New York Giants predicted to select Alabama WR Jaylen Waddle in mock draft

New York Giants, Jaylen Waddle

The 2021 NFL Draft is a few short months away. But as this offseason begins to ramp up in intensity, the New York Giants will begin looking for ways to improve their offense. Uprgading the offense, more specifically, upgrading the offensive playmakers, is a major point of emphasis for the Giants this offseason. Co-owner John Mara and general manager Dave Gettleman vowed to improve the offense this offseason.

Giants fans have quickly turned their attention to the 2021 NFL Draft and free agency periods. Both free agency and the draft will feature rich wide receiver classes filled with talent for the Giants to acquire. At the top of the NFL Draft, there are a few intriguing options for the Giants at wide receiver.

Ja’Marr Chase and Devonta Smith are two exciting wide receiver options that might not make it to pick number eleven in April. So many Giants fans and analysts have turned their attention towards the draft’s consensus third-best wide receiver, Jaylen Waddle.

Jaylen Waddle is the less talked about wide receiver out of Alabama in this year’s draft class. Devonta Smith, the 2021 Heisman Trophy winner, has gotten most of the media attention. There is a good chance, though, that Smith is selected inside the top ten picks of the 2021 NFL Draft. Same goes for the electric Ja’Marr Chase out of LSU. This leaves Jaylen Waddle as the likely next-best option for the Giants in round one.

Jaylen Waddle stats and highlights

Jaylen Waddle has been mocked to the New York Giants in countless mock drafts recently. It seems like a perfect situation where elite talent meets extreme need. The assumption is that the Giants will draft the best receiver on the board in April. This is contingent on what happens in free agency, though.

If the Giants are able to sign a big-name wide receiver in free agency, they could go another direction in the draft. But one of the Giants’ biggest current needs is at wide receiver, so Jaylen Waddle at eleven overall makes sense.

Jaylen Waddle has game-changing speed combined with crafty route running and impressive receiving skills. It is entirely possible that Waddle runs a sub-4.3s forty-yard dash at his 2021 Pro Day. Waddle’s speed makes him a killer deep threat and also makes him highly efficient on shallow or deep crossers. Waddle is able to create plenty of separation through solid route running combined with his elite speed.

Waddle averaged 11.2 yards after the catch per reception over the past two years at Alabama, per PFF. He also averaged a shocking 21.1 yards per reception in 2020. Jaylen posted 28 receptions, 591 yards, and 4 touchdowns in only six games this year at Alabama. Waddle dealt with an ankle injury that kept him sidelined for most of the year, but showed great heart and competitive nature by recovering from that injury and returning for the National Championship Game in 2021.

Throughout the course of Jaylen Waddle’s collegiate career, he played alongside extremely talented offensive teammates. Alabama has been producing first-round wide receiver talents for years, along with NFL quarterbacks and superior offensive linemen. Despite playing in this loaded offense, Jaylen still put up impressive numbers, totaling 1999 receiving yards and 17 touchdowns since 2018, averaging 18.9 yards per receptions over the course of his collegiate career.

Jaylen Waddle is the definition of a playmaker. He is a reliable receiver with the ability to create huge game-changing plays. If the Giants draft Waddle, they will have the choice of moving him inside to slot receiver or playing him off the line of scrimmage in the outside “Z” receiver position. Either way, Waddle dominated at both of those positions in college. If Jaylen Waddle is on the board for the Giants with the eleventh overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, it will be hard for them to pass upon his elite speed and talent.

Will the New York Giants receive any compensatory picks this year?

New York Giants, Cleveland Browns

The New York Giants are not expected to be awarded any compensatory draft picks in the 2021 NFL Draft. The Giants hold the 11th overall pick in the 2021 Draft. They will only have six picks overall to fill the many needs on the roster.

In addition to their first-round pick, the G-Men will have the 42nd overall pick in round two, No. 76 overall in round three, No. 107 overall in round four, and two sixth-round selections — No. 172 and No. 177, the latter received in exchange from the Arizona Cardinals in the Markus Golden trade.

The Giants do not have a fifth-round selection due to the trade with the New York Jets for Leonard Williams. Big Blue also does not have a seventh-round selection either due to the trade with the Denver Broncos for Isaac Yaidom.

