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.
Good things happen when you stay at home. Just ask the New York Jets, who are set to open their second decade at MetLife Stadium this fall.
Our (temporary) new reality has denied us the glory and love of sports. The concept has, rightfully, taken a backseat as we look out for each other and work towards a new common good of overcoming the grim isolation that the coronavirus has brought upon us.
Of course, there is a light at the end of our proverbial tunnel. We, as a nation, have overcome disasters of epic proportions before. With teamwork and unity, there’s little doubt we can do it again.
The fact of the matter is, it’s best for all of us if we stay at home at this point. The sooner we adhere to the guidelines posted by medical experts (which include staying indoors and social distancing, save for necessities like grocery shopping and attending to loved ones), the sooner we’ll be back to enjoying the sports and events we love, living and dying with our teams.
Good things happen when you stay at home. Just ask the New York Jets, who are about to enter their second decade within the friendly confines of MetLife Stadium. As encouragement, ESM takes a look at the ten best Jets moments to go down at the stadium so far…
Victories over the mighty New England Patriots have been relatively rare in the decade of MetLife. Tom Brady and Company did at least receive a rude welcome as victims of the first Jets victory at the stadium.
The Jets dropped their Monday night Metlife debut to Baltimore, but went on to shock the Patriots to the tune of a 28-14 triumph less than a week later. Tight end Dustin Keller took center stage with a career-best 115 yards in victory. 2008’s first-round selection also caught the last of Mark Sanchez’s three touchdown passes to help put the game away (Braylon Edwards and Jericho Cotchery caught the others). Defensively, Antonio Cromartie and Brodney Pool each victimized Brady for an interception. Jason Taylor put the tastiest cherry on top by ending New England’s final possession with a sack and forced fumble, recovered by Bryan Thomas.
10/11/10: Viking Conquest
The Jets’ kooky Brett Favre summited at an 8-3 ledger in November that had some Jets fans thinking Super Bowl. But a 1-4 finale had the Jets searching elsewhere for a quarterback (leading to the drafting of Mark Sanchez) and Favre destined for his umpteenth retirement. By late August, the Vikings made an offer he couldn’t refuse and he wound up taking them to the NFC title game.
When Favre returned to East Rutherford two seasons later, the Jets thanked the gunslinger for his services by having their defense constantly wrap Favre up in hugs…those under pressure, that is. Favre was sacked four times, but, true to form, managed to keep Minnesota in the game with three touchdown passes. One of those scores was of the 37-yard variety to Randy Moss, partaking in his first game in a Viking uniform since 2004.
MetLife braced for the worst when Minnesota forced a Jets punt immediately after the final two-minute warning and the home team struggling to hold a 22-20 lead. One year after Favre led the league in interceptions with the Jets, he threw one more in New Jersey. This one, however, brought Jets fans to their feet in the form of an interception returned for a touchdown by Dwight Lowery. The first touchdown of Lowery’s career put the game out of reach in the form of a 29-20 final.
The 2010 New York Jets were an exercise in waiting for the other shoe to drop. Everyone in football thought their 2009-10 trip to the AFC title game was a fluke, but they got rid of those notions with a 9-2 start to the season.
The penultimate win of that slate was a thrilling last-minute win over the Houston Texans, mere days before they demolished the Cincinnati Bengals in a Thanksgiving tilt. New York dealt with a challenge from the pesky Texans, who turned a 23-7 Jets lead into a 27-23 advantage, one they held with 55 seconds to go in the game. The detractors were certain that this would be the end of the Jets, the final blow to yet another magical season. But Sanchez worked some late-game magic, one that sent East Rutherford into hysterics. Things seemed dire with the Jets situated 48 yards away from the end zone with 24 seconds to go, but a 42-yard catch-and-run for Edwards allowed Sanchez to put the finishing touches on the victory.
In almost a reverse angle of his Super Bowl-winning catch for the Steelers, Santonio Holmes caught a six-yard Sanchez toss in the corner of the end zone with 16 seconds remaining to allow the Jets a 30-27 escape.
