New York Giants: Why Evan Engram can finally break out in 2019

Alexander Wilson
New York Giants, Evan Engram
Sep 9, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants tight end Evan Engram (88) gains yards after catch during the second half against the Jacksonville Jaguars at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

Every year New York Giants tight end Evan Engram is expected to break out but is restrained by injury. The 2019 season represents his best chance at finally reaching his potential, and it’s not because of talent, but rather due to the departure of Odell Beckham Jr.

The 23rd overall pick in the 2019 NFL Draft played in just 58.8% of offensive snaps over the past two years, which has limited his production and potential significantly.

One of the major knocks on the receiving tight end has been his catch-rate — he saw a major improvement from 2017-18. In his rookie campaign, Evan posted a 55.7% catch-rate, dropping 11 passes, while last year he caught 70.3% of passes thrown his way. That’s an impressive jump and a factor that will help him excel in the season ahead.

When Beckham was out due to injury for the final four games of the 2018 season, Engram saw a massive spike in production. Averaging just 36.7 yards per game prior to Beckham’s injury, he saw a jump to 80 yards per game, more than doubling his totals.

This should provide optimism and justification for Engram to finally break out in a big way and establish himself as a top receiving tight end in the NFL.

What’s there to like about New York Giant’s Evan Engram?

Despite his obvious speed and ability with the ball in his hands, Engram brings unpredictability to the offense. Head coach Pat Shurmur can line him up in the slot, off the line of scrimmage, and even as a full-back. There are so many ways to utilize a player that is multi-faceted and can feature in the run and pass game.

While his blocking isn’t the most exciting part about him, he’s capable, especially with Saquon Barkley in the backfield. The Giants did, however, re-sign Scott Simonson to a one-year deal, a player that looked sharp in both the run and pass game. They also signed undrafted free agent CJ Conrad who has looked stellar in minicamp so far.

Providing competition at the position should help the Giants extract the most value from the players battling to keep their starting spot. I’m quietly rooting for Conrad who has ample size and speed to be a solid blocker but also a passing option for quarterback Eli Manning.