According to the compensatory draft pick cancellation chart compiled by “Over The Cap,” the Giants are not due any additional selections due to their aggressive shopping spree in free agency last March. They signed cornerback James Bradberry, linebacker Blake Martinez, kicker Graham Gano, outside linebacker Kyler Fackrell, quarterback Colt McCoy, tight end Levine Toilolo, and safety/special teamer Nate Ebner.

Safety/Special Teamer Michael Thomas was signed by Houston, but according to the chart, he is listed as non-eligible for compensation.

New York Jets: The best No. 23 picks in NFL Draft history

After Wild Card weekend, the New York Jets will pick 23rd in April’s draft, in addition to owning the No. 2 overall choice.

Jamal Adams apparently had one final parting gift for the New York Jets.

With Adams and the Seattle Seahawks falling to the Los Angeles Rams during the opening round of the 2020-21 NFL playoffs, the safety’s former comrades in New York will officially hold the 23rd overall pick in April’s NFL Draft. New York gained the pick in the trade that sent Adams out to the Pacific Northwest back in July. The Jets also hold the second overall pick in this spring’s selection proceedings and will also choose in Seattle’s slot in the 2022 draft thanks to the summer transaction.

With the selection solidified, who are some of the great names chosen at 23rd overall? ESM looks back…

1951: LB Bill George, Chicago

George revolutionized defense in football, often credited as the first “middle” linebacker in the history of the game. His antics are also attributed to the creation of the 4-3 defense, which he used to his advantage to the tune of 18 interceptions during a 15-year NFL tenure. He was named to eight Pro Bowls and first-team All-Pro squads each and also guided the Bears to the 1963 NFL championship. George’s No. 61 is retired by the Bears and was also named to the NFL’s all-decade squad for the 1950s.

1959: OL Dick Schafrath, Cleveland

No matter what happened, Schafrath was probably going to leave an impact on Ohio sports. By the time his high school days were done, he was being actively recruited by the Cincinnati Reds baseball club and Woody Hayes’ Ohio State football program. Schafrath opted for the gridiron, developing a no-nonsese work ethic that earned him the nick name of “The Mule”. He went on to make seven Pro Bowl squad appearances and earn four first-team All-Pro nods over the course of his NFL career (1959-71) before entering politics in 1983. Schafrath would go on to serve over 14 years as a Republican State Senator in Ohio’s 19th District.

1973: P Ray Guy, Oakland

Choosing a punter with the 23rd overall pick seems like a ridiculous notion, but Guy lived up to his billing and then some over a 14-year career with the Raiders organization. He partook in 207 consecutive NFL games and landed 210 punts inside the opponents’ 20-yard-line since 1976 (when the NFL first started tracking such a stat). In 2014, Guy became the first exclusive punter (and first exclusive special teamer since Jan Stenerud) to be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Today, the top honor to the best collegiate punter in the nation is known as the Ray Guy Award.

1978: TE Ozzie Newsome, Cleveland

Though Newsome is perhaps better known for his exploits off the field through his endeavors as the Baltimore Ravens’ general manager and the Byron “Whizzer” White Man of the Year Award, he was one of the most dominant tight ends of the 1980s. Newsome remains the Browns’ all-time leader in receiving yardage (7,980) and receptions (662) and appears as the tight end of the Hall of Fame’s all-decade squad. He would go on to make history in 2002, serving as not only the first general manager of the Ravens but the first African-American in league history to hold the title. Baltimore has won two Super Bowl titles with Newsome in the front office, most recently in 2013.

1983: DE Jim Jeffcoat, Dallas

The New Jersey native (Long Branch) had big shoes to fill in replacing former Super Bowl MVP Harvey Martin on America’s Team. He filled them in rather nicely, becoming a star attraction in some of the leanest years in Cowboys history. Once the team started to started to return to prominence upon the arrival of Troy Aikman and Emmitt Smith, Jeffcoat’s dominance rose to a national level, partaking in first two championships of the Dallas dynasty in the 1990s. Jeffcoat retired with 102.5 sacks, one of only 35 defenders to reach triple digits in the category in his NFL career.

