mara

Why is it that the New York Giants show continued faith in Eli Manning, even over the last couple of seasons? Is it because the quarterback is still good enough to meet the standards of the NFL? Is it because they don’t have another option and the safest route right now is to stick with Manning, and not unsettle the only starting caliber player that the Giants have at the position? Or is it because of sentimentality over Manning’s earlier career with the team, which had some much better years?

If you ask co-owner John Mara, the answer would definitely not be sentimentality. Mara rejected those claims this week and claimed that despite being sentimental about Manning, those sentiments don’t play into the team’s football decisions.

But is it really realistic to say that sentiment isn’t one of the factors for Manning being the highest paid player on the team despite not delivering the results expected for that price?

It’s true that everything can’t be blamed on Manning and that the team isn’t going to make the playoffs just by virtue of having a new quarterback if a change is made, and it’s also true that quarterbacks in general make more than other positions, but it’s hard not to wonder if the Giants could be spending their money better elsewhere.

Especially when the rest of the roster doesn’t look like it’s in a state to let Manning make one last run. Rather, it’s a rebuilding year and Manning is one of the last pieces of teams from days gone by.

Whether or not Manning is being overpaid because of past sentiments, however, isn’t the most relevant thing right now. It’s too late for the Giants to make a change to their plans, as Manning has already collected his roster bonus. They seem to have made their decision, and that decision is to go ahead and stick with Manning as starter for at least another year.

We’ll all find out if that decision is the right one or not when the season begins, and we can see just how much Manning can do with the roster that the Giants have right now.

New York Yankees acquire Mike Tauchman, send Tyler Wade to AAA

New York Yankees, Tyler Wade

In what was a surprising move on Saturday, the New York Yankees traded left hand pitcher Phillip Diehl to the Colorado Rockies for outfielder Mike Tauchman. With that move, the Yankees placed Jordan Montgomery on the 60 day IL and sent Tyler Wade to AAA. This is a surprising move for a number of reasons, and unfair to Wade who had a fantastic spring.

Tauchman hasn’t had much success

Mike Tauchman is a 28 year old lefty outfielder who was drafted in the 10th round by the Rockies. He attended Bradley University in his home state of Illinois. Tauchman has struggled in his limited time in the MLB, batting just .253 in 59 career at-bats. His WAR is at -0.8 and his slugging percentage is only at .203. It isn’t like he had a great spring either, he only hit .196 in 46 at-bats.

The player they gave up in the trade, Phillip Diehl, had a pretty solid spring. He had a 4.50 ERA, which may seem kinda high, but this is the highest level he has pitched at in his career, only seeing limited time in AA last season. He started to come up on the Yankees radar for a possible option in two or so years out of the bullpen, but obviously that isn’t the case anymore.

You have to feel bad for Tyler Wade

Though he has also struggled in the MLB, Tyler Wade had a fantastic spring and deserves to be on the opening day roster. Instead, he will be watching from the clubhouse in Scranton. He hit .312 this spring with a .532 slugging percentage, and is very versatile. The team had also used him in pinch-running situations and he can steal bases.

The poor kid was looking for another shot and deserved it, but now has to get off to a good start in AAA. With injuries already a theme in 2019, there is likely a good chance he will be up again in a matter of time.

New York Giants: What Options Remain At Right Tackle?

The New York Giants have holes all over their roster. After a wild free agency period, the Giants managed to create more holes and fill barely any of them. One gaping hole on the roster is at the right tackle position.

After missing out on premier right tackle Daryl Williams in free agency, the Giants were not left with very many options. The Giants need to upgrade the right tackle position as soon as possible. However, their options are running thin.

Free Agency

If the Giants want to sign a right tackle in free agency, they will need to do it soon. The market has really dried up over the past two weeks. The Giants met with a free agent from Minnesota, Mike Remmers. According to his agent, the meeting went well and the team will likely sign Remmers, however, nothing was imminent.

Since then, we have not heard a peep. This leaves some fans wondering when this contract will get done or if it will get done at all. If the Giants are unable to sign Remmers, who would they turn to?

