New York Giants: Saquon Barkley Breaks Into Top 100 On Forbes List

New York Giants, Saquon Barkley

Saquon Barkley is undoubtedly the best offensive player on the New York Giants this year, and has been a good representative of the team in a number of ways since being drafted in 2018. Now, it looks like Barkley will be a representative of the Giants in yet another way: the sole member of the team to make the Forbes list of 100 highest paid athletes.

Barkley managed to make the list at #93, and while that may sound low, it’s somewhat impressive considering the list takes into account players from all of the American sports leagues as well as international athletes, including those in higher paying sports which have no salary cap.

Here’s what Forbes included about Barkley in their writeup:

  • The New York Giants selected Barkley second overall in the 2018 NFL Draft and then signed him to a fully guaranteed four-year, $31.2 million contract.
  • Barkley led the league in all-purpose yards – he’s just the third rookie to ever eclipse 2,000 yards – and earned Rookie of the Year honors.
  • Stardom in the New York market has made Barkley a marketing darling, and he’s already nailed down deals with major brands like Pepsi, Toyota and Visa.
  • Heading into 2019, only five other running backs have higher average salaries than Barkley.

With the departure of Odell Beckham Jr. to the Cleveland Browns, Barkley managed to find himself as the only member of the New York Giants to make the list, which was headlined by European soccer stars Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, and Neymar, as well as boxer Canelo Alvarez.

So far, it looks like Barkley’s contract has been money well spent for the Giants… The Dave Gettleman era has had some questionable decisions so far, but taking Barkley in the draft wasn’t one of them – and Barkley’s performances are only expected to improve as his usage potentially rises this season, after his first year gave him much needed experience.

New York Yankees: Judge And Stanton Ready To Return In A Few Days

New York Yankees, Aaron Judge

The New York Yankees announced earlier this week that outfielders Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton will be beginning rehab in hopes to return to the lineup next week.

Stanton began his rehab on Tuesday with the Tampa Tarpons, and went 2-for-4 with an oppo blast. He also had two home runs in his rehab game on Wednesday. If all goes well, he should meet AAA Scranton in Durham with Aaron Judge before returning to the Yankees.

Judge has only been working out in Florida, and he isn’t planning on playing any A-ball games.

Judge was batting .288 before his injury in 20 games, while Stanton played just three games before he hit the IL. Once those two come back, you can almost say that the Yankees are relatively healthy.

Who goes?

In all likeliness, Clint Frazier goes to AAA with a focus on defense. That puts the final spot between Kendrys Morales and Cameron Maybin.

I think that they should get rid of Morales, and roll with a five man infield.

Keeping Maybin gives the team an extra speedy outfielder that can produce. In 95 at-bats, he has a .274 average with five stolen bases and has given the team solid defense.

With the Yankees stars returning, it forces the team to make tough decisions, but it will just make the team better in the present and the long-run.

 

New York Giants undrafted rookie CJ Conrad proving to be a steal

New York Giants, CJ Conrad

It’s very possible New York Giants general manager Dave Gettleman has struck gold again in the NFL Draft. Last year, he landed Saquon Barkley, Will Hernandez, Lorenzo Carter, and BJ Hill, all impact players going into their second season with high expectations.

He also snagged undrafted rookies Tae Davis and Grant Haley, two players that will earn starting playing time in 2019. This year, he secured a handful of top talents – DeAndre Baker, Daniel Jones, Dexter Lawrence, but undrafted tight end CJ Conrad might be the biggest surprise.

Coming out of Kentucky with a discovered heart issue at the NFL Combine, Conrad’s stock plummeted before the draft. He fell out of the draft entirely but was picked up by Big Blue after his ailment was proved to be insignificant.

So far, he’s been nothing short of fantastic, hauling in every pass thrown his way. For the first time this spring, two rookies were gifted the chance to play with the first stringers during OTAs. Conrad and wide receiver Darius Slayton were the lucky winners.

Coming to the team as a long-shot to make the active roster, Conrad has shown he’s more than capable of competing at the NFL level. Prior to the draft, some analysts believed he was a top seven tight end prospect that would go in the first five rounds – him falling out of the draft benefited the Giants greatly as his skill-set can be diverse with a bit of development.

At 6-4, 248-pounds, Conrad is not only a talented pass-catcher, but he can be a solid blocker on the line of scrimmage as well. The Giants have struggled to find themselves a do-it-all tight end that can operate in every facet of the offense. They’ve been forced to utilize multiple players at the position that have different skills – Evan Engram, Rhett Ellison, and Scott Simonson.

While Conrad has a while to go before he can claim a starting role, he’s certainly on the right path.

 

 

The New York Knicks will never learn

New York Knicks

Despite a right Achilles injury, the New York Knicks will continue to pursue Kevin Durant.  SNYs Ian Begley reported this morning that some within the Knicks organization do agree.