1987: T Bruce Armstrong, New England

Armstrong retired just before the Patriots’ dominance began, but he built a strong career as a reliable blocker. Over a 14-year career, Armstrong started all but 12 possible games in a New England uniform, making six Pro Bowls in the process (including one during the Patriots’ run to the Super Bowl in 1996-97). Though he was unable to earn a ring before departing, Armstring’s No. 78 is retired by the Patriots.

1995: CB Ty Law, New England 

Law earned 59 interceptions in his NFL career, none of which were more important than his lone postseason touchdown. His interception of Kurt Warner came during the first-half proceedings of Super Bowl XXXVI, taking it back 47 yards to give the Patriots a lead they would never relinquish against the St. Louis Rams. That score kicked off the New England dynasty in earnest, setting off a streak of six Super Bowl titles over the next decade-plus. Law stuck around for two more of those championships and appears on both the 1990s and 2000s versions of the Patriots’ official all-decade squads. The defender included a brief tour of New York in his Hall of Fame career, earning a career-best 10 interceptions during the 2005 season.

1999: CB Antoine Winfield, Buffalo

Winfield bookended his rookie season by earning an interception of Peyton Manning in his first contest and ended it with a takeaway of Steve McNair during the AFC Wild Card playoffs in Tennessee. After five years with the declining Bills, Winfield made a strong name for himself in Minnesota, earning 22 interceptions and establishing himself as one of the hardest hitters in the league. By the time the 2000s ended, Winfield was one of four players to earn at least 600 tackles, 65 pass breakups, 15 interceptions, and 10 forced fumbles, a brotherhood that also featured Ray Lewis, Ronde Barber, and Keith Bulluck. Winfield would later be named one of the “50 Greatest Vikings” during the team’s 50th anniversary celebrations in 2010. His son, Antoine Jr., is currently in the midst of his rookie season with Tampa Bay.

2001: RB Deuce McAllister, New Orleans

Injury woes perhaps tragically denied us of the true Deuce McAllister experience. Originally called upon to pick up the Saints’ rushing pieces after the Ricky Williams misfire, McAllister topped 1,000 yards in four of his first six seasons, including a career-best 1,641 in 2003. But two torn ACLs over three seasons ended his career prematurely, forcing New Orleans to turn to the services of Reggie Bush. Though he sat out the entire 2009-10 season, the Saints remembered McAllister’s contributions to the team. He was signed shortly before the team’s Divisional playoff matchup en route to the Super Bowl, serving as the honorary captain for their win over Arizona. McAllister did not play but was allowed to retire with a championship ring when New Orleans won Super Bowl XLIV.

Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags 

New York Giants officially eliminated from the playoffs, clinch 11th pick in 2021 NFL Draft

The New York Giants have been officially eliminated from the playoffs. After an exciting win over the division-rival Dallas Cowboys today, the Giants had to wait until tonight to see if their season would continue. All the Giants needed was a Philadelphia win over the Washington Football team.

Unfortunately, the Giants did not get what they needed out of their rivals, the Philadelphia Eagles. The Washington Football Team beat the Eagles on primetime and won the NFC East for the first time since 2015. The Football Team won by a final score of 20-14.

The New York Giants, now eliminated from playoff contention, can focus their attention on the offseason. Had they won, they would have played the Tampa Bay Buccaneers next Saturday. Instead, Washington will host Tampa Bay and the Giants will look ahead to free agency and the draft.

The Giants clinched the 11th overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft today. Their win over Dallas improved their record to 6-10. This is an improvement over last year’s 4-12 record. However, this win did push the Giants down the draft order and they are now selecting behind the Dallas Cowboys.

Regardless, it was a sloppy, interesting, but hopeful season for the New York Giants and rookie head coach Joe Judge. In their first year without Eli Manning, the Giants played meaningful football through December. If not for some heart-breaking losses down the stretch, the Giants could have won their division. Unfortunately, the Giants did not put together enough wins to control their own destiny.