There are a few veteran right tackles sitting on the free agency market. One name the Giants could consider is Jared Veldheer. According to Pro Football Focus, Veldheer is an immediate-impact free agent who played well in 2018 before going down with an injury. He earned a 62.4 overall PFF grade which is much higher than Chad Wheeler’s overall grade of 47.4.

If the Giants end up missing out on Mike Remmers, it would be wise of them to turn their attention towards Jared Veldheer or a prospect in the draft.

NFL Draft

A lot of speculation has begun surrounding the Giants’ 17th overall pick in the 2019 NFL Draft. The pick was acquired via trade from the Cleveland Browns. Many fans and experts have been predicting that the Giants will draft a right tackle at 17 in their respective mock drafts.

A few great tackle options will be available at 17. Names to keep an eye on include Cody Ford, Jonah Williams, and Dalton Risner.

Cody Ford played right tackle for Oklahoma and did a phenomenal job protecting the Heisman Trophy Winner, Kyler Murray. Ford is an excellent pass blocker. He only allowed 8 pressures in 2018 as a full-time starter. Cody is an extremely athletic offensive tackle. He was impressive at the NFL Combine and consistently showed elite agility on tape. This athletic ability might cause a team to move Ford to guard, but if he were to be drafted by the Giants, he would play right tackle.

Jonah Williams is similar to Cody Ford in the sense that teams will consider moving him to guard. This is because Jonah is a bit undersized for the offensive tackle position. Despite this, Williams was a consistently great player during his time at Alabama. Jonah played left tackle in college, however, he could be moved to the right side since the Giants already have Nate Solder. Williams allowed only 10 pressures in 2018 and was also Pro Football Focus’s 3rd ranked run-blocker. Williams has been mocked all over the place from the top 10 to the top 25. If he slides to 17, the Giants will have to consider drafting him.

Dalton Risner is a technically sound offensive tackle prospect out of Kansas State. Risner allowed only 28 pressures on 1,489 pass-blocking snaps in his college career and could step in and start immediately at right tackle for the Giants. He did not face the same type of elite defensive talent that Cody Ford and Jonah Williams faced, however, he was still an elite collegiate offensive tackle. Risner could be an absolute steal for the Giants at 17, or if he falls all the way to the second round (which he might).

Could New York Giants Surprise Everybody With Alternative Quarterback Option?

As the New York Giants continue to do their due diligence with the 2019 QB draft class, it’s becoming clear which prospects they value higher than others, but it’s possible they decide to take an unexpected approach.

With Dwayne Haskins and Kyler Murray slotted in as the No. 1 and 2 options at passer, the Giants would be taking a massive risk with any other alternative, unless they find them to be a perfect fit for the offense. After all, Pat Shurmur turned the undrafted Case Keenum into a playoff caliber signal caller in his system.

Who could the New York Giants target as an alternative option?

One prospect that stands out to me is West Virginia QB, Will Grier. At 6’2″ and 223-pounds, Grier has the prototypical size for an NFL quarterback. Last season, he racked up 3,864 passing yards and 37 touchdowns. The WVU passer is one of the more clutch options coming out of college.

Grier met with the Giants last Thursday, according to Aditi Kinkhabwala.

NFL analysts have indicated that Grier’s stock could be rising as he “put on a show” at his Pro Day. Adam Shefter predicted that he could be “a riser” in regard to draft stock.

Head coach Pat Shurmur attended Grier’s Pro Day, evaluating him for the sideline as he did with Ohio State’s Dwayne Haskins and Oklahoma’s Kyler Murray. Having the de-facto offensive coordinator and head coach of the Giants in attendance bodes well for the lesser considered signal caller.

The fact of the matter is, the Giants would likely wait until the second-round to take Grier, as he’s an expected mid-round pick. In a weak draft class for quarterbacks, it could be a solid move considering the defense has-been stripped of talent and is in need of capital allocations.

