Next in our look at the players offered reserve/future contracts by the New York Giants is wide receiver Todd Watkins. Most recently with the Oakland Raiders, Watkins is 27 years old and nearly five years removed from his days at Brigham Young University. Watkins was drafted by the Arizona Cardinals in the seventh round of the 2006 NFL Draft, and after spending most of his time there on the practice squad he was cut following the 2007 preseason.
After a stint on the Atlanta Falcons' practice squad, Watkins was claimed off waivers by the Oakland Raiders in the 2008 offseason. Watkins appeared in only eight games his first year with the silver and black, but in 2009, he suited up for 13 and caught eight balls for 90 yards. He was released in September.
Watkins transferred to BYU from Grossmont Junior College (he previously attended Norfolk State), where he doubled as a receiver and placekicker. At Helix High School in San Diego, Watkins took the field with current NFL-ers Reggie Bush and Alex Smith and lettered in football, volleyball, soccer and track.
Needless to say, Watkins presents definite athletic promise. At 6-foot-3, 195 pounds., he possesses solid size - perhaps a bit thin - and blazing speed (he's been clocked at 4.28 seconds in the 40-yard dash) that made him one of the best deep threats in the nation during his college years. Back in 2005, Scout.com gave Watkins a generally positive review.
"Quick, explosive wide out who plays faster then his 40 time. Explodes off the line, displays sharpness running routes and gets separation. Comes back to the ball working to make himself an available target. Good eye\hand coordination and extends to make the reception away from his frame. Has a second gear and switches it on, running to the deep throw."
Clearly, Watkins has the physical tools. Prior to the 2006 Draft, though, his stock fell severely after he gained a reputation for dropping easy passes and having fumbling issues (cue the collective Giants fan groan). Receiver is perhaps the most frequently debated position for Giants fans; many love the trio of Steve Smith, Hakeem Nicks and Mario Manningham, while others are far from sold. Though the Giants do have question marks at receiver outside their big three - Ramses Barden, Derek Hagan, Devin Thomas, Mike Clayton and Duke Calhoun hardly inspire much confidence - there are still significant obstacles in front of Watkins.
Chance of sticking around: Not likely