Looking ahead to 2021, fans can anticipate a bloodbath between the Giants and the Eagles. After Eagles’ head coach Doug Pederson’s decision to pull quarterback Jalen Hurts from their Week 17 game in the fourth quarter, suspicion arose amongst the football world. It seemed to many that the Eagles tanked this game and disregarded all competitive integrity in order to gain a higher draft pick. Needless to say, Giants fans and players alike are not happy about this decision by Pederson and the game’s outcome because of this decision. New York will not forget this night and will eagerly anticipate the opportunity to seek revenge in the 2021 NFL season.

New York Giants could make the playoffs or pick as high as third overall in 2021 NFL Draft

New York Giants, Daniel Jones

Despite losing to the Baltimore Ravens yesterday, the New York Giants are still very much alive in the playoff hunt. The lowly NFC East has kept the Giants in the playoff hunt despite their 5-10 record. But the Giants do not have complete control over their playoff destiny heading into Week 17. They will need some help to make the playoffs for the first time since 2016.

Inversely, the Giants have the unique opportunity to be awarded a top-three draft pick in 2021 if they miss the playoffs by only one game.

How the Giants could make the playoffs

The Giants will need some help to get into the playoffs next week. First and foremost, the Giants need to beat the Dallas Cowboys in Week 17. The 6-9 Cowboys are on a three-game winning streak entering the final week of the season. Over these last three games, Dallas is averaging 36 points per game. New York’s defense will need to slow down Andy Dalton and the Dallas offense to keep the playoff hopes alive.

The Giants will play the Cowboys at 1 p.m. on Sunday. Then, they will have to wait until the primetime, Sunday night matchup to see if they are making the playoffs. The Washington Football Team and Philadelphia Eagles had their Week 17 matchup flexed to the primetime slot. The Giants need some help from the Eagles in order to make the playoffs.

If the Giants beat the Cowboys next week, they will improve to a 6-10 record, which would be the same as the Cowboys. However, the Giants have the tie-breaker over Dallas because they have the better divisional record. So, then it would come down to the Giants and the Football Team. The Giants also have the tie-breaker over the Washington Football Team.

If Washington loses in Week 17, their record would fall to 6-10 as well. If the Giants win in Week 17, they will have the same record as the Football Team if Washington is unable to win and get in. It might pain many Giants fans to do this, but this week, they will be rooting hard for the rival Philadelphia Eagles to beat the Washington Football Team and help New York make the playoffs.

How the Giants could get the third overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft

If an NFL team does not make the playoffs, their fans immediately turn their attention to the offseason. More specifically, once a team is eliminated from playoff contention, most fans believe that it would behoove their team to lose as many games as possible. The team with the worst record in the NFL will be awarded the first overall pick in the NFL Draft.

The first two picks of the 2021 NFL Draft have already been clinched. But every single other pick after that is up for grabs. And somehow, the Giants not only have a chance of making the playoffs, but they also have a chance of securing the third overall draft pick in the 2021 NFL Draft.

In order for this to happen, the Giants need a lot of help. Firstly, the Giants need to lose to Dallas. This scenario only exists if the Giants are unfortunately eliminated from playoff contention. But it is an exciting fallback plan.

Secondly, the Giants need Philadelphia to beat Washington. New York needs this to make the playoffs, anyway, so Giants fans are rooting for Philly regardless on Sunday night. On top of that, the Giants are going to need some bottom-barrel NFL teams to pull off some upsets.

The Houston Texans need to beat the Tennessee Titans in order for the Giants to get the third overall pick. The Giants also need the Atlanta Falcons to beat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The Titans are very unlikely to lose to a poor Houston Texans team, but it is a divisional matchup, so you never know what could happen. That goes for the Falcons as well who will be playing the Buccaneers. Luckily, the Bucs have already clinched a playoff spot, so they could be resting their stars. This could give the Falcons, who just went down to the wire with the Kansas City Chiefs, a chance to win in Week 17.

Lastly, the Giants need two more upsets to get the third pick. New York needs the Bengals to upset the Ravens and the Lions to upset the Vikings. While the Lions winning is somewhat plausible, it would still be an upset. The Vikings have a better record and Detroit is coming off of a putrid Week 16 performance. The Bengals beating the Ravens, however, is a huge longshot. Baltimore is rolling and fighting for a playoff spot. It is unlikely they let the Bengals take that playoff opportunity away from them.

