Giants shut down starting safety, 2 players on the fence for Week 18

New York Giants cornerback Deonte Banks (25) celebrates after a play during the fourth quarter against the Green Bay Packers at MetLife Stadium
Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Giants are gearing up for a Week 18 contest that could define their 2024 NFL draft position. The Giants have an opportunity to climb into the top three picks, putting them in place to land a top quarterback.

However, suppose the Giants do emerge victorious against the Philadelphia Eagles, who are battling for the top spot in the division. In that case, their draft pick will fall several spots, potentially putting them out of range to land a premium signal caller.

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The Eagles and Giants Will Both be Short-Handed

The Eagles have already ruled out two players ahead of Sunday afternoon: Wide receiver DeVonta Smith and cornerback Darius Slay. For the Giants, they shut down starting strong safety Jason Pinnock for the rest of the season, undergoing surgery to correct turf toe.

Pinnock has situated himself as a primary starter in the Giants’ secondary. He finished the season playing 1,011 snaps, collecting 61 tackles, and allowing a 60% reception rate, including 284 yards allowed, two interceptions, and five pass break-ups. Pinnock, 24, was formally picked up off the waiver wire after the New York Jets released him two years ago. Fortunately, the Giants stumbled upon a gem, and Pinnock should be a starter for the foreseeable future.

Nonetheless, the Giants are listing starting rookie corner Deante Banks as doubtful with a shoulder injury. Banks has been excellent this season despite a few inconsistencies. He’s posted 56 tackles with a 57.6% reception rate, giving up 644 yards, four touchdowns, but collecting two interceptions and six pass breakups. Opposing teams have attacked Banks at times this year, but he’s been solid over the past few games and has shown CB1 upside.

The Giants are also listing rookie center, John Michael-Schmitz as ‘questionable’. JMS has a shin injury, and while he is expected to play, the Giants are expecting more from their second-round pick from 2023.

As a rookie, it is only fair to give him this past season as a developmental campaign, but JMS will have to take a big step forward during his sophomore season when he’s 25 years old. Fortunately, he has plenty of potential, and the Giants are still excited about his development.