 

New York Yankees: Giancarlo Stanton Preparing For “Stantonion” 2019 Performance

Maybe Giancarlo Stanton’s high strikeout rate is justifiable when considering his home run efficiency. Isn’t that how he’s gained his fame in the first place? The New York Yankees certainly think so and it’s apparent that they’re more than okay with his mentality towards hitting.

New York Yankees: Giancarlo Stanton is gearing up for a record-breaking campaign

Stanton has been a monster this spring, batting .342 with 13 hits, four homers, seven walks, and 13 strikeouts. Over the weekend, the slugger hit a “stantonion” home run, smashing it over the left field fence and breaking his bat in the process.

Look at this behemoth of a homer – absolutely crushed out over the middle of the plate, hooking it just over the left field pole. His power and strength are unparalleled in the MLB…well, maybe Aaron Judge is close behind, but luckily they play for the same team.

The 2019 season offers a chance for Stanton to improve upon his first season with the Yankees where he batted .266 with 38 homers and 211 strikeouts. The swinging and misses were troublesome last season, as he often left runners in scoring position and failed to come up clutch in moments of significance. Hopefully, he has gained confidence hitting in Yankee Stadium and can take his game to the next level.

Breaking down Giancarlo’s spring stats:

While diving into spring stats should be taken with a grain of salt, it’s still important to see how a player is progressing into the season. In 2018, Stanton struck out ever 2.9 at-bats, one of the highest rates in his entire career. This spring, he’s striking out once every 3.45 at-bats, showing a significant improvement. Now, the sample size is small enough to force caution when making assumptions, but it seems as if he’s seeing the ball more efficiently.

One stat that can indicate a better eye for the ball is walking. Last season he earned a walk every 8.8 at-bats, but this spring he has walked every 5.4 at-bats. Everything involving his numbers has seen a positive trend this spring, which is exciting and could indicate a massive season for the slugger.

Stanton and Judge together could be in for a historic season, meaning we might be in for a treat.

 

New York Giants: What Saquon Barkley Could Accomplish In 2019

New York Giants, Saquon Barkley

New York Giants‘ general manager Dave Gettleman made it a priority to upgrade the offensive line the moment he was hired to lead the historic franchise to the promise land. Last season, he cleaned house on the line and began to piece together a more improved unit, allocating heavy investments including cap-space and draft picks.

Signing and draft capital were needed:

Signing players like Nate Solder and drafting Will Hernandez helped spark an improvement after a tough first-half of the year. They were luckily able to acquire former Ram, Jamon Brown, through waivers, despite letting him walk this free agency period after trading for star guard Kevin Zeitler.

The Giants are expected to allocate a draft selection towards right tackle to replace Chad Wheeler if they choose not to sign a veteran like Mike Remmers. Building a solid line will not only help Eli Manning operate the offensive at a high level, but it will make Saquon Barkley that much better.

The New York Giants have a new generational talent in town:

Last season, Barkey, as a rookie, racked up over 2,000 all-purpose yards and 15 touchdowns to complete a dominant inaugural season that earned him the Rooke of the Year award. Now, this was all behind an offensive line that ranked 23rd in the league, according to NFL.com.

Since then, they’ve established a foundation on the offense with Solder, Hernandez, Jon Halapio, Zeitler, and an expected upgrade at right tackle. The entire left side of the line has chemistry together and progressed well as the 2018 season went on.

Considering the fact that the offensive line improved this offseason, it’s possible Barkley shatters even more records in the campaign ahead. We can expect another 2,000 all-purpose yards season, but also to eclipse his rookie total of 1,307 rushing yards and 721 passing yards.

With Odell Beckham Jr. being traded to the Cleveland Browns, the Giants’ offense is Barkley’s to run, and you better believe they will be focusing on him heavily in 2019 and beyond.


New right guard Kevin Zeitler commented on blocking for Saquon Barkley, one of the NFL’s premier running backs:

“I mean, obviously, the first thought that popped in my head is like, ‘All right, we got Saquon,’” Zeitler said. “I know he’s a heck of a player so that can only make life more fun for me.”

Building chemistry and a rapport with his new teammates will be essential moving forward, and he’s more than prepared to take on the challenge.