So, while it is a longshot, it is a possibility for the Giants to receive the third overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. Most Giants fans will likely be rooting for a playoff birth instead, but it might be reassuring to know that, if the Giants miss the playoffs, they will have the opportunity to draft near the top of the 2021 NFL Draft.

2021 Draft prospects the New York Giants should target

New York Giants, LSU, Ja'Marr Chase

Barring a surge of wins down the stretch, the New York Giants are on track to finish the season with another top-five pick in the 2021 NFL draft. With what would be their fifth top ten selection in the first round since 2015, the Giants are in a great position to draft a special prospect. Here are a few prospects I believe would benefit the Giants greatly in 2021.

1. Justin Fields: QB, Ohio State

If the Giants land a top-three pick, Fields has to be in the conversation. Some have even compared him and Clemson star QB Trevor Lawrence as the “1A and 1B” draft prospects in the upcoming class. So far at Ohio State, he has displayed natural arm talent and elite mobility. With a prep background as a baseball shortstop, I see him as a Kyler Murray level prospect. If the franchise is not sold on Jones and sees this as an opportunity to snag an elite QB prospect, it might be too enticing for the team to pass up on.

2. Penei Sewell: OT, Oregon

Sewell is the prospect I predict as of today is most likely to be taken by the Giants if he is available. An elite blocker in both the passing and rushing game, Sewell is the best available OT prospect in this draft. With a strong upper body and incredible length as a run blocker, pairing him with Andrew Thomas could set the Giants up to have their tackle tandem for the next decade. If the prospects from the 2020 draft like Shane Lemieux and Matt Peart pan out, the team could see a quick upgrade to finally repair the offensive line.

3. Ja’Marr Chase: WR, LSU

Several questions surround the wide receiver position with the Giants. Will they trade Golden Tate? What will they end up doing with Sterling Shepard? Outside of Darius Slayton, almost everything is up in the air. Not to mention the upcoming wide receiver free-agent class is loaded with names like Kenny Golladay, Keenan Allen, and Allen Robinson. But if the Giants do want to continue the development of Daniel Jones, he’s going to need weapons. He is yet to play with a true number one receiver, and Chase could be just that. Chase set the single-season SEC touchdown record as a true freshman in 2019 and loves to attack open space and is great in contested situations. He is the real deal, and if he is available at the Giants’ selection, he should very much be in consideration.

4. Micah Parsons: LB, Penn State

Many Giant fans, myself included, were clamoring for the team to select Isaiah Simmons fourth overall last year. While I was not disappointed with the Thomas selection, the Giants’ pass-rushing unit has still not improved. I have very much liked what I have seen from Patrick Graham’s unit so far, and giving him a piece like Parsons could bolster this unit tremendously. He showcases the range, pass coverage ability, and pressuring ability to play virtually any role. Getting Xavier McKinney back healthy, Bradberry and Love on the outside, and the front seven stuffing the run as well as they do is all a recipe for what could be a successful defense. Pairing Parsons with Martinez could be a nightmare matchup for opposing offenses.

5. Gregory Rousseau: EDGE, Miami

More to the point of bolstering the pass-rushing unit, Rousseau is another prospect that needs to be in consideration for the Giants. Clean extension ability with hand placement and length, Rousseau would be an instant upgrade to the defensive unit. With the absence of Markus Golden, the team’s best pass rusher, this has to be an area where the team looks to improve in the offseason. The rest of the division already has at least one solidified pass rusher, and if the Giants fail to put pressure on opposing quarterbacks, they don’t stand a chance.

New York Giants have best chance of landing number one overall pick, according to ESPN

New York Giants, Daniel Jones

Once again, the New York Giants are the talk of the NFL Draft less than a month into the NFL’s regular season. After an abysmal 0-3 start, Giants fans have lost hope in their team and have begun looking ahead to the offseason. According to ESPN FPI, Giants fans have good reason to look ahead to the draft.

The New York Giants have a 27.8% chance of landing the number one overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, per ESPN FPI. This is just ahead of the New York Jets, who have a 27.7% chance of landing the top pick. Right now, it appears that the race for the first pick will be between the two New York teams.

The Giants and Jets have a much higher chance of picking first overall than any other team. The team with the third-highest chance is the Jaguars, at only 8.2%.

