The New York Giants are already seeing great returns on their 2022 rookie draft class. The rookies have played a huge part in the success of the Giants’ season. In particular, the Giants’ pair of fourth-round picks from this year’s draft has been stellar. Daniel Bellinger and Dane Belton have made an instant impact for the Giants, providing the 6-2 team with incredible value.
New York Giants getting incredible value from their 4th-round picks
With the 112th pick in the 2022 NFL Draft, the New York Giants selected tight end, Daniel Bellinger. The rookie is expected to be sidelined for an extended amount of time after suffering an eye injury in Week 7, but until that point, Bellinger was having a stellar season.
Through seven games, Bellinger was targeted 18 times and hauled in 16 receptions (88.9%). He totaled 152 receiving yards, two receiving touchdowns, 10 first-downs, and also tacked on a rushing touchdown. Daniel Bellinger was Daniel Jones’s most reliable pass-catching option to start the season. Bellinger’s impact was not only felt in the receiving game but in the running game, too.
Daniel Bellinger made his presence known as a run-blocker. In college, Bellinger was touted as an excellent blocker, but he has since developed those skills and applied them to the NFL. The Giants have called upon Bellinger to execute complex run-blocking schemes and be utilized heavily to open up holes for Saquon Barkley.
Daniel Bellinger underwent successful surgery to correct fractures around his eye last weekend (ESPN). The impactful rookie is aiming to return in 2-6 weeks, though, sources say 4-6 weeks is a more reasonable timeline, per Jeremy Fowler. Regardless, the New York Giants will be eager to get their rookie back in the lineup as Daniel Bellinger looks to build on his spectacular rookie season.
The Giants’ second fourth-round pick, Dane Belton, has also had a stellar rookie season. Belton has been thrust into the defensive lineup after returning from a collarbone injury suffered over the summer. The Iowa product has since entered the lineup and excelled in coverage for the Giants.
Through seven games, Belton has seen 140 coverage snaps. He has been targeted only 12 times, allowing just 6 receptions for 88 yards and 0 touchdowns (NFL Rookie Watch). A coverage man like Belton is exactly what the Giants were missing in their secondary. The rookie has been an excellent complementary player alongside the likes of Xavier McKinney and Julian Love.
McKinney and Love have the ability to get in the box and impact the running game, but the Giants can now utilize their skill sets without sacrificing their coverage thanks to Dane Belton. This ability to excel in coverage has opened things up for defensive coordinator Wink Martindale, demonstrating the incredible value that Dane Belton is providing to the New York Giants.