This is replaying a few scenarios that the Knicks have done in the past.  Trying to sign players, to big money, after an injury.  The Knicks signed Amar’e Stoudemire who had knee issues throughout his career and damage to his retina.  Antonio McDyess missed two straight seasons with knee issues as well.

A Achilles injury is a little different from knee issues, but they both require long rehab and can be nagging injuries for the rest of the players career.

The Knicks taking a chance on Durant is risky.  Are they getting the best player in the world?  Yes.  Can he come back to 100% health?  In this day and age with new medical rehab and technology?  Yes.

The only concern is Durant sitting out an entire season doing rehab.  What if Durant does not return to the best player in the NBA, like he was before the injury.  The Knicks would have wasted a max contract on an injured player, like they have done in the past.

However, if the injury report comes back and it is not as bad as some are making it out to be, then have at it.  For the Knicks, we have nothing to lose, except money.  I trust Scott Perry and his decision making.

If Durant does sign with the Knicks, rehabs a full year and returns to himself, then it will all be worth missing one season.  But right now, we do not know.  It would be the biggest gamble Perry takes for the Knicks.

The decision of signing an injured Durant to a max contract can make or break Perry with the Knicks.

New York Yankees setting sights on Nationals star Max Scherzer?

Could the New York Yankees pursue Max Scherzer in a trade?

The New York Yankees have a pitching problem, and it’s not just their bullpen that has struggled as of late, it’s the starters as well. Masahiro Tanaka has lost touch of his renowned splitter, James Paxton has been playing through a knee injury, CC Sabathia has inflammation in his knee, and Domingo German was placed on the 10-day injured list.

Again, the Yankees can’t catch a break with the injury bug, and it may force their hand as we approach the trade deadline. Losing out on former Cy Young award winner Dallas Keuchel certainly hurt, but rumors have stated the Bombers might be looking into a potential trade for Nationals star pitcher, Max Scherzer.

It’s possible the New York Yankees pursue Scherzer:

Considering the fact that Nationals are sub-.500, it makes sense that they would be open to trading the pitcher. The Yanks have one of the best youth systems in baseball, and they have plenty of resources to push a deal through.

The 12-year veteran is 4-5 on the season but is pitching 2.83 with little run support. Last year, he earned an astounding 18 total wins with a 2.53 ERA. There’s no question he’s a premium talent player, my concern is his price tag.

The Nationals might ask too much from the Yanks for their ace, but it’s coming to a point where the Yankees are losing their leverage as the starting rotation is running thin. It will take several months before the regular starters are back in their normal slots, but it seems as if Brian Cashman believes they can weather the storm.

Theoretically, the Yankees just need to make the playoffs, and they’re seemingly on track at the moment. Not paying top-dollar for a quality pitcher can be justified if they continue to win a majority of games. The problem is – even run support can’t supplement bad pitching at times.

 

Will New York Knicks go all-in on Anthony Davis after Kevin Durant injury?

Should the New York Knicks prioritize Anthony Davis after Kevin Durant injury?

Once again, the hearts and minds of New York Knicks fans have been shattered. The vibration that was sent through Warriors star Kevin Durant’s calf spelled trouble for the free agency period, despite teams being unphased by the assumed significance of the injury.

Many general managers have not shied away from stating they will still offer Durant a max-contract even after an expected torn Achilles tendon. However, the Knicks, who will have room for two max-deals, might be more inclined to shift their efforts towards Anthony Davis, who named them as one of his preferred destinations.

Davis, who’s coming off a stellar year averaging 25.9 points-per-game, would cost a lot more than a max-contract if the Knicks are looking to bite. They would have to give up the 3rd overall pick in the 2019 NBA Draft, in addition to multiple young talents looking to take the next step on the starting team.

The Pelicans star is ‘that’ good, though, which makes a deal possible. Now, I wouldn’t rule out the Knicks staying put with their focus on Durant, who will lose a bit of leverage after the injury.

An Achilles tear typically requires between 4-6 months of recovery, and even then the muscle can never return to full strength. That reality poses a risk in of itself, but it’s one the starving franchise might need to take, especially if they lose out on Kyrie Irving and other top free agents.

Durant was rumored to be on his way to New York after purchasing a home and stating his desire. The reality is that the injury will play a significant part, but giving up the house for Davis is still the lesser of the two options, considering the boat-load of money the Knicks have to spend anyway.

The question we have to ask ourselves is – did the New York Knicks dodge a bullet?

Durant coming to New York would have been phenomenal, but at 30-years old and now facing a major injury, his potential is lessened exponentially. Maybe, the Knicks should stick with their youth talent and build for the long haul and not the short term.

Continue to develop the talent on the roster and add pieces every year to assist in their growth, instead of overpaying in an attempt to bring expedited success.

