New York Giants: What James Bradberry needs to do to help the secondary succeed

New York Giants, James Bradberry

The New York Giants’ secondary has been the team’s weakness spot for years. Finally, the Giants’ front office made it a priority this offseason to fix it. With the addition of James Bradberry, the Giants’ secondary is looking a lot better. For example, Bradberry can play multiple positions. He can play slot corner, outside corner, and nickel corner. Overall, the signing of Bradberry was a steal, and also was an old Dave Gettleman draft pick.

Bradberry is capable of covering a team’s number one receiver

Over the past few seasons, the Giants have relied on Janoris Jenkins to cover a team’s number one receiver. Now, they have a better option with Bradberry because he is capable of guarding a receiver wherever they line up. Last year, Bradberry covered some of the best receivers in football.

Also, James Bradberry only allowed one touchdown against the best receivers in football. Hopefully, he can do that again this year for the Giants. Last season, Bradberry was target 97 times and allowed 58 completions. His completion percentage allowed was 59.8. He allowed 644 yards which were an improvement from 2018 where he allowed 802 total yards.

Image

2019 stats 

In 2019, Bradberry played in 15 games and tallied three interceptions. Also, Bradberry has recorded one sack for the past three seasons. Patrick Graham could use Bradberry on a corner blitz and in the box. Alongside those numbers, Bradberry recorded 65 combined tackles and 51 solo tackles. Overall, he only had one tackle for a loss and one quarterback hit last year. If he could increase these two stat lines he’d be playing elite football.

To add on, Bradberry also played 1020 snaps last season which was 92% of defensive plays. The Giants will need him to stay healthy an average around 90% of snaps throughout the season.

A quote from Brabderry about challenging himself

“I see myself as a versatile corner. I can play zone, I can play man. I was down for whatever. Of course, playing a lot of man is a challenge for any cornerback and I am always willing to accept a challenge.”

 

New York Giants: Sterling Shepard will have a breakout season

New York Giants, Sterling Shepard

The New York Giants’ new and improved team could open some eyes in 2020. Especially, Sterling Shepard who is coming off a rough 2019 season. To rephrase it, I’m saying rough season because of the number concussion he dealt with.

For example, Shepard missed six games due to concussions, this was tough to watch as a fan. I love Sterling Shepard, not seeing him on the field hurt me, he is a great team leader.

What we can expect from Shepard

Year in and year out, Shepard is that guy who lights a fire in his teammates. He is a team leader and a motivator, there is no better hype man than Sterling Shepard. Without a doubt, Shepard is a guy who needs to stay healthy and be on the field all game. First off, expect Shepard to be a force in the slot and out wide. Not to forget, Shepard has been used before on Jetsweeps, and wheel routes. Overall, Jason Garrett will have a lot of options to choose from, Shepard will be a huge part of the offensive system in 2020.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZWQLwgIdoK8

2020 stat line projection

In 2020, Sterling Shepard will be a man on a mission. Hopefully, he is healthy for all 16 games. I’m projecting Shepard to be targeted over 100 times with 70 receptions, and have over 700 receiving yards!  Although Shepard only had three touchdowns in 2019, I’m expecting him to have eight receiving touchdowns this year. Overall, I think Shepard will compete with Slayton for receiving yards and touchdown catches.

I’m expecting a big year out of Sterling Shepard especially with the new offensive system installed. I think Jason Garrett will improve Shepards’ game by a landslide. However, the Giants need Shepard to stay healthy in 2020, having two concussions last year scared a lot of Giants’ fans. Especially me, at the end of the day, Sterling Shepard is a family man and has to consider that factor.

New York Giants’ Xavier McKinney says he’s ‘comfortable anywhere’

New York Giants, Xavier McKinney

The New York Giants got a steal in the second round with one of the best safeties, Xavier McKinney. The Giants’ defense needed a playmaker at safety to help Peppers; they certainly found their guy. What separates Mckinney from others? His ability to be comfortable anywhere on the defense. This is a great sign for the Giants, especially with how this offseason is going. The global pandemic isn’t making it easy for any rookie to meet up with their coaches or members of the defense.