The Trevor Lawrence Sweepstakes

There is one player that will be targeted with the number one pick in the 2021 NFL Draft: Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence. Few “generational” quarterbacks have entered the NFL. The prospects that get the “generational” tag are Peyton Manning, John Elway, Andrew Luck, and now Trevor Lawrence. That is elite company that Lawrence is consistently brought up with.

The team that secures the number one overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft will, far more likely than not, draft Trevor Lawrence. Even the Giants will need to give fair consideration to replacing Daniel Jones in that scenario. Jones has flashed great potential in his first 15 starts, but he has been far from perfect. If the Giants do end up with the first overall pick, it would be an indictment on Daniel Jones. The only way the Giants implode like that is if Jones not only fails to progress but actually regresses between now and the end of the season.

So, in that scenario, Dave Gettleman would be fired. Daniel Jones is Gettleman’s (and Pat Shurmur’s) quarterback and, without Gettleman, there are no ties necessarily keeping Jones with the organization. A new general manager would come in and likely consider Trevor Lawrence too good to pass up.

The same goes for the New York Jets and Sam Darnold. Darnold was an excellent prospect coming out of college who has looked impressive at times but has yet to put it all together. Trevor Lawrence, being an infinitely better quarterback prospect, might be the only sensible selection for the Jets at first overall.

Whether it is the Giants, Jets, Jaguars, or someone else picking first overall, the selection will be Trevor Lawrence. Of course, a team like the Jets or Giants could trade down for a king’s ransom if they believe enough in their young quarterbacks. But Trevor Lawrence’s ceiling is too high to pass up. He is a must-pick prospect for whoever lands the top selection in 2021.

Giants, Jets Already in Thick of Trevor Lawrence Derby

Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence is already widely predicted to be the top pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. He is considered to be a generational talent and will lift the fortunes of any team that that selects him.

In order for that to happen, that team must land the first pick by virtue of finishing with the worst record in the NFL in 2021. The New York Jets and the New York Giants are both on their way to challenge for that pick after both opened the season with 0-2 records.

According to the official NFL standings, the Giants and Jets may be 0-2 but they are two of the best 0-2 teams in the league (how is that possible?) thanks to the NFL’s sophisticated tiebreaker rules. There are 11 teams with 0-2 records at the moment. The league is ranking the Giants 11th overall in the NFC and the Jets 12th in the AFC.

But based on what we’ve seen thus far, that will change as the year goes on. The Jets are a mess who lost their two best defenders (Jamal Adams to a trade and C.J. Mosley opted out) before the season even started and their running back (Le’Veon Bell) and wide receiver (Jamison Crowder) are injured. They got crushed by San Francisco at MetLife Stadium even with the 49ers losing some of their best players to injury during the game.

It’s hard to see the Jets winning more than 3-4 games and they may not even get there. Head coach Adam Gase is on the verge of losing the team – if he hasn’t already – and Sam Darnold, in year three, hasn’t really shown that he’s the answer at quarterback. With the supporting cast they’ve put around him, that probably won’t happen again this year.

The Giants have been more competitive but 0-2 is 0-2. Now, they face the prospect of playing out the year without their best player, running back Saquon Barkley, who went down with a possible torn ACL on Sunday. The face the 49ers this week and then head to L.A. and Dallas to play the Rams and Cowboys after that. They also have Tampa Bay, Arizona, Baltimore and Seattle on their schedule as well as Dallas again. Let’s not forget the two games against the Eagles, a team the Giants have lost 11 of their last 12 games to, including seven straight.

What would happen of one of these two ended up with the top pick next April? Would they take Lawrence? That’s a tough choice, but consider this. A trade could bring franchise-altering draft picks and players in return. Taking Lawrence could change both teams’ fortunes forever.

The Jets’ GM, Joe Douglas, was not in the role when the Jets selected Darnold with the third overall pick  in 2018. He’s not married to him. He could take Lawrence and trade Darnold and no one would blink, especially if Darnold doesn’t show any improvement.

The Giants are run by Dave Gettleman – for the moment. The Giants have won just 12 games in the three years since Gettleman took over as GM. They won’t win many again this year and the Giants’ ownership is becoming impatient. They might have a new GM come 2021 and given the choice between Lawrence and the turnover-riddled Daniel Jones, that GM may simply turn the page on Jones.

