The New York Giants have put together an offense with a multitude of talented playmakers. Entering his second NFL season, Daniel Jones will be sharing the football with the likes of Saquon Barkley, Sterling Shepard, Evan Engram, Golden Tate, Darius Slayton, and others. On paper, this is a pretty solid stable of playmakers.
This is the same group that the Giants put on the field in 2019. But, with a new offensive scheme under Jason Garrett, will this same group of playmakers improve in 2020?
One area of the Giants’ offense that has been heavily discussed this offseason is the receiving corps. Many have criticized the Giants’ offense, citing a lack of a true number one receiver as a major weakness. Even former Giants Super Bowl champion wide receiver Amani Toomer stated this to be a weakness. With that being the case, what will the wide receivers be able to accomplish in 2020 with Daniel Jones and Jason Garrett?
Will There Be A 1,000-Yard Receiver?
From 2014 to 2018, the Giants had one primary receiver running the show and dominating the competition. Odell Beckham Jr. managed to surpass 1,00 receiving yards in every season he played with the Giants (except for 2017 when he only played in 4 games before suffering a season-ending leg injury).
Odell’s departure in the 2019 offseason came as a huge surprise for most Giants fans. Beckham had been the team’s best and most consistent player over the past five seasons and his absence was felt on Sundays in 2019. The Giants did not have a 1,000-yard receiver in 2019 and the team’s receivers struggled to fill the void that the Odell trade left behind.
Will that change in 2020? Will one of the Giants’ receivers crack 1,000 yards? Based on the career history of the Giants’ receivers, it is not very likely.
Sterling Shepard has never totaled 1,000 receiving yards in his four-year career. His career-high is 872 yards in 2018. Additionally, Shepard spent much of the 2019 season off the field due to injuries. It is unlikely that Sterling Shepard will net his first 1,000-yard season in 2020. Jason Garrett will be running a run-first offense that will use slot receivers like Shepard and Golden Tate as reliable chain movers and underneath route-runners. Shepard likely will not have enough big-play opportunities to have a chance at 1,000 receiving yards.
Golden Tate likely will not reach the 1,000-yard milestone this season for the same reasons as Sterling Shepard, though he seems to have a better chance than Sterling. Tate did manage to total 676 receiving yards in 11 games last season. Golden has had three 1,000-yard receiving seasons in his career, but not since 2017. At nearly 32-years old, it is hard to imagine Golden Tate having a career resurgence and becoming anything more than a reliable number two receiver with the Giants this season.
Of all the Giants’ receiving targets, Darius Slayton has the best chance to total 1,000 receiving yards. Slayton flashed tons of potential in limited playing time in 2019. The rookie racked up 740 yards and 8 touchdowns, which was the most of all rookie receivers. Big Play Slay proved to be a big-time playmaker. If Slayton develops in year two he could have a breakout season and become that number one receiving threat that the Giants currently do not have. An expanded role as Daniel Jones’s favorite receiving target in 2020 gives Darius Slayton the best chance to top 1,000 receiving yards.