The New York Giants are getting a playmaker with their 2nd round pick

“Well, it’s definitely been different,” the rookie second-round pick told the Giants Huddle podcast. “The big word that I keep hearing is unique. I think our situation has been very unique just because this is the first time something like this has happened. It definitely has been a different experience, but at the same time, I never went through the [normal] experiences before.

This offseason has been everything but normal, doesn’t matter to Xavier Mckinney who has never gone through a normal experience.

“So for me, this is just something that I have to go through as far as my process and all the other rookies. But I think it’s been good overall. It’s a lot of Zoom calls, I’ll tell you that. It’s a lot of calls over the phone, which you can kind of get tired of, at times. But it’s definitely been fun. It’s a different experience and I’ve loved every bit of it.”

Giants’ fans should be thrilled with the way McKinney has approached the offseason. Eventually, the time will come where Mckinney can show the fans what he can do. I think Xavier Mckinney is at his best when he has room to roam. I say this because I want the Giants to give Mckinney the freedom he wants.

In his final season at Alabama, Mckinney played 323 snaps in the box, 227 in the slot, and 271 deep. As the stats show, McKinney was a force in the box, he can help out the Giants’ pass rush tremendously.  Last year, McKinney led Alabamas’ defense with 95 tackles, and also had three sacks as a safety! Hopefully, Joe Judge and Patrick Graham scheme play Mckinney and move him all around the field. Having a guy like Mckinney is huge for the Giants’ defense, he is a complete upgrade over Landon Collins.

The New York Giants will be able to use Xavier McKinney anywhere on defense. Recently, Mckinney has been in touch with his defensive teamates, building good relationships and chemistry. I love seeing this, especially with the circumstances at hand. Most of these players can’t meet up yet, but as soon as they do, they will already of made a connection.

“I’m just ready to go and build that relationship with those guys,” McKinney said. “And actually ready to get on the field and be able to play with all these guys that I’ve seen in the past – like watched on TV. I’m ready to get things going at this point.”

A quote from Nick Saban

“Xavier has a lot of diversity as a player,” Saban said. “He can play man-to-man, he’s got pretty good ball judgment, he’s a good tackler, he’s got a lot of toughness, he’s a very instinctive and effective blitzer. He’s got some burst and acceleration to come off the edge or blitz up the middle and he’s got enough power to take on a blocker if he needs to.

“So he can do just about all the critical factors in terms of what we look for in a safety here. As he got experience, he was smart enough to be able to play multiple positions.”

 

 

New York Giants: Why Dion Lewis is an upgrade over Wayne Gallman

New York Giants, Dion Lewis

The New York Giants’ front office made big moves this offseason to improve both the offense and defense. During free agency, the Giants’ signed veteran running back, Dion Lewis to a one year deal which is worth 1.5 million. The Giants needed a running back who is reliable and can give Saquon Barkley well-deserved rest. Luckily, the Giants found the perfect guy, no disrespect to Wayne Gallman, but he is just not the answer.

Wayne Gallman’s 2019 stats

In 2019, Wayne Gallman started in two games after Saquon went down with a high ankle sprain. Throughout the season, there was not much to cheer about, Gallman had 110 rushing yard and only two touchdowns. Even when Barkley was healthy, Gallman would only average 11 rushing yards a game. As you can see, Gallman was never a go-to option like Saquon is, Daniel Jones had to rely on throwing the ball often. This was no easy task for Jones, Saquon was out for three weeks after his first start and Gallman never was. Overall, Gallman had one standout game in the absence of Barkley. In my mind, Gallman is a backup NFL running back. He’s better off on another team that needs a backup because Dion Lewis is going to take all his touches.

Dion Lewis’ 2019 stats

Dion Lewis played a much smaller role in 2019, he was backing up star running back, Derrick Henry in Tennessee. In 2019, Dion lewis only started in one game and ran the ball 54 times for 209 yards. This is not the Dion Lewis most people are used to seeing, but he still is an upgrade over Wayne Gallman for multiple reasons.

Effective in the passing game

Back in New England, Dion Lewis was used in the short passing game. A lot of screen passes were used along with some out routes that fit lewis’ playstyle well. I can see Dion Lewis helping the Giants with his versatility, I see Jason Garrett calling a lot of screen passes, and bubble screens. With an upgraded offensive line, the Giants offense will have more time to set up screen passes and routes designed for Lewis. This signing of Lewis was huge, the Giants haven’t had a solid running back duo since Jacobs and Bradshaw.

