Giants waive injured running back, sign DB Elijah Riley

nfl: nfc divisional round-new york giants at philadelphia eagles, gary brightwell

The New York Giants‘ offseason program is in full swing, and they are still fine-tuning their roster as summer approaches. This Thursday, the team announced that they had waived former sixth-round running back Gary Brightwell with an injury designation. Brightwell was selected during the tenure of former coach Joe Judge, who had connections with the Arizona Wildcats.

Over three seasons with the Giants, Brightwell logged only 42 rushing attempts, averaging 4.1 yards per carry and accumulating a total of 173 yards and one touchdown.

Giants Ushering in New Players

Last season, Brightwell struggled with injuries, managing just nine rushing attempts for 19 yards and catching five passes for 47 yards. With the recent drafting of Tyrone Tracy from Purdue and the signing of undrafted free agent Dante Miller, known for his speed, the Giants now have ample depth in their running back room.

To fill the vacancy left by Brightwell, the Giants have signed Elijah Riley, a former undrafted free agent in 2020 who initially signed with the Philadelphia Eagles.

After a year in Philadelphia, Riley moved to the New York Jets and spent the past two seasons with the Pittsburgh Steelers. He has a total of 460 defensive snaps to his name, 386 of which were with the Jets, during which he surrendered 137 yards and two touchdowns and managed one pass breakup in 2021.

NFL: Green Bay Packers at Pittsburgh Steelers
Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Although Riley only participated in 50 defensive snaps last year, yielding 36 yards and making five tackles, he was significantly more involved in special teams, playing 216 snaps. His experience will be valuable as he competes for a spot on the special teams unit, where many players will be vying for roster positions.

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