Immature and juvenile would be two descriptive words to break down the New York Giants in 2017. The organization fell apart at the seams and begun a whirlwind of degradation and humiliation. Since cornerback Eli Apple anonymously ripped the coaching staff and several players on the team, star safety Landon Collins has publicly addressed the situation, not always in a good light.
Collins is arguably the Giants’ best defensive player, making him the de-facto leader. His voice stands taller than the rest and echos through the locker room and media. After calling Apple a cancer in 2017, the media took hold of his words and begun to question his ability to lead in a positive light.
Giants legend offers advice to Collins:
Former defensive end for the Giants, Justin Tuck, offered support to the star safety, stating:
Being a leader is tough: You have to make fast decisions and be an outspoken person and you have to gain the respect of others so they will listen to you,” Collins told Ryan Dunleavy of nj.com. “It’s hard, but it’s a role I’ll always take heavy on my heart.”
He’s one of the guys you want to groom to be that guy because he is one of the best players. As time has evolved, he did it kind of how I did it: Slowly putting himself in those situations. I’ve told him he needs to be that guy.”
Collins will look to change the course of the Giants in 2018, as they finished last season with the 26th ranked run-stop defense. After breaking his arm, Collins has returned to full activity- a second required surgery set him back several weeks in his physical therapy.
Look for Collins to play a major role on a James Bettcher defense that heavily relies on blitzing and shooting the gap. As a strong safety, he will play closer to the line of scrimmage and be a primary factor in stopping the run.