Will give Barkley well needed rest

All Giants’ fans know that Saquon is the star running back, but it will be nice having Lewis as a backup. A guy who is effective in both ground and passing game will allow Saquon to be at his best late in games. Last season, Barkley played on every offensive down basically. If the Giants want him to last seven-plus years, they need to start protecting him. Finally, Dion Lewis will be a huge factor for the Giants in 2020.

New York Giants: How Lorenzo Carter can improve in 2020

New York Giants, Lorenzo Carter

The New York Giants’ defense needs the best version of Lorenzo Carter in 2020. Over the past two seasons, Carter has been nothing more than an average player. The Giants will need him to start at OLB if Markus Golden goes elsewhere. Through his first two seasons, the Giants have not seen the full potential of Carter, but a new defensive scheme could benefit him, and the new additions to the defense could play a big factor as well.

Lorenzo’s 2019 season stats may seem very average, but there are several areas he needs to improve. In 2019, Carter played in 15 games and started in 12. Also, had one forced fumble, 13 quarterback hits, and 25 solo tackles. I think the solo tackle number needs to be a lot higher. In the NFL, an OLB is responsible for containing the edge and not letting running backs bounce outside the tackles.

Needs to improve his pass coverage

The Giants’ defense has struggled in the passing game over the past three seasons. Especially linebackers in general, Lorenzo Carter, was not used a lot in pass defense, but when targeted, he struggled. In 2019, Carter was targeted five times and allowed three completions for 35 yards. Now, I know it may not seem like a lot, but this is a 60% completion percentage allowed when targeted. Overall, Carter did improve from 2018, but he needs to be better if Markus Golden is no longer a Giant.

An improved secondary

This offseason, the Giants made it a focal point to fix the secondary. With the additions of Xavier McKinney, James Bradberry, and Darnay Holmes, I see the Giants having a top-20 defense in the NFL. There is a lot of young talent on defense; this is a significant factor when it comes to the development of chemistry and coalition. These three guys will be huge in the secondary for Lorenzo Carter, they will allow Carter to focus on rushing the passer and making tackles in the backfield. There will be times where Carter gets stuck in coverage, but the secondary will be behind him to bail him out if anything goes wrong. This year’s secondary is a lot more promising than 2019’s; a healthy Jabrill Peppers looking to shock the world, and McKinney, who is going to put on a show.

Increase snap count

At the end of the day, the only way Lorenzo will get better is by being on the field more. Last season, Carter played in 723 defensive snaps (65%). I want to see Carter on the field for 85% of defensive snaps. Not only will the reps help improve his game, but this will also build his confidence. I think that’s the biggest problem, Carter being confident in the defensive scheme. Hopefully, the new defensive scheme with coach Graham will fit Carter’s playstyle better. Joe Judge is all about making players’ skill set match what his plans are.

New York Giants: Saquon Barkley is tearing up the offseason workouts

New York Giants, Saquon Barkley

New York Giants’ star running back Saquon Barkley is a man on a mission this offseason.

All over social media, you can see videos of Saquon Barkley putting in that work! Whether it’s in the weight room or the football field, Saquon wants to be the best of all time. There is no doubt in my mind that he wants to prove a lot of people wrong, everyone talks about how the New York Giants drafted him and how it wasn’t the right move.

Saquon will be looking to prove the haters wrong in 2020. Barkley is a generational talent that very few teams would pass on. During the 2019 season, Saquon went down with a high ankle sprain injury; he ended up only missing three-game and still ran for 1,000 yards. Around the NFL, there were a lot of reporters who doubted Saquon. He’s coming for them in 2020.

Saquon hitting the weight room

Not only is Saquon griding on the field, but he is also working hard in the weight room. As we all know, Saquon is a different breed, he can squat over 500 pounds with ease! In highschool, Saquon was not the biggest fan of working out.

“Going into my junior year, I kind of had the idea I was going to be the starting running back. I was a little smaller, so I decided to gain weight and try to get faster. I wasn’t a fan of the weight room. I thought just the God-given talent would take you where you needed to go. Now I understand that you need hard work.”