The 2011 NFL season’s first Sunday landed on the most solemn of occasions: the 10th anniversary of September 11, 2001’s tragic events. After a day full of patriotic displays and tributes to the lives lost, the proceedings wrapped up at MetLife Stadium…just over 11 miles from where the World Trade Center’s Twin Towers once stood. Moments of remembrance, attended to by former United States President George W. Bush and many first responders, were followed by a highly anticipated tilt between the Jets and the Dallas Cowboys.
Dallas led 24-10 at the onset of the fourth quarter, but the Jets soon began an unforgettable rally. Plaxico Burress got things started with a 26-yard touchdown catch from Mark Sanchez. The teams would then exchange fumbles before Isaiah Trufan took a punt blocked by Joe McKnight back for a touchdown. Dallas’ would-be game-winning was stifled by none other than Darelle Revis, who intercepted a Tony Romo pass intended for Dez Bryant and took it into opposing territory. Former Cowboy Nick Folk dealt the final blow to his former mates, booting a 50-yard field in the final minute to secure the 27-24 win.
11/27/11: J-E-T-S Spells Revenge
The Jets’ divisional rivalry with the Buffalo Bills hasn’t gotten drastically ugly in the new century, but an exception was made in their post-Thanksgiving showdown in East Rutherford.
With Burress still on the 2011 edition, Bills receiver Stevie Johnson celebrated a first-half touchdown by pretending to be shot, referencing the receivers nightclub incident in 2008. The dated, classless jab immediately backfired on Johnson when the Bills flubbed a surprise onside kick and immediately let up a 14-yard score to Burress himself.
Burress had actually saved his best for last. With the Bills up 24-21, Burress’ one-handed catch on a third down with 11 to go kept the Jets’ victorious final drive alive. Two plays after the catch, Holmes caught a pass on a Sanchez rollout to give the Jets a 28-24 win.
The saga of the 2015 Jets is a lot like watching Avengers: Infinity War: it was incredibly fun to watch, there are countless moments that make you stand up and cheer…it’s rewatch value, on the other hand, is completely ruined by its harrowing ending. If the Jets’ season-ending, playoff-costing loss to the Buffalo Bills served as Thanos’ infamous snap, their win over MetLife roommates was the closest thing they’ll get to an equivalent of Thor arriving with a new weapon via the Bifrost in Wakanda.
East Rutherford civil wars are routine in the preseason but are staged only once every four years. The 2015 edition featured both the Jets and New York Giants in the thick of their respective playoff races. New Jersey was set to be a blue state after the Giants put up 20 points in the second quarter. That haul seemed to be sustainable, so much so that the first interception of Rontez Miles’ career seemed with eight minutes left in regulation seemed like little reason to celebrate. The fact that the ensuing drive ended with a short Randy Bullock field goal wasn’t exactly inspiring either.
But optimism squeaked through after the Jets forced a punt down 20-13 in the final minutes. With just over a minute to go, Ryan Fitzpatrick channeled his inner Randall Cunningham, earning nine more yards than he needed to on a fateful fourth down with six to go. Two plays later, Fitzpatrick would send the game to overtime with a nine-yard scoring pass to Brandon Marshall.
In the extra session, Bullock booted a 31-yard field to give the Jets the lead. The defense then forced Josh Brown and the Giants into a deep 48-yard attempt, one that sailed wide left and gave the Jets the narrow win.
12/27/15: Boston OT Party
Knowing the terrors that awaited one week later in Buffalo, the penultimate game of the 2015-16 regular season may be the most bittersweet moment any team in NFL history has experienced. But, for one week, the turf of MetLife provided pure pigskin euphoria.
The Christmas season was no holiday for the Jets. They had exceeded expectations with a respectable record, but needed to top the Patriots in their home finale to keep a postseason dream alive. Their 9-5 ledger put them in a three-way tie for the AFC wild cards, but tiebreakers allotted the spots to Kansas City and Pittsburgh. New England had, predictably, wrapped the AFC East title, but was still battling Denver and Cincinnati for the AFC’s top playoff seed.
A pair of Ryan Fitzpatrick scoring hookups with Brandon Marshall built a 17-3 lead for the Jets. Typical Jets-Patriots antics of the new century ensued thereafter. New England narrowed things to one possession when Jamie Collins took a Fitzpatrick fumble back for a touchdown while the Jets only mustered a Bullock field goal to add to their lead. Brady made them pay with a nine-yard touchdown pass to James White that helped tie the score. The Jets nearly won in regulation, but a Fitzpatrick deep ball in the final minute sailed out of the reach of Quincy Enunwa.