New York Giants: Eli Manning’s final season will likely be 2019

New York Giants, Eli Manning, Daniel Jones

The reality of the 2019 season is becoming very real for New York Giants veteran quarterback, Eli Manning. As he ramps up his training regime and practices more strenuously to retain the starting job, the heat of competition is slowly irking up his spine, in the shape of rookie passer Daniel Jones and father time.

The Giants drafted him 6th overall but have elected to sit him behind Manning for a season to assist in his development and growth.

New York Giants — Gettleman serious about utilizing Green Bay model?

Despite general manager Dave Gettleman stating that Jones could sit behind Manning for the next two/three years, it’s not practical or realistic to perceive that as the truth. Jones has progressed well this offseason, refining his skills and adapting to the NFL skill-level.

The fact of the matter is, Jones might be just as capable as Eli in 2020, and the Giants can’t hold him back from gaining valuable experience in favor of a passer well-beyond his prime, even if he does have a stellar offensive line and a plethora of weapons at his disposal.

Head coach Pat Shurmur left the quarterback position open despite Manning being the assumed starter.

“I think we’re going to play the very best player,” he said when asked if there was a quarterback competition between Manning and rookie Daniel Jones. “I know we’re dancing around the words there. Eli is getting ready to have a great year, and Daniel is getting ready to play. We’ll see what happens with it.”

Jones might be ready to take on the task of becoming the starter, but it isn’t necessary just yet with the Giants still rebuilding and lacking quality at several positions.

A realistic fan would say the 2019 season is a developmental one and the genuine start to the future is in 2020 when Jones should take over. However, plugging him in specific scenarios and allowing him to gain experience isn’t out of the question.

 

New York Knicks should now stand pat in Free Agency

The New York Knicks may have just lost out on the biggest free agent prize.  Kevin Durant going down with a right Achilles injury has changed everything.

The Knicks will have some bigger decisions to make when free agency opens July 1st.  The team could still sign Durant, depending on what he does and how his injury goes.  However, it may not be the smartest move.

Then, add on all the rumors circulating about Kyrie Irving wanting to sign with Brooklyn over New York, the Knicks may want to stand pat in free agency.

Just because the Knicks have money does not need they need to spend it, especially on second tier free agents.  No need to throw crazy money at Khris Middleton or Tobias Harris.

The Knicks might want to stick it out with the young guys and let them grow.  Dennis Smith Jr., Mitchell Robinson, Kevin Knox and Allonzo Trier are the young guns.  Hoepefully, RJ Barrett is the other young guy who will be added to that group.

It will be another year of rebuilding, but it is taking the Golden State Warriors path and building through the draft.  Bravo Scott Perry.  The Knicks could also take on some bad expiring contracts and get draft picks for them.

The Knicks should not need to feel more pressure to sign a player that will ask for max money.  They need to have the correct players in place for the future.

It would not be the end of the world if the Knicks do not sign anyone this summer.  Fans should feel content with playing all their young guys and continuing to build through the draft.  Knicks fans were calling for a youth movement and they can certainly get that now.

New York Giants News, 6/12 – Could Eli Manning be replaced?

New York Giants, Eli Manning

Good Morning, New York Giants Fans!

Head coach Pat Shurmur reaffirmed that Eli Manning is the starter for the Giants to start the 2019 season, however, he did state that rookie quarterback Daniel Jones needs to be prepared to play if needed.

Jones, the 6th overall pick, has progressed well this offseason, showing he can operate an offense and play with calmness. He’s far from playing in a live game, but he is working on his preparation in case the opportunity arises. He will certainly play during the pre-season.

My primary question is – in what scenarios would Jones realistically play over Eli?

There are really only two situations that would see Jones’ name called. If Eli either gets injured or is playing very poorly. The inadequate play is more likely given Manning’s health record.

It’s a scenario that isn’t ideal, as Jones will benefit from a year behind Manning with no interruptions, but a bit of experience certainly wouldn’t hurt. I anticipate the Giants plugging him in during garbage time when appropriate throughout the season, but if they can avoid any other reason it would help him maintain his confidence and work off his limited tape.

Nonetheless–

Your Giants top news of the day!

Ryan Dunleavy (NJ.com) – Why Giants got NFL Draft ‘steal’ in Julian Love: 1 ex-Notre Dame defensive star scouts another

Dan Salomone (Giants.com) – Who stood out at Giants OTA practice? (6/11)

Ed Valentine (Big Blue View) – Giants’ Shurmur walking line between praising Daniel Jones, creating QB controversy

Mike Moraitis (Giants Wire) – Giants’ Darius Slayton running with first-team offense during OTAs

Alexander Wilson (Empire Sports Media) – New York Giants: Corey Coleman finally ready to take his game to the next level

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