As you can tell, the weight room has worked wonders for Saquon. For a running back to be 230 pounds and run a 4.39 40 yard-dash is unheard of. However, Saquon is a mentor to the rest of the team and wants to be the leader.  Furthermore, I have huge expectations for Barkley in 2020. With a much improved offensive line, the possibilities are endless. People may call me crazy when I say this, but I think Saquon can be the next person to rush for a 2,000-yard season. The kid is that good and the Giants finally are helping him out. For example, Saquon did everything on his own his rookie season.

New York Giants: Can Binjimen Victor be the next Plaxico Burress?

New York Giants, Binjimen Victor

The New York Giants‘ offense needs a top tier receiver to bring the unit to the next level. Back in my day, Plaxico Burress was that guy. He was the go-to guy for all big-time plays. Sadly, all Giants’ fans know the downfall of Burress; he arguably cost the team another Super Bowl run in 2008.

This offseason, the Giants didn’t use any of their drafts picks on receivers, they focused on fixing the offensive line and the secondary. As all fans know, these are the two biggest concerns for the Giants. The offensive line has been bad for too long. However, the Giants added some depth to the receiver depth chart during the undrafted free agency period.

The Giants signed Binjimen Victor, a big body wideout who can be the next Burress. After watching his highlights, I realized he has the skillset and body frame, just like Burress. It gives me chills just thinking about it.

In his first three seasons at Ohio State, Victor never started a game. However, his senior year was a different story, he saw more snaps, and his production grew tremendously. In his senior season, Victor played in 12 games and recorded 573 yards and six touchdowns. This was a breakout season for him, he averaged 16.4 yards per reception. This is why I get goosebumps thinking about him because Victor and Burress are very similar in a lot of areas. In 2007, Burress averaged 14.6 yards per reception.

I think Binjimen Victor can be the next Plaxico Burress.

Standing at 6’4″ and 199 pounds, Victor is a big body receiver just like Burress, who was 6’5″. He may not be the fastest receiver on the field, but is capable of going over the top of defenders for a jump ball and can use his length to layout for overthrown passes. This could be what Daniel Jones needs, a big receiver who can make big-time plays deep downfield.

The Giants’ offense has great slot receivers, but they’re missing a deep threat like Victor. At the combine, he ran a 4.60 40 yard-dash. He has extremely long strides, very similar to Burress. I can see the Giants trying to bulk Victor up a little bit and get him around 215 pounds. I think it would be a huge factor in his game, and he could be a great blocking receiver too at that size.

Currently, Victor will have to battle to make one of the last spots on the team. If the Giants are smart, they sign him and work with him throughout 2020. However, if he doesn’t make the team, he can earn his way up from the practice squad. I can easily see him on the field this season if Engram doesn’t make the move to receiver.

The Giants’ offense will need a big body wideout to complement the slot receivers. For a guy his size, Victor is agile and can beat a cornerback out of his break. He can blow by defenders or just go over the top of them; this is what the Giants need.

His success depends on how he does in the summer training camp and preseason. The only problem for Victor is whether or not this will all go down. There has been an increase of NFL players testing positive for COVID-19. Hopefully, he gets a shot to prove himself.

New York Giants: Why Daniel Jones will be a top-10 quarterback to draft in fantasy this year

New York Giants, Daniel Jones

New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones has all the weapons around him this season to be a top ten quarterback drafted in fantasy. The second-year quarterback will have all his receivers healthy and his star running back Saquon Barkley at full strength. In 2019, there were multiple games where Daniel Jones put up monster numbers in fantasy football. Not to forget, but Daniel Jones never had all his weapons on the field at the same time. If the New York Giants’ offense can stay healthy in 2020, it will be a monster year for Daniel Jones.

In his first career start, Daniel jones put up 34.24 fantasy points. These are numbers that you see from Aaron Rodgers or Russel Wilson. The week three game was madness, Daniel Jones completed 23 passes for 336 yards and threw two touchdowns. This was an electric game to watch for Giants’ fans. Especially when Saquon went down with a high ankle sprain and missed the rest of the game. I was proud of the young kid; he stepped up and earned respect from the Giants. Once Saquon went down, I expected the Giants’ offense to fall apart.