New England opted for overtime after a Ryan Quigley punt. It was a rare decision that Bill Belichick would come to regret.
Winners of the overtime coin toss, the Jets wasted no time in the new life afforded to them. Fitzpatrick needed just five plays to go 80 yards for the victory. 48 of that tally came on a successful deep ball to Enunwa, while the final six were on Fitzpatrick’s game-winning toss to Eric Decker for the 26-20 victory. With that throw, Fitzpatrick tied Vinny Testaverde’s 1998 record for most touchdown passes in a single Jets season. Pittsburgh’s ensuing loss to Baltimore put the Jets in control of their playoff destiny moving forward
Nothing more needs to be written about the Jets’ eventual 22-17 loss to the Bills the week after. However, the memorable win at MetLife offered the Jets a quantum of solace weeks later. Thanks to their loss in East Rutherford, the Patriots lost control of the AFC’s top seed. That forced them to go to Mile High for the AFC title game, which the Broncos won in Denver en route to their Super Bowl 50 title.
The Jets immediately eclipsed that total in Week 4 against the Jacksonville Jaguars a team that would up reaching the AFC title game. 2017’s New York City Marathon was over a month away, but the Jets got things off to an early start with long scoring runs from Bilal Powell (75 yards) and Elijah McGuire (69 yards) to build a 20-10 lead. Jacksonville, however, reinserted themselves into the game with a 10-point fourth quarter rally. Myles Jack took a fumble back 81 yards for a score, and future Jets Pro Bowler Jason Myers kicked a field goal in the final minute to send things into overtime.
It was an extra session that, frankly, could’ve been avoided. In the dying stages of the first half, Lac Edwards set the Jets up in prime position for a bigger on a 31-yard pass via fake punt to Marcus Williams. However, Chandler Catanzaro missed a 45-yard field goal.
Redemption took a while to manifest, but it eventually came in the final stanzas of overtime. A tie seemed to be in the cards, but a Jeremy Kerley punt return earned 15 extra yards after an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty from Paul Posluszny. Catanzaro then came on for a 41-yard field goal he successfully converted for the 23-20 win.
10/7/18: Run With the Horses
Two Jets records, one unconventional, were set in their 34-16 win over Denver.
The Jets have several renowned rushers pass through their ledgers. But it’s not Curtis Martin, Freeman McNeil, Thomas Jones, or Emerson Boozer who hold the single-game rushing record. That honor instead goes to Isaiah Crowell, he of only 13 games in green. Crowell torched the Broncos for 219 yards, a majority of it coming on a 77-yard score that made up the Jets’ first points on the afternoon. Perhaps more shockingly, Crowell needed only 15 carries to do it. Sam Darnold completed only 10 passes, but three of them ended in touchdowns (two to Robby Anderson). That was enough to secure his first MetLife Stadium win.
With the outcome well in hand, Denver tried to make things respectable. On the final play, Case Keenum’s would-be touchdown pass to Courtland Sutton was intercepted by Marcus Maye. The safety ran it back 104 yards but he was stopped just short by Sutton, the one man to run longer than him. It was good for the longest return in Jets history, and the longest return in NFL history that didn’t end in a touchdown.
11/10/19: Back to the Future
The likenesses and jerseys of Darnold, Daniel Jones, Jamal Adams, and Saquon Barkley are expected to adorn the respective entrances and patrons of MetLife Stadium for years to come. Fans of both metropolitan sides got a glimpse of what this group of football stardom had to offer when they met last fall.
Darnold spotted the Jets an early 14-point lead through both the air and the ground, rushing for a two-yard score before finding Jamison Crowder for a 23-yard strike. While the Jets were able to hold Barkley to a single yard on 13 carries, but Jones showed what he could do in the form of four touchdown tosses. Even when Adams pried the ball away from him for a score, those passes allowed the Giants to take a slim lead into the fourth quarter.
But after a Giants three-and-out late in the third (capped off by a Nathan Shepard sack), the Jets took the lead for good on a one-yard run by Le’Veon Bell early in the fourth. Defenses mostly reigned from there on out, with the Jets earning a Sam Ficken field to provide insurance in what became a 34-27 win.