New York Giants: Best & Worst Case Scenarios For The 2020 Season

New York Giants, Daniel Jones, Lorenzo Carter

Football is almost here. The 2020 NFL season is set to kick off in just a little over a week from today. The New York Giants are entering the new season with a brand new coaching staff and a revamped roster.

Much has been said about the Giants’ offseason moves. They put a heavy emphasis on the defensive secondary and offensive line, but there were other positions they did not address with as much priority.

Regardless of the team’s roster-building strategies, there are two ways that this season can go: good or bad. But what does good and bad look like for the 2020 New York Giants?

Best-Case Scenarios (GOOD)

Obviously, the best-case scenario for any NFL team is to win the Super Bowl. But, realistically, the Giants are not likely to get that far, coming off of a 4-12 season with a new coaching staff implementing new schemes in the middle of a world pandemic. So there is the best-case scenario where the Giants add their fifth Lombardi Trophy to the locker room, and then there is the realistic best-case scenario.

Realistically, the Giants competing for a playoff spot in December is their best-case scenario. New York has been eliminated in November for years now, never truly competing for a playoff spot throughout the season. That needs to change in 2020.

Giants fans are tired of losing. Giants players who have been on the time for more than one season are tired of losing. Losing has become the new normal for the New York Giants, despite being one of the most historic franchises in the NFL.

In order for the Giants to be a competitive team during the final weeks of the season, a few things need to happen. Firstly, the team needs to end the season with seven or more wins. That has not happened since 2016, four years ago, nearly half a decade ago.

Secondly, the Giants need to see their second-year quarterback develop. Daniel Jones showed a lot of promise and potential in his 2019 rookie campaign. But, he was a rookie, and he made plenty of rookie mistakes. Hopefully, Daniel and Jason Garret iron out those mistakes and mold a more polished quarterback in 2020.

Thirdly, the Giants’ defense simply has to be better. They were really bad defensively in 2019. Just be better. Seeing some improvement in the secondary and out of the pass-rushers will be a big step in the right direction for this young Giants football team.

Worst Case Scenarios (BAD)

The best-case scenarios are not completely realistic for the Giants this year. This is not a team that anyone should expect to see win the Super Bowl. But the worst-case scenarios, on the other hand, are considered by some to be very realistic.

I am a believer in Daniel Jones. I think he will improve this year. But not everyone is a believer in our team’s young quarterback. And, I’m never wrong, but what if I do turn out to be wrong about this one? What if the nonbelievers are right? If Daniel Jones goes through a sophomore slump, the Giants are going to be put in a really awkward position.

If for whatever reason, Daniel Jones actually plays worse this season, there is a good chance the Giants, given the state of the rest of the roster, could end up with the top pick in next year’s draft. Now, no one wants to see Daniel Jones fail (except for Pro Football Focus). We all want to see him succeed with the Giants and be the next face of the franchise. But the Giants are in a tricky position this year.

A hectic offseason impacted by COVID-19, a general manager (who drafted Jones) on the hot seat, and a young roster with plenty of injuries scares already piling up. That is what the Giants are dealing with heading into 2020. If all of this culminates into the perfect storm, the Giants could somewhat realistically see their season go straight down the toilet. In this worst-case scenario, New York could find itself with the first overall pick in 2021.

The first overall pick in 2021 will be Trevor Lawrence, no matter who is picking, as long as he declares. If the Giants end up with that pick, that likely means Daniel Jones played really poorly in 2020 and Trevor Lawrence will probably be too good to pass up next offseason. Lawrence is the next generational quarterback prospect, according to most analysts. Those are so rare- Joh Elway, Peyton Manning, and Andrew Luck are the only collegiate quarterback prospects that consistently receive the “generational” tag. In this worst-case scenario for the Giants, there is no choice but to move on from our beloved Danny Dimes.

Good thing this is just a scenario. This will not happen, I am certain of it (though there are some people pretty convinced that this will happen). The Giants are an improved team with an improved coaching staff this season. I expect to see them have a season closer to the best-case scenario than to the worst-case scenario.