The New York Giants‘ offense has struggled throughout the 2020 NFL season. Even in the team’s first victory of the year on Sunday, the offense was not the driving force towards victory. New York is now also dealing with numerous injuries in their skill positions.
Sterling Shepard has missed the last four games with turf toe. Darius Slayton has been banged up, but playing through injuries at a high level. CJ Board suffered a scary head/neck injury on Sunday. The Giants are running out of options in their receiving corpse.
In addition to having less wide receivers available to play, New York has also made the decision to put Golden Tate on the field less. His role in the offense has diminished week by week since Week Three. Tate’s absence on the field is peculiar when considering his durability and high salary. But Joe Judge has stayed true to his word: no matter where you are drafted or how much you are paid, you have to earn your spot. Golden Tate has not earned his spot thus far in 2020.
Golden Tate’s Diminishing Role
In Week Three, Golden Tate was featured prominently in the Giants offense, playing 92% of the team’s offensive snaps. His snap percentage decreased to 75% the following week. His role diminished even further the following week, as he played only 59% of the Giants’ offensive snaps in Week Five.
In the Giants’ Week Six win, Tate played 62% of the team’s offensive snaps. But in the first half, Tate was barely seen on the field. It was not until CJ Board went down with an injury that Tate started seeing significant time on the field.
Golden Tate has seen his role in the Giants’ offense decrease significantly. He has only been targeted 24 times in six games. He also had only one target and one reception in Week Six against the Washington Football Team.
Tate’s Lackluster Performance and Clouded Future
Golden Tate is one of the highest-paid players on the Giants’ offense. New York handed Tate a four-year $37.5 million contract to supplement the loss of Odell Beckham Jr. in the 2019 offseason. Tate’s cap hit is over $10 million this year, but the veteran wide receiver is not living up to that price tag.
The New York Giants are unlikely to keep Tate around long-term. He is on pace to total only 57 receptions and 468 yards this season. It does not make sense to pay a wide receiver over $10 million for an average of 31.2 yards per game. Luckily for New York, there is a potential out in Tate’s contract this upcoming offseason. The Giants can cut Golden Tate in the 2021 offseason to free up over $6 million in cap space. Considering the way he has played this year, it seems likely that the Giants will go this route. That is if Golden Tate is not traded at this year’s deadline…