With Eli Manning finally reaching the end of the road after a lengthy 16-year-career with the New York Giants, the old Hall of Fame debate bubbled to the surface.
Some feel as if the longevity of Manning’s career and consistent health contributed towards his mammoth-like numbers, and that winning two improbable Super Bowls isn’t enough to justify being inducted into Canton.
I believe Manning is a shoo-in to make the Hall of Fame. Manning’s numbers are skewed by a variety of factors, primarily at the expense of Jerry Reese’s poor drafting and inability to piece together a serviceable offensive line. During Manning’s second Super Bowl run, his defense ranked poorly across the board, but his postseason heroics willed them to a victory over the New England Patriots.
His defense ranked 27th in the league during the regular season, as he posted insane numbers in the playoffs (1219 yards, 9 TDs, 1 INT, 65.0 completion percentage.
While some might feel this isn’t worthy of the Hall of Fame, his former teammates, Plaxico Burress, undoubtedly does:
“He will go down as one of the greatest quarterbacks in NFL history of all time,” said Plaxico Burress, who caught the game-winning touchdown in the Giants’ Super Bowl XLII victory over the previously unbeaten Patriots. “He’s a first-ballot Hall of Famer in my book. To be able to come to this city and this market, and go through the criticisms and all of the things he had to fight through on a week-to-week basis. … Nobody got it worst than he did when things weren’t going well, and he never wavered.”
The New York Giants isn’t an easy team to play with, mainly due to the attention:
Playing in New York is not an easy task, but Eli did it was class and respect. The criticism he suffered through is something to consider in this argument, but at the end of the day, never missing a game due to injury and walking away with two Super Bowl wins should be enough to join the league of legends.
The Eli Manning situation isn’t an easy one for the New York Giants to handle. Manning was going to end up moving out of his starting role at some point, with his play not being what it once was, but it’s always going to rub some people the wrong way to bench a franchise legend in an abrupt way like the Giants did. The team supported Manning through the offseason and reasserted a number of times that Manning was the starter, rather than the rookie Daniel Jones.
Until Manning wasn’t. The announcement that Manning would be benched after only two games, neither of which featured a full set of healthy receivers for Manning to work with, came as practically a surprise after the Giants picked up their second loss of the season last Sunday.
Where is Manning’s career going to go from here? The season isn’t over and Jones isn’t guaranteed to start for the entire year, but it’s hard to not see the writing on the wall that things are likely done between Manning and the Giants. It’s hard to bring a player back after making the move to start another quarterback, which isn’t just a practical one but a symbolic one also, showing in a way that the torch is being passed.
It seems like Manning playing for another team is more of a realistic scenario than coming back to a starting role with the Giants. What do others think about the scenario? Well, Manning’s former receiver Plaxico Burress believes Jacksonville is one potential landing spot for the Giants QB.
“I don’t believe that No. 10 is done. I could see him down in Jacksonville reuniting with the great Tom Coughlin… I would be really happy for him to see that happen,” Burress told TMZ.
“I think that his time over in New York may be over, but as far as going somewhere else and playing football, I believe that he can still do that,” the former receiver added.
It seems, of course, like the Jaguars are on the list of quarterback needy teams – and with Tom Coughlin running the show as the Executive VP in Jacksonville, it doesn’t seem like a stretch to say that Manning could end up there if both he and the Giants agree that a move elsewhere is the best option for him at this point.
We’ll see what happens in the immediate future, but with plenty of surprises already happening in 2019 such as Eli Manning being benched in the first place, don’t be all too surprised if there’s suddenly a headline about Manning being traded to the Jaguars – it wouldn’t be the craziest thing to happen during this season and offseason.
Throughout the 2019 offseason, the state of the New York Giants‘ quarterback room will be a highly debated and widely discussed topic around the NFL. Giants fans are split. Their beloved franchise hero, Eli Manning, is now 38 years old. He has received increased criticism over the past two years for his regressing performance. Taking his age and performance into account, fans and analysts have been debating whether or not the Giants should move on from Manning.
Since this is such a highly discussed topic, analysts have even asked Eli’s former teammates what they think. Eli is known for being a great teammate. He has strong relationships with his current and former teammates. Despite this, not everyone has defended him recently. Some former teammates have even admitted that they believe it is time for the Giants to acquire a new quarterback.
