The New York Giants’ 2019 5th round pick, Ryan Connelly, has returned from a severe injury. Connelly completely tore his ACL in week four against the Washington Football Team. Connelly was hitting his stride as one of the leaders on a terrible defense. Despite his efforts in the previous season, Connelly will have to win his spot back, this time from veteran linebacker David Mayo.
Connelly only started in three games last year, but he made a huge difference on the mediocre Big Blue Wrecking Crew. Connelly recorded 20 tackles, 1.0 sacks, 2 interceptions, 2 pass deflections, and 2 tackles for loss. In my opinion, if Connelly had played all 16 games, he would’ve been considered one of the best rookie defenders in the league. Connelly is just a very impressive player; he’s smart, quick, aggressive, in the right spots at all times, and he listens to his veterans. Connelly had a way better season than David Mayo. If you watch the film, you can see that Connelly’s led defense flowed, unlike Mayo’s, who was more a run-stopper than coverage linebacker. The Wisconsin product can do both.
The Giants recently signed Blake Martinez to serve as the number one middle linebacker after they released Alec Ogletree. This leaves the middle linebacker depth chart as such: Blake Martinez, David Mayo, Ryan Connelly, Tae Crowder, and TJ Brunson.
The Giants will most likely have to cut one of these players, and the further you are to the bottom, the better chances you have of being cut. Connelly needs to prove his worth to the new management if he wants to continue his play with the G-men. The new management will really hurt his chances of making the Giants. Joe Judge has no ties to Connelly; he didn’t draft him or sign him. Judge drafted/signed/resigned all the other middle linebackers currently on the roster. Especially with no preseason games, Connelly needs to show his worth as fast as possible.