A healthy offense

It’s a huge factor that the Giants’ offense is healthy in 2020. This will lead to success for Jones because he has so many weapons to choose from; the possibilities are endless. If Sterling Shepard and Evan Engram can stay on the field, defenses will be in trouble. The Giants’ offense has five solid options, four at receiver and Saquon out of the backfield. I can see Daniel Jones averaging 20 fantasy points a week; call me crazy if you want, but if all these guys stay healthy, watch out.

An upgraded offensive line

The receiving core is not the only thing that will make Jones great in 2020. The offensive line for the Giants needs to step up. If they don’t, the Giants are in trouble. With the addition of Andrew Thomas, I think the Giants’ offensive line is completely upgraded. It’s still a mystery for fans to see who ends up where on the offensive line, but this year’s offensive line already looks better. Also, Daniel Jones took a beating last year; there were numerous occasions where Jones would throw the ball and be on his back a second later. If the Giants offensive line improves in 2020, Jones will go off. Giving him more time will be a nightmare for a defense, especially with all those weapons. He is a smart kid; Jones will be able to pick apart defenses in 2020 with the help of Jason Garrett. The Giants’ offense could be a top-five offense in the NFL next year, don’t sleep on it.

A whole new offense

There has been a lot of talk about how Jones will struggle to learn a new offensive system, I don’ think so. The Coronavirus has made it hard for players and coaches to meet up and discuss the new offensive system. I believe this year’s offense is going to be a lot better than 2019, Jason Garrett is going to be a hero in New York. I think the new system will fit Jones and Barkley well, a good mixture of play-action passes and some ground and pound offense.

In 2020, CBS Sports is projecting a big fantasy year for Daniel Jones. They have Jones going off against some of the best defenses in the league. For the San Fransico game, they have Jones dropping 18 fantasy points, and against the Steelers, they have Jones dropping 15 points. I would be very happy with these fantasy numbers. I drafted Daniel Jones last year in the tenth round; my friends thought I was crazy. Eventually, Daniel Jones was a clutch backup for me,  Russell Wilson started to struggle, and I needed the kid to step up. He was the reason I made the playoffs.

 

New York Giants: Projected starting offensive line in 2020

New York Giants, Nate Solder, Jon Halapio, Mike Remmers

The New York Giants‘ offensive line is the team’s kryptonite; it has been for the last five years. Finally, the Giants made improvements to the offensive line through the draft and free agency. As a fan, this makes me very happy, protecting Daniel Jones and Saquon Barkley is the primary concern. All fans want to see these guys play for eight-plus years. There are a lot of questions that need to be addressed this offseason. Who will start at left tackle? Nate Solder, or Andrew Thomas? Who will win the starting center job, Spencer Pulley, Nick Gates, or Shane Lemieux?

I think the end of the preseason will answer all these questions. Joe Judge and the coaching staff want the best man to win the starting job. All these players are going to get a fair shot, and it will come down to who wants it more and who excels at their position.

The best players will play. I don’t care where you got drafted, I don’t care if you’re an undrafted free agent, I don’t care if you’re old, young, traded, whatever you got there for. Everybody will have an opportunity every day to compete for a job on our roster. Every day. If you want to be on the field, be the best player. Outwork the guy in front of you. Prove your value to us, show you can handle the job, and we’re going to put you on the field and give you an opportunity.”

Andrew Thomas starting left tackle

Andrew Thomas is going to be the starting left tackle week one. He is the best option and has all the skills to play at the pro level. The Giants drafted him to fix their blind side problem and protect second-year quarterback, Daniel Jones. As we all saw, Nate Solder was not at his best last season. I still think Solder will be apart of the offensive line, just at another spot. In 2019, Andrew Thomas was a Walter Camp All-American first team, and winner of the SEC’s Jacobs Blocking Trophy, this was Georgia’s first recipient in 21 years!

There’s no question Thomas has the athleticism and skill set to become an All-Pro lineman; having a great offensive line coach is also huge for his development. There is no reason to move Thomas to right tackle, he played both in college but excelled at Left. Coming into the draft, Andrew Thomas was the purest left tackle; the Giants made the right decision with their fourth overall pick.

