As the New York Giants prepare for their first full team practice on Thursday, multiple positions are in dire need of depth and security. Training camp and the pre-season will be the determining factor for starters on both the offensive and defensive side of the ball. But in this article we will focus on three very influential position battles that will ultimately help form the team as a whole once the regular season begins.
The Giants have a glaring hole at the safety position, as both Darian Thompson and Andrew Adams aren’t exactly starting quality. Both have shown signs of life with Adams being the more productive player. Thompson missed his rookie season due to a foot ailment that sent him to the IR list, and his sophomore year didn’t prove to be very encouraging. He missed tackles and blew coverages regularly, forcing the defensive line to compensate for the lack of support in the secondary.
Adams played well, sparingly. He recorded two passes defended and 28 total tackles over four games started. He regularly subbed in throughout games, but wasn’t the primary starter.
This will certainly be a good battle to watch during camp, as the winner will start the season as the free safety alongside Landon Collins.
Both Brett Jones and Jon Halapio had decent seasons in 2017 as reserve lineman. Jones stepped in to fill the shoes of Weston Richburg, who succumbed to a concussion. The third-year lineman proved to be a valiant plug and play option, as he stood his ground and was a shimmer of light on a struggling offensive line.
Halapio on the other hand played more at guard. He struggled at times but showed progress in his development and optimism for 2018. So far, it’s thought that Halapio is actually in the lead to secure the vacant center position, ahead of Jones. Obviously, this position is very influential on the offense and holds a lot of expectation. It’s not an ideal scenario, but both players are capable of holding their own on game-day.
3.) Right Tackle
This is one of the bigger position battles to watch out for in camp. Ereck Flowers is the expected starter at right tackle, especially when considering his previous experience on the Giants’ line. The issue is, he sucked at left tackle, so why would he be good at right tackle?
A former pro said to me, “switching sides is like brushing your teeth with your non-dominant hand, it doesn’t work.” Not encouraging in regard to Flowers making the transition, but it doesn’t seem like the Giants have any other options.
Unless, Chad Wheeler can make a run at the job. Wheeler has shown flashes of power and ability, but with only one season and limited action under his belt, he seems like a long-shot. Personally, I can’t imagine Flowers being above average, so it’s safe to say the starting job is open for the taking.