Giants may have gem in late-round rookie safety

New York Giants safety Gervarrius Owens (31) somehow got a mouth guard stuck into one of the ventilation holes in his helmet during their game against the Detroit Lions in the second quarter at Ford Field
Lon Horwedel-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Giants enjoyed standout performances from a slew of defensive backs in the team’s preseason opener on Friday night. While Jason Pinnock and Dane Belton steal the spotlight for their performances, another late-round rookie safety also quietly had an impressive performance.

Seventh-round rookie Gervarrius Owens turned heads on Friday night, making the most of his NFL debut. Owens could make an impact in his rookie season as a valuable depth piece in the Giants’ defensive backfield.

Who is Giants rookie Gervarrius Owens?

Big Blue drafted Owens with their final pick in this year’s draft, banking on the rookie safety’s leadership and experience. As a four-year starter at Houston, Owens totaled 208 tackles, 7.5 tackles for loss, four interceptions, and 15 passes defended in 43 career collegiate games.

Owens is a 6-foot, 200-pound defensive back that typically aligns in a traditional free safety role. With that position filled by Xavier McKinney, barring anything unforeseen, Owens is unlikely to see big minutes in the regular season. However, the rookie is still showing out this summer, establishing himself as a valuable depth piece in Wink Martindale’s defense.

Gervarrius Owens stands out in preseason debut

In his first taste of NFL action, Owens nearly walked away with an interception. Nearing the end of the third quarter, Owens jumped a pass as a deep safety, almost picking it off, but ultimately causing a crucial pass breakup.

Owens finished the game totaling two tackles and the aforementioned pass breakup. While he may not have stuffed the stat sheet, Owens exhibited his ability to break on a pass from the deep portion of the field. After an impressive summer of practices, Owens is continuing to stand out, proving he could be a solid contributor on the defensive end.