There’s not many players on the roster of the New York Giants who have had as many troubles with injuries and staying healthy as Evan Engram has. The tight end was praised around the league for his rookie performance but hasn’t quite lived up to that in subsequent seasons, and his troubles staying on the field have caused a lot of fans to question if the Giants are making the right decision by keeping him on the roster.
This season looks like a make or break one for Engram. By now, fans are expecting an improvement from last season or for the Giants to move on from Engram entirely. And despite the past struggles, some of the experts analyzing the league are still high on Engram’s chances this year.
Evan Engram: A top tight end in the league?
Pro Football Focus had good things to say about the player.
Only Kelce (77), Kittle (65), Gronkowski (65), Ertz (64) and Waller (61) have averaged more receiving yards per game than Engram (52) among all TEs since 2017. His average of 7.7 targets per game with Daniel Jones under center in 2019 and was just below Golden Tate (8.4) and Sterling Shepard (8.3) Note that backup TE Kaden Smith assumed a similarly productive role when Engram missed time last season.
Engram will need to stay on the field to take advantage of the potential he’s shown so far, however. Even a great player only has a limited impact overall when they spend much of the season on the sideline. And Engram spent a lot of time on the sideline during 2018 and 2019.
In 2018, Engram played in 11 games. In 2019, his injury problems only got worse rather than better. Engram played in 8 games that year, and only 6 of them were starts. He had his lowest total yards out of his three years in the league, too.
What does it mean? That Engram is still largely a mixed bag for the Giants.
When he’s healthy, he’s one of the most promising players at the position. But that’s not a given, and for the past couple of years, Engram hasn’t been healthy enough to live up to that. This season will be important for Engram as a chance to prove that these injury filled seasons were flukes and not the norm.
And if Engram can’t prove that, the Giants may just decide his production when healthy isn’t worth dealing with his absences due to injury.