NFL rosters have to be trimmed from 90 to 80 by 4 p.m. ET on Tuesday. That doesn't leave the New York Giants much time to make decisions following Monday night's preseason game against the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium.
This first cut is always a tricky one for NFL teams. It becomes complicated by training camp injuries and by the fact that teams have one more preseason game to play, in the Giants case Thursday against the New England Patriots. Some players will be kept during the initial cuts just to be sure starters don't need to see the field for any extended time.
Just for fun, though, I am going to try and predict what players the Giants will let go Tuesday. If my count is correct they may only need to release eight players. They are, as far as I can tell, carrying 89 right now and have yet to place defensive tackle Marvin Austin on injured reserve.
Likely To Go Tuesday
Todd Watkins (WR) -- The Giants still have 11 wide receivers on the roster, including Ramses Barden, who is still on PUP. Watkins is not making the final 53, and trimming a wide receiver won't impact Thursday.
Duke Calhoun (WR) -- Maybe I don't see objectively on this one, because I still don't understand why the Giants kept Calhoun last season. With the crowded wide receiver situation and the fact that it seems a lot of guys have passed him by in terms of special teams production I just don't see any reason to keep him around.
Christian Hopkins (TE) -- The Giants have five tight ends in camp, and he would appear to be the only one without a shot at making the final roster. There just isn't any reason for the Giants to keep him beyond Monday night.
Craig Marshall (DE) -- An undrafted free agent from South Florida, Marshall has watched UDFA Justin Trattou and second-year player Ayanga Okpokoworuk earn praise from the coaches while his name has never been uttered.
Ibraham Abdulai (DT) -- An undrafted free agent from Arkansas-Pine Bluff, Abdulai is buried behind Chris Canty, Linval Joseph and a sea of veteran backups. The Giants will probably want to get veterans Jimmy Kennedy and Gabe Watson playing time as they decide who to keep as backups. Abdulai is not in that discussion.
Brent Clouser (G) -- The Giants are pretty well set when it comes to backup offensive linemen. Clouser, a UDFA from Villanova, seems unlikely to stick around after Monday.
Ike Ndukwe (T) -- A four-year veteran, Ndukwe seems buried behind Jamon Meredeth, rookie James Brewer, veteran guard/tackle Stacy Andrews and maybe even undrafted free agent Jarriel King. He might be a guy capable of making an NFL roster, but it doesn't seem like it will be with the Giants.
David Sims (S) -- The Giants currently have seven safeties on the roster, including undrafted free agents Sims and Jerrard Tarrant. I am guessing that one of the UDFAs is going after Monday, and I will roll the dice and say it will be Sims.
The Giants are still carrying two placekickers, and I think they keep both for Thursday. I doubt they keep both on the final 53. They still have the two punters, and I believe they will keep four quarterbacks through Thursday night.