Former New York Giants receiver Victor Cruz has been asked about Eli on multiple occasions. In one impromptu interview with TMZ, Cruz was asked if he would bench Eli. His response: “Maybe, yes at the moment.Just to see what I got in my future. Just to see what’s going on.”
This interview took place midseason in November. Eli never did get benched, so the Giants do not know what they have as their future. Backup rookie quarterback Kyle Lauletta saw limited playing time in a blowout against Washington, but that’s about it. The future of the Giants’ quarterback position is still a huge question mark.
Fans believe the Giants will need to find their future franchise signal-caller this offseason, and a couple of Giants legend agree.
The wide receiver who caught Eli’s game winning touchdown pass in Super Bowl XLII has made his opinion very clear. Plaxico Burress believes the Giants should draft a quarterback this offseason. More specifically, Burress would like to see the Giants draft Ohio State quarterback Dwayne Haskins Jr. in 2019. On January 18, Burress stated hon FS1’s Undisputed: “My mindset is if Dwayne Haskins is available at the 6th pick, we gotta take him.”
This is the mindset of a lot of Giants fans. All over social media Giants fans are calling for the Giants to take Haskins in the 2019 NFL Draft. Some fans and analysts even think the Giants should trade up to ensure they get Haskins.
Former Giants Hall of Fame defensive end Michael Strahan has a different, but similar idea for the Giants in 2019. He too believes the Giants should draft a quarterback in 2019. However, he thinks the Giant should draft a different quarterback: Kyler Murray. Kyler Murray out of Ohio State is a controversial prospect who declared for the draft earlier this week. It is still not confirmed that he will choose the NFL over the MLB, but if he does, he could be a top ten pick in the 2019 NFL Draft.
Michael Strahan is a fan of Murray’s abilities. During an appearance on the Dan Patrick Show, Strahan discussed how he would handle the Giants’ current quarterback situation. He would handle it in a similar fashion to how the Giants handled it in 2004, when Eli was a rookie. When asked about his plan, Strahan said: “I’d draft (Kyler) Murray and then I’d let him learn from Eli for the year or eight, nine, 10 games.”
This is a plan plenty of Giants fans could get behind, whether it be Haskins or Murray. Regardless of who the Giants select in the 2019 NFL Draft, they must address the quarterback decision. The fans know it, the players know it, and the front office needs to know it too.
Everyone has an opinion on what the New York Giants should do about Odell Beckham Jr’s contract, and that includes former receiver Plaxico Burress. Of course, Burress knows a thing or two about playing wide receiver for the Giants, having caught the winning touchdown in Super Bowl XLII. That’s not the only reason why his take is interesting, though.
Burress fought for a new contract and skipped minicamp following the Super Bowl win, and the situation is vaguely similar to the current one with Beckham Jr.
“Everybody in the world knows the guy needs to be rewarded. It’s only a matter of time. Don’t have him disgruntled going into the season, and then you lose him. Why even put yourself in that position?” Burress told NJ.com.
His fear is one that many Giants fans have been voicing since last season. When the team went 3-13, large parts of the fanbase assumed that Beckham would take more money to move to a winning team when his contract is up. Now that it’s June and Beckham still doesn’t have a contract, those worries have only become more intense.
As far as paying Beckham goes, Burress has the same opinion as many of the fans. “I hope that he doesn’t let that affect him going into training camp. I say just go pay the guy so they can put all that behind them and everybody goes into a season with a tremendous focus of winning another championship.”
He also touched on another controversial subject, and that’s whether the Giants can win with Beckham in the future or not.
“I think he is a generational talent. He has everything that a wide receiver possibly could have. He is a fierce competitor, and a lot of people misconstrue some of the things that go on. But the guy wants to win bad. He competes, and I love that part about him. At the same time, there is a maturation process, too. I think he’ll realize and come into his own. You can build a team around him.”
Lastly, Burress has a positive outlook for what lies ahead, and on the situation with Eli Manning going into the 2018 season. “Obviously, last year nobody did really well. If you protect him, especially with the weapons he has and bringing in Saquon, it can have the possibility of being one of the most explosive offenses in football.”