Will Hernandez starting left guard

Will Hernandez has been a reliable option since he was drafted back in 2018. Since drafted, Hernandez has started in every game (32), talk about a reliable offensive lineman! In 2019, Hernandez’s number of penalties went up (4), more than his rookie year (2). This is something that can be worked on and is not that big of a deal. He played 1067 snaps in 2019, and 1027 snaps his rookie season. The Giants’ offensive line needs a gritty guy like Hernandez, who will do all the dirty work in the trenches.

Spencer Pulley starting center

The New York Giants will have a competition battle at center. For starters, I believe Jon Halapio will be cut from the team; he has sustained too many season-ending injuries. I think the Giants have better options at center, Pulley, Gates, and Lemieux will all battle it out. I feel Spencer Pulley is going to win the starting job. He already has experience playing center, it is his primary position, unlike Gates and Lemieux. In 2019, Pulley only played in four games, he only recorded one penalty and was on the field for 95 snaps. If Pulley happens to get injured and can’t play for the remainder of the season, I want the Giants to give Shane Lemieux a shot at center. Several clips have surfaced of Shane Lemieux practicing snaps during his workouts. I feel like Nick Gates is more of a guard and would rather stay there.

Kevin Zeitler starting right guard

There is no mystery behind this one, Kevin Zeitler will be the starting right guard in 2020. He battled shoulder issues in 2019. If he is healthy, we will see a very productive right guard. I see Zeitler being the leader on the offensive line, a veteran who has a lot of experience in the NFL (eight seasons). He will be a great mentor for the young guys who were just drafted. In 2019, Zeitler started 15 games, he only missed one due to a shoulder injury. In those 15 games, Zeitler averaged 93% of offensive snaps, and only had one penalty all year! All in all, the Giants need Zeitler to be the leader of the offensive line in 2020, I think he has a few more years left to play before Shane Lemieux takes his position.

Nick Gates starting right tackle

In 2020, there will be a battle to see who plays right tackle. Most people think Nate Solder is a starter next season. I think he will come off the bench and be a fill-in type player. I think Nick Gates is the better option right now until Nate Solder can prove he can still protect and be effective in the run game. I think Solder will be a great mentor for the other offensive lineman; the Giants can’t rely on him. The Giants can’t let him play left tackle and be responsible for protecting the blindside. Nick Gates only started three games in 2019, I think 2020 could be a different story, and he could be a starter week one. He did well last season, the Giants’ offensive line was awful, and Gates was the only bright spot some games.

New York Jets: Potential First Round Picks for the 2021 NFL Draft

New York Jets

While the 2021 NFL draft is 11 months away its never too early to fantasize about the New York Jets’ next first-round pick. With the second hardest schedule and Adam Gase running the team it is inevitable that the New York Jets will finish with a top 10 pick in 2021. If the Jets play their cards right, they might be able to land a transcendent talent that will help shape the future of the team for many years to come.

Greg Rousseau, Edge, Miami

Greg Rousseau came on to the scene for the Miami Hurricanes in 2019 as arguably the best pass rusher in college football racking up 15.5 sacks as a redshirt freshman. With a 6-foot 7-inch frame and natural athletic ability he could be the second coming of Julius Peppers. If Rousseau continues his dominance next season, then he will almost certainly be the first defensive player of the board. If the Jets are fortunate to land him, they will have finally taken care of that pesky pass rusher need they have had on their team for the past 15 years.

Jaylen Waddle, Wr, Alabama

Jaylen Waddle is my favorite WR coming out of next year’s draft and it is easy to see why. Waddle is as fast as Henry Ruggs with the polish of Jerry Juedy, he is an all-around wide receiver and a major threat on every down. The Jets also need a punt returner and it just so happens that Jaylen Waddle is an excellent returner. There is nothing this man cannot do. If the Jets land Jaylen Waddle, he would immediately be Sam Darnold’s number 1 for years to come and an immediate impact player.

Shaun Wade, Cb, Ohio State

Shaun Wade will have the honor of being the Buckeyes number one corner this year and potentially the number one corner entering the draft next year. Wade has excellent speed and coverage skills which will make his transition a lot easier. Wade also has experience playing in the slot which is adds a layer of versatility to his game. The Jets have not had a true shutdown corner since Darrelle Revis but that could come to an end soon if they